Cork Sandals: A Shoe Staple from Ancient Rome to Modern Times

Cork Sandals: A Shoe Staple from Ancient Rome to Modern Times

By Donna Gibson

Cork is made of a species of oak tree that is very porous and light and has been used for thousands of years in a variety of ways, but the use of the material for cork shoes began in ancient Roman times where Romans used it to create cork soles for their sandals. It was considered a good material to use because of its durability, comfortable feel and ability to absorb shock from walking or running. Cork sandals were one of the two main staples of Roman shoes with the other being leather sandals and have been dated back as about 300 B.C.

Cork shoes through the years have evolved as we humans have become more capable of understanding the world around us. Cork sandals and shoes grew in and out of fashion over the centuries based upon a number of factors such as availability, necessity, etc. They were seen as a staple in shoe work again during the Middle Ages, providing a common thread in many societies around the world during that time. The cork shoes fell out of fashion again after the Middle Ages to become a new craze all over again during the Elizabethan era where wood and cork shoes were a particular trendy item. It was very common for socialites to wear cork sandals with heels that reached upwards of seven to eight inches, if not more. Women wore cork shoes as they were preferred for their lightness due to wooden heels having a clunky, heaviness to them that often lead to mishaps. Cork shoes found popularity again during the 1900’s as both women and men turned to cork sandals as trendy summer footwear. Cork shoes became especially popular during the 60’s and 70’s when the cork wedge shoe became stylish.

Cork heels offer a woman the chance to wear tall sexy heels that show off their legs while still having the maneuverability of a lightweight sandal or flat shoe. Whether worn flat or in sky high heels, cork shoes are a perfect choice for a woman’s shoe collection as they offer a sexy, no hassle option for lightweight, durable footwear during the summer, spring or fall. The sexy footwear is just the right mixture of casual, trendy and beachwear to give any woman’s outfit an added boost.

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