The wooden clogs. As you travel throughout Asturias you will notice that many of the locals are wearing wooden clogs known as Madreñas. They might seem slightly out of place on a pavement or an Asphalt road but when you put them on and tackle a steep field or muddy path you then realise that madreñas are quite simply the best off road footwear there is.
The wooden clogs are waterproof, insulated and very comfy once broken in….. (the slippers you wear with them do help to soften them up) but they are also surprisingly inexpensive for what they are.
Traditionally hand crafted out of birch and other types of wood, these wooden clogs also carry the signature of the hand that made them in the design on the front which can be quite elaborate and is handed down from generation to generation of Madreña makers.
The climate in Asturias is humid and often rainy making the roads and the fields wet and muddy. It was necessary to be able to carry on about your business and somebody came up with the idea of the madreñas. These are over shoes that you can slip your feet in with your normal shoes already on. On the sole there are bits that stick out so that you are raised further from the mud. Again, these are not limited to the principality but also can be found in Northern Spain and the mountainous areas.
Many think that the art of crafting wooden clogs or madreñas is a dying one but we at Where is Asturias think it could make a comeback…..It’s not often that you get to watch your new shoes been carved out in front of you!
Enjoy this video!!!!
Many thanks to:
Juan Lozano for appearing in the video.
Mancomunidad del Valle de Nalon
Museo de la Madera (Museum of Wood) in Veneros, Caso
and the Madreña makers at Virgen de los Remedios, Pambley
For all their help with the production of the video.