The Shoe Museum, originally called the Footwear Museum of Marikina, is an homage to Marikina City’s vital role, as the Shoe Capital of the Philippines, in nurturing and promoting the commercial, cultural and historical values of its shoe industry. Marikina City has a long history of footwear manufacturing. It started in 1887 when necessity forced Laureano “Kapitan Moy” Guevarra (whose house is a stone’s throw away from the museum) to fix his own shoes. After several failed attempts and with the help of Tiburcio Eustaquio, a wooden clog maker, and some borrowed tools, Kapitan Moy finally made the first pair of Marikina shoes.
The Shoe Museum, like its name, has experienced some reincarnation as well. It was an arsenal during the Spanish period. It was converted into a detention cell during the Filipino-American war and General Macario Sakay called it his home for a while. Towards the end of American occupation, it became a motor pool for American soldiers. After World War II, the Tuason family used it as a rice mill. Currently, it houses 800 of the 3,000 pairs of shoes that once belonged to the extensive collection of former First Lady Imelda Marcos. Aside from the jaw-dropping Imeldific collection, portions of the Shoe museum are dedicated to Evolution of Shoes Exhibit, shoes from other countries, shoes designed for competitions, miniature shoes, and shoes of Filipino politicians, mayors of Marikina City, actors, directors and other celebrities.
The façade of Shoe Museum in Marikina City
A giant boot welcomes the visitors to Shoe Museum
Sapatos (Shoes) Festival presents Evolution of Shoes:
The bakya or wooden clogs were worn by the locals even before the Spaniards arrived to the Philippine shores. The bakya in this blog’s name refers to this, so it gets top spot. 🙂
Clockwise from top left: (1) Oldest sandals (8000 BC). Sage bark sandals from Fort Rock Cave, Oregon, USA are the oldest pair found to date. (2) Esparto sandals (6000 BC). Sage bark sandals from Fort Rock Cave, Oregon, USA are the oldest pair found to date. (3) Oldest leather shoes (3500 BC). The oldest leather shoe, also known as Areni-1, was found in Armenia. (4) Iceman’s shoes (3300 BC). Otzi the Iceman’s shoes – a simple cloak made of woven grass to protect the wearer from severe cold.
Top: Dutch clogs (1230 BC). A clog is a kind of shoes made simply or directly from wood. Traditional clogs were frequently worn in heavy labor. Whole feet clogs can provide sufficient protection for use without additional support. Bottom: Greek shoes (1000 BC). Pedila of Homer’s time was a soldier’s shoe and Krepis, the soldier’s shoe with carved tongue indicated a free man or citizen.
Viking leather shoes (800 BC). When Scandinavian Norsemen explored Europe by its oceans and rivers for trade and conquest, they evolved from sandals to leather shoes to protect their feet from harsh climates.
Roman strap sandals (50 BC). Romans devised thongs suitable for military activities which were also adapted for Gladiator sports.
Cavalier Boots (27 BC). Popular in Europe, commonly known as pirate boots.
Top: Indian Moccasins (1750s). Native American shoes that varied and evolved in different tribes and climates. This easy to wear yet classy piece of footwear started an unending era of fashion footwear for men. Bottom: Oxford shoes (1860). Oxfords first appeared in Scotland and Ireland where they are occasionally called Balmorals after the Queen’s castle in Scotland. These are few of the historical shoes that are still in fashion today.
Shoes from other countries, clockwise from top left: China, Brazil, Turkey, and Malaysia.
The shoes that follow were submitted to the 2014 Filipino Footwear Competition. They are truly
Shoes Made in Marikina
Clockwise from top left: (1) Abstract Heels, shoes designed by Vaughn Michael Buri. Materials: abaca fabric, off-white satin and green snake fabric. (2) Heels of Earth, shoes designed by Sally Jane Flores. Materials: suede leather, pearl, clam shells, and carved wood. (3) Kulayang Hiraya, shoes designed by Erika Lauren dela Cruz. Materials: black leather, gold leather and water lily. (4) Sol, shoes designed by Kathleen Rose Salcuti. Materials: suede (tan genuine leather), gold and metallic genuine leather, pigskin, wood, paint, and crystals.
Left: Fourinone, designed by Rene Santos. Materials: genuine crocodile skin, calf skin, pig skin, gold metallic leather, EVA outsole and wedge. Right: The Olsed, shoes designed by Medelyn Ison. Materials: abaca, water lilies, mahogany, golden brown genuine leather.
Clockwise from top left: (1) Stitches, shoes designed by Cari Dawn Campbell. Materials: leather, Saguran weave (Talipot palm). (2) Coliseum, shoes designed by Vaughn Michael Buri. Materials: buntal fabric and black soft leather. (3) Flabberious, designed by Erika Lauren dela Cruz. Materials: Patent blue and black, silver studs, carved wood, and broken mirrors.
Beach Princess, shoes designed by Gerome Sta. Mesa. Materials: round wood, carved wood, round yellow beads, sinamay, canvas fabric, string fringes, wood tube beads, and string ropes made of fiber. It won the competition.
View of the left side of the ground floor of Shoe Museum
View of the right side of the ground floor of Shoe Museum
To read more, please visit Shoe Museum – Marikina City, Part I.
Where: Shoe Museum is at the corner of J. P. Rizal Street and Mendoza Street in Marikina City. It is a short walk from Our Lady of the Abandoned and the house of Kapitan Moy Guevarra.
When: Shoe Museum is open for public viewing from Monday to Sunday except on holidays, from 8am to 5pm, with lunch break from 12noon to 1pm. It is open to walk-ins and group tours.
How much: The entrance fee for Shoe Museum is P50.00 (US $1.17) per person.
How: I do not know how I got there. 🙂 I just relied on the help of nice strangers from Marikina. 🙂 I think one can take a jeep bound for Marikina-Bayan from Gateway (Aurora Boulevard) or from Katipunan LRT Station.