Thursday 11 September 2014

Shoe-Shopping in Munich

On NeuhauserStraße in central Munich one will come across the shoe-shop chain Tretter’s main store at number 39: three expansive floors of footwear. It transpires it is the largest such establishment in the whole of Bavaria. The business’ tag-line is “Schuhe für München”, Shoes for Munich. I suspect most folk looking for more traditional or conservative items would depart after finding something to purchase.

I was actually searching for a pair of dress shoes to go with my DJ (tuxedo) as I appreciate the quality of German-manufactured footwear and thought a pair would probably last much of the rest of my life. However, whilst not chancing on a pair of patent leathers or similar, I did discover Bavarian-style shoes.

The first pair I selected was cut too low around my ankle so that my foot slipped with the shoes. The second pair seen in the image below are by Josef Seibel (a brand with which I am well and happily acquainted) fitted as if bespoke. The Haferlschuhe, sometimes also known in Bavarian as Bundschuhe, are labelled Schützenschuhe in Austria. They are often worn with traditional costume, Trachten, in both Germany and Austria; but folk also wear them as quotidian footwear.

The shoes were that comfortable, that I switched from wearing my Danish Ecco slip-ons and the assistant wrapped the latter in tissue-paper and popped them in my paper carrier-bag.

Before donning my Haferlschuhe, my attentive shop-assistant water-proofed them for no extra charge. She then made out a hand-written bill which I proffered to the cashier. Old-fashioned quality service.

I strolled out of the store with a bounce in my step - well would have done if I physically could have.

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