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Medieval leather shoes for women combine comfort with universality. This historical footwear will be perfect for everyday use, both in a camp and during housework.
This pair of medieval leather shoes is made of cowhide of 1,6-1,8 mm thickness, plant or chemically tanned, depending on a chosen color.
This historical footwear reaches under ankle and is laced-up with two leather straps.
In the basic version, our historical shoes are made of one layer of soft leather with a hardening in form of a heel counter and a fabric insert. These medieval leather shoes are made whole by hand. Their soles are glued to the bottom of the upper with no additional stitchings, just like the leather insoles.
Our medieval leather shoes for women are available in the following options:
- KSS1434 - leather shoes with rubber sole
- KSS1435 - leather shoes with leather sole
NOTE – our medieval shoes are sewn from various leather supplies. Colours on pictures may slightly differ from the product you receive.
This historical footwear are also available in the following colours: natural, black, brown and red. The shoes fully made from leather have light brown sole. The ones that have rubber sole have the soles in the following colours:
- natural - light brown sole
- black - black sole
- brown – dark brown sole
- red – light brown sole
If you want to change any of the mentioned colours (upper or sole), please contact us and we will check if that is possible.
Please choose a shoe size from the table below. In order to give the right size, please measure your foot and innersole in your shoes.
Foot length (cm)
- shoes are laced-up around ankle with leather straps which makes the shoe width easily fitting the foot
- high quality in a fair price thanks to hand sewing of visible stitches
- natural cowhide
- wide range of colors to choose from
- great versatility, perfect for housework and camp living
Medieval shoes from Poland
SImilar laced-up medieval leather shoes can be found in the Archeological Museum in Gdańsk (nr MAG/GD/255/20/48/1001). You can find there a low, opened left shoe, laced-up on the instep. It comes from 15th century and it is a poulaine (cracoves) type of historical footwear. The finding indicates that their tips were cut off.
Shoes in the Middle Ages
Nowadays we perceive footwear as an essential part of everyday clothing. It had similar role even hundreds years ago. A shoe protects foot against overload but also against water, cold and injuries. It also provides proper traction.
Shoes were always made of 2 parts: a sole and upper. These were produced mostly of grain leather sewn together with hempen thread. Later, historical shoes became a representative symbol which indicated the wearers’ wealth and social status. The richer a person was, the more decorative their shoe was
Today we know that foot protection was popular even in prehistory. In 1991 a pair of tourists during their trek in the Alps, near Ötztal in Southern Tyrol, found frozen corpse of a man from around 3300 BC. Ötzi, as that is how the man was named, was wearing shoes from deer skin and bear sole. He had straw of grass inside the shoes. Such construction protected his feet again injuries and moisture and ensured comfort and hygiene. In the ancient times people worn usually sandals from papyrus, sometimes from leather. Romans worn leather shoes similar to sandals with full sole, often with studs. These were called caligae.
Footwear fashion evolved in the Middle Ages. Medieval shoes were produced from cattle, sheep or goat leather. They were sewn on shoemaker's lasts. The sole was mounted with nails, then other elements were sewn together. In the 12th century a shape of shoe known today came to existence. Distinctive medieval shoes with lengthened tip can be found on miniatures from 12th century onwards.
There were many ways of decorating medieval shoes. Leather was often hemmed and decorated with additional outer elements. Usually medieval footwear was cut out, punctured, stamped, embossed, embroidered, or simply additional fancy elements like pearls were sewn onto it.
Another interesting fact is connected with colour of shoes contrasting with hose. Of course, the more fancy a shoe, the wealthier his owner was. In the medieval times people believed that the less decorative shoe was, the more god-fearing and well-behaved his owner was.
In the 15th century, shoes with pointy toes gained great popularity. These were called poulaine or crakoves. Their special shape made it a bit difficult to walk in them. It was the most significant change in the European shoe shape. The people of commune wore medieval footwear with much shorter toes. Typical poulaine were accompanied by other decorations, also to underline the original outfit. However, as soon as such footwear started to be perceived as reprehensible, wearing it became forbidden.
There is a theory saying that both of these special names can be associated with Poland. In France, it was called a la Poulaine (from Poland), and in England - crakoves (from Cracow). However, scientists till this day are not sure about the correctness of this theory.
Each medieval person knew overshoes – rigid, wooden soles with heels worn under leather shoes. These protected the footwear against mud, rain or snow. Usually it was made from one piece of wood matching the size and shape of shoe and feet. They had numerous decorations like rosettes on sides or on soles. The richness of ornaments depended mostly on the wealth of owner.
Great part in discovering the history of medieval shoes was played by Gdansk city, where numerous historical footwear were found. Both male and female examples are decorated with various adornments and embroideries which gave them unusual look. Historical notations confirm that there were 3 models of footgear: for wintertime with short upper part, traditional with revealed ankles, and shoes with a deep cut-out instep and with long tips. The craftsmen of that time found inspiration in trends from France and England.
As long as the middle of 19th century, footgear was made by hand.