Until 100 years ago, the Opinca was the base form of footwear sustaining the evolution of Romania’s heritage. Through its simplicity, being worn in different occasions – from ceremonies to battles – the Opinca was an integral part of romania’s traditional garment.
Formerly a necessity, now a symbol – I felt inspired to rebirth the Opinca in a contemporary style, while still preserving its ancestral character.
The idea surged me back in the ’90, while seeing how, in the traditional romanian garment – this ancient accesory was being gradually replaced with modern high heel shoes.
Through this piece I wanted to make the Opinca continue its tradition – while also understanding the high heel and the posture it brings.
Thus the high heel Opinca was born.
Taking inspiration from the romanian traditional garment, the High Heel Opinca is entirely hand crafted, following the traditional craftsmanship and processing techniques inherited from the elders. The new Opincas are made from oak bark tanned leather, and the heel is inspired from the traditional distaff tool used in spinning the wool.
The distaff was a well regarded accessory among women of Romania, being worn at home, at round dances, in the field or on the street, in some parts of the country this also being the first object which a young man would offer as a gift to its fiancee.
The heel is carved from oak wood, and decorated through abscission and incision with the symbol of two braided strings, representing the union between him and her. The heel ends with a brass metal detail in the upper part.
Traditional symbol of strengh and vigor, the oak tree is the nobel motif binding the two different parts of the new Opinca: the carved heel and the leather dress.