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Yemeni Shoes

Yemeni are hand-made shoes with stout leather soles and red or black leather uppers. They are flat bottomed and are very practical. The person making the shoes is called a “KÖŞKER”. Part and parcel of Islamic culture, the yemeni has preserved its existence here for 600 years in styles and with names unique to each locale. The leather, which comes worked and tanned, is cut for different shoe sizes using ready-made lasts. The leather pieces are moistened to soften them up and then sewn with cotton thread that has been waxed with beeswax. The softened leather is easily shaped. While only the natural colors of the leather were used previously, black and reds were later added. And now yemenis are produced in every color from brown and orange to green and blue. Some are open in the back like sandals, while others are actual shoes. Even boots are made and dispatched to Hollywood film sets! The leather boots worn in the film ?Alexander the Great?, for example, were produced and supplied from Gaziantep.

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