Who in India doesn’t know about “ Kolhapuri” sandals? And it’s amazing that, though originally, they hail from a place called Kolhapur in the state of Maharashtra, they are available in any city in India. They have been around from time immemorial. They are so original in design and details that they stand out royally among all footwear.Think of those beautiful braided straps in leather and the bright red signature thread that kind of juts out like a feather on the cap.

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74e8d202217b51a3cbcd360c7558733b-1 I can remember seeing the “Kolhapuris” ever since I was a small kid. The concrete memory of these beautiful sandals was, when one of my cousin brothers, who studied in Pune in the early eighties, brought a pair each for his siblings and for me. I instantly fell in love with them. And although, originally they are beige in colour and made in leather, there were colour variations and mine was dyed in a deep reddish maroon. And as there was excess dye on the sandals, every time I wore it, my feet would turn red on the soles and I just loved it.

red kolhapuri

Years rolled by, but nothing much happened to the rustic, romantic status of the “Kolhapuris”! And I realized when I grew up that, these sandals looked amazing with just about any garment. They could be used with traditional wears like Saris, Salwar kameez, Lehengas, etc for women and Kurta pyjamas,Dhotis etc for men. Similarly, they go easily with western wear like Jeans, T-shirts, and Capris and even look funky with shorts. The best they look on a man or a woman, I feel is when they are teamed with a Blue Denim jeans and a White shirt preferably Linen. Wowww! There is a mandatory charm about this look. The person looks approachable, warm, intelligent, simple yet sophisticated. Although a stranger,he or she will always look like someone from your past, someone whom you knew as a cheerful person .It may sound a little weird to some, but just try looking at someone who puts together this look. And I am sure you will also start feeling what I feel.




PhotoGrid_1406779757246 It goes without saying that”Kolhapuris” transcend as classics. They never went out of vogue and never will. They keep evolving in colour, texture, design, ornamentation but will never go out of fashion. They are best described like a favourite next door neighbour who brings in a crusty apple pie on a rainy Sunday or an old school crush whom you could never really forget and who keeps giving you a friendly call now and then. They will always be there; round the corner, with a warm knowing smile.


PhotoGrid_1406176918441 And boy! The breathability these sandals give you is amazing. Nothing can give more freedom for your feet. Slip it on…slip it off… and let your feet always feel the wind. So to make your feet feel happy, loved and content, grab a pair of these amazing footwear. And as I said before, there is no anxiety whether you are in vogue or not. And many a time there is no gender difference nor status difference for this really cool pair. Quintessentially fashionable; on ramp or in raw life.




“Kolhapuris” have been the inspiration for other product design and print.

Check out the super cool mobile covers and purses.




  1. I have always loved the kolhapuris too…even though its hard for me to find my size 🙂 And yessss…….. I loved it when the red dye ran and my foot turned red :):):)


  2. Very well written. I used to love them and always had a pair when I was in India. Will get a couple pairs for sure when I come to India.


  3. Hi archana,

    Yet another wonderful article.. The topics you choose are very original and after reading them either i gain knowledge or its like teavelling back through memory lane…. Just wonderful….



  4. Loved this piece. A big fan of the Kolhapuris myself and used to team them up with kurtas and tights. And it is good to know that they are out in contemporary designs as well. Had one dyed red like you did and used to love the red on my feet too. It was like having alta put on without making the effort. Keep writing babes….


  5. I love kolhapuris. I had a pair in the past and I am looking for one for myself and hubby. Next time in India I will buy one. Hard to get hold of good ones in Kerala.Your blog brings back so many memories.


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