¿Calada, Básic o Ballpa? Historial de nuestras alpargatas de más actualidad

Calada, Básic or Ballpa? History of our most up-to-date espadrilles

by Gemma Serra

Nine years after the birth of Ball Pagès, perhaps the time has come to tell you the history of our most basic espadrilles, don't you think?

We have already told you many times, that after wearing them since she was very young, Gemma decided, in the spring of 2013, to go to the heart of the island of Ibiza to learn the ancestral savoir-faire of the craftswomen who wove the typical espadrille of the island.

The aim?
To transfer to the asphalt a shoe formerly used by the peasants and that at that time only the dancers of the traditional Ibizan dance, the "ball pagès", wore.

On festivity days, to go to church or to dance the Ball pagès, men and women wear the so-called "espardenyes", between the two there is only one difference, the shape of the toe. The "espardenyes" worn by women have a closed toe and are called "espardenyes des morret", while men wear them with an open toe and are called "espardenyes d'home".

For everyday use, to go to work to the countryside, the espardenyas that men and women wore were called "espardenyes caladas" because of their shape.

After several years working to improve the quality, finishes and comfort of each of our models, the Basic and Ballpa espadrilles have been adapting at every step, and have little to do with the Calada espadrille of 2014.

We started by changing the tying system of the traditional espadrille, offering a system that is easier to tie, more efficient and above all more durable. With the traditional system, the tying ropes break very easily.

The next step was to protect the jute to be able to wear them on the asphalt without fear, we did it with a TPU sole, a high resistance material that worked well, but aesthetically was not up to the work done in each pair of espadrilles. 

Soon after, we decided to switch to leather as a finishing and protection material for the jute soles, giving a finish that matched our espadrilles, but we could still improve, working with a less rigid sole and providing elasticity for a more comfortable and natural walk. We looked for a more resistant leather, which allowed for thinner soles, thus providing greater flexibility and allowing the sole to deform according to the walking of each person. The heel is still made of TPU, providing maximum protection against wear in the most delicate area.

Among all these advances and improvements of the soles, and after repairing and changing the sisal laces of some espadrilles, we decided to apply improvements also to this part of the Ball Pagès, changing the material for a more durable one, this is the main difference between the Ballpa and Basic models: 

The Ball Pagès Basic espadrille is identical to the traditional Calada espadrille, but with all the technical improvements and savoir-faire and 100% woven and assembled with sisal fiber.

The Ballpa espadrille is like the Basic in shape and quality, but they are woven with leather, giving a more sophisticated touch and adding a lot of resistance to the tying system.

We work daily to improve the quality of Ball Pagès espadrilles.

Today the Basic and Ballpa espadrilles, our most basic espadrilles, continue to have the same image, but are better made, more durable and much more comfortable.

The Basic by Ball-Pagès, on her own, is capable of stopping time, of continuing to transmit a taste for simplicity, tradition and nature, without renouncing the complexity of its manufacture, nor contemporary life, nor walking on asphalt.

Our Ballpa, it’s so sophisticated, it’s resistant and highlights the personality of every woman who wears them. Its aesthetic contrasts make it one of the most chic pieces of Ball Pagès.

Both adapt to any outfit, from the most traditional, from the most modern and from the most timeless and believe me, under its simple and rough appearance hides a delicate and technically very complex object to make.


Designer of Ball Pagès

Our espadrilles are unique, fair, sustainable, exclusive, solidary, handmade and faithful to tradition. With the aim of perpetuating this tradition we continuously train new artisans, we share with them the savoir-faire, the evolution and the new techniques learned during these last years to be able to continue offering treasures to the world.