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Everything you need to know about espadrilles! From their humble beginnings as peasant shoes, to their introduction into modern day fashion, discover how espadrilles came to be the classic summer shoe we all love.

In addition, get tips for finding the right fit, plus easy ways to wear espadrilles with your spring and summer outfits.

Whether you’re classic or trendy, or maybe a bit of both, you’ll find a curated selection of the most fabulous espadrilles the internet has to offer.

Closeup of woman in floral dress holding a pink shoe.

I love a wardrobe full of classic silhouettes and a sprinkling of fresh new trends. For this reason, espadrilles are my go-to shoe when putting my spring and summer outfits together.

With ankle laces reminiscent of ballet slippers and beachy rope wrapped heels, espadrilles have a unique look that’s both feminine and laid back.

What’s more, its design fits in with all your favorite wardrobe styles. Whether it’s the Classic French Girl, Coastal Grandmother, Cottage or Regency Core look you’re going for, espadrilles work with these styles and more!

Find more classic outfit inspo in these other posts! Discover purple outfit ideas and easy ways to style a slip dress.

Let’s start dreaming of warmer days filled with spring and summer styles. Keep scrolling to find curated espadrille looks, plus tips and suggestions for wearing this classic piece of footwear.

Use the drop down Table of Contents menu to navigate this post!

What are Espadrilles?

A classic summer shoe, unique in design most notably for its jute and hemp rope soles, natural fabric upper, and ankle wrapped laces.

Over the years, the espadrille has evolved seeing changes in fabrics and textiles, heel heights, fastenings, and overall style.

Still to this day, the jute rope heel is a key design element that classifies any shoe as an “espadrille”.

History of Espadrilles


The first written mention of the espadrille dates back to the 14th century in a region of Spain called “Catalonia”. The shoe also has origins in other French and Spanish regions of the Pyrenees Mountains.

The French word “espadrille” comes from the Spanish word “espartena” (or “esparto”), the needle grass once used to construct its rope heel.

Worn by male and female peasants, the espadrille was a lightweight shoe, practical and durable for the hot climate and mountainous terrain of the Pyrenees.

Despite its low cost, the espadrille wasn’t easy to make. All parts of the shoe including the rope soles and upper fabrics were painstakingly, hand constructed by skilled craftsmen.

Modern Espadrilles

During the 1940s, the espadrille became a trending piece of footwear thanks to the influence of famed silver screen Actresses Lauren Bacall and Rita Hayworth.

By the 1960s, popularity of the espadrille waned as new trends like the Pilgrim style shoe and Go-Go boots emerged.

Then in the 1970s, the espadrille made a comeback! Designer Yves Saint Laurent, together with Spanish shoe manufacturer Castaner, gave the shoe a sexy wedge heel. This redesign perfectly paired with the decade’s bohemian vibes, and it’s a silhouette still loved to this day!

Today’s espadrilles are manufactured with rubber soles, making them far more durable and stable than their rope-soled ancestors.

Why You’ll Love Them!

  • Versatile – With a variety of fabrics, colors, and heel heights, espadrilles can be fun, modern, and edgy!
  • Timeless – This classic footwear keeps coming back year after year.
  • Practical – Never aerate your neighbor’s lawn with heels again! The wedge heel design keeps you and your shoes above grass and sand.

How Should Espadrilles Fit?

  • Width – Your toes and balls of your feet should rest snugly in the upper fabric, never hanging off the sides. Having said that, nothing should feel like it’s pinching or too tight.
  • Length – Again, your toes and heels should sit inside the footbed, not spilling over the front and back ends. Likewise, there shouldn’t be too much space allowing feet to slide around.
  • Laces – Start with an equal length on both ends. Pull the lace out so your foot can slide inside the loop you just made. Wrap laces securely around ankles so they’re not too tight as to stop your blood circulation (kinda important), but not so loose that they fall down. Secure ties in the back, side, or the front of your ankles.

How to Wear Espadrilles

(No hard and fast rules here, only suggestions.)

Espadrille Sandals

The open toe version of the classic espadrille is roomy and stylish.

Pair them with:

  • Embroidered or printed shorts
  • A wide leg jumpsuit
  • An airy shift dress

Top | Shorts | Sandals

Flat Espadrilles

From slip ons to buckles, the flat espadrille is a staple for any casual summer wardrobe.

Pair them with:

  • Cotton or linen midi skirts
  • A shirt dress
  • Straight or wide leg jeans

Skirt | Top | Flats

Espadrille Sneakers

The classic sneaker gets a modern and beachy twist.

Pair them with:

  • Cropped wide leg pants
  • Jeans
  • Cotton or jean shorts

Pants | Top | Sneakers

Ankle Wrapped Espadrille Wedges

Where feminine style meets laid back comfort.

Pair them with:

  • A midi skirt
  • A flowy maxi dress
  • An A-line skirt and breezy top

Dress | Bag | Earrings | Shoes

Espadrille Wedges

With slip on styles, buckles, and straps you can wear these with skinny jeans and more.

Pair them with:

  • Skinny jeans and a boxy crop top
  • A colorful wrap dress
  • A high waisted maxi skirt and fitted top

Jeans | Top | Shoes

Shop The Post

Discover fun and playful espadrille sources

Bright pink flat shoes.

These bright pink water shoes designed by Sea Star Beachwear are the ultimate mix of style & function.

Bright pink wedge sandals.
Soft pink slip on shoes.
Pink and white floral sneaker.
Pink and white flat sandals.
Pink floral shoe.
Pink wedge sandal with laces.
Yellow and brown platform sandal.
Rainbow plaid sandal.

Casual and feminine, these espadrille flats by Lauren Ralph Lauren are a breeze to slip on.

Light pink canvas shoe.
Light pink wedges with laces.
Pink and white flat sandals.
Multi-colored striped shoes.
Rainbow striped platform sandals.
Orange wedge sandal.
Orange wedge sandals.
Yellow slingback.

Easy Street designed this espadrille with a chunky rubber tread to keep your feet planted firmly on the ground.

Yellow wedge sandal.
Yellow striped closed toe sandals.
Gold platform sandals.
Brown leather shoe.
Tan wedge heels with ankle laces.
Green suede shoes.
Green platform sandals with laces.

Made by Splendid, this green espadrille definitely lives up to its brand name.

Green strappy platform sandal.
Green and brown sandal.
Orange and blue wedge sandal.
Colorful print slip on.
Blue striped espadrille wedge.
Light blue strappy sandal.
Blue and white striped espadrille wedge.
Light blue sandal with ankle laces.
A pair of crochet sandals.

Not ready to fully dive into the crochet trend? Test out the look this season with these adorable slides by Dirty Laundry.

White slip on sneaker.
Pastel rainbow espadrille.
White lace up sneaker.

Share your favorite ways for styling espadrilles in the comment section below!

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