Art And Culture

Footwear Fancy

Footwear FancyFootwear Fancy

Sho’leh Jalili owns an assorted collection of footwear with 200 different pairs gathered from all over Iran.

The gem in her collection is 1,700 years old, belonging to the Sasanid era (224 AD to 651 AD).

“Footwear means a lot to me, because I spent a lot of time jogging, biking, trekking and skating,” ILNA quoted her as saying.

Born in Tabriz, Jalili, 61, is the daughter of an army officer, and thus her life was intertwined with travelling. A student of Dutch translation she started her career as a tour manager. After 24 years in the tourism industry, she found herself “owning a variety of footgear collected from different parts of the country.”

At first, the footwear collection was for fun, but later it aroused her interest and she undertook a project to satisfy her curiosity.

“I started research on traditional Iranian shoes more than 10 years ago,” she said.

She categorized her collection by geographic areas into three sections: northern, central and southern regions of Iran. “Most of the footgear is exclusive to special activities, such as local dance or walking in heavy snow.”

“Ancient Iranian shoes were designed for special use. For instance, I have unique footwear designed for shoveling,” she says.

Jalili said the present-day domestic shoemaking industry should use the huge variety of ancient designs.

“Iran has a rich history in artistic designs. We don’t need to import footwear and can make use of our own valuable and beautiful treasures,” she maintains.