Products to suit every occasion and customer
Embroidered shoes were originally a luxury item for the upper class during the Republican period. A splendid cheongsam, paired with custom-made embroidered shoes, was a symbol of the nobility’s taste and status, while ordinary people only had the opportunity to wear embroidered shoes during wedding ceremonies, symbolising a new chapter in their lives.
“My grandfather used to work in a shoe factory and noticed that the women workers only wore plain and simple cloth shoes, so he had the idea of creating embroidered shoes that were affordable for the masses by using affordable materials.” Miru recalls how her grandfather started the business. In response to the popularity of Western culture in the 1950s to 1960s, Miru’s grandfather introduced high-heeled embroidered shoes, followed by house slippers made from lace, silk, brocade and nylon, which were less commonly used in embroidered shoes at the time. A new market was successfully opened up as a result of the affordable prices.
“However, when it comes to my generation, the trend has changed and it is rare to see young people wearing embroidered shoes on the streets.” Miru has responded to this trend by creating embroidered shoes that can be worn both indoors and outdoors, for different occasions. In addition to house slippers, there are also flats, high heels, dance shoes and ankle boots.
Low-cost materials such as denim and linen are used, along with more durable and improved materials such as nylon and coloured threads. As for the colours and patterns, the traditional red and black combination and use of brocade and gold thread — popular with Western customers — were retained; while silver, grey, blue, green and Tiffany blue — the favourite colours of young ladies — are also used as main colours. In addition to the common wedding motifs of peony, dragon and phoenix, goldfish and other traditional patterns of flowers, birds and beasts, modern and cartoon designs (such as cherry blossoms, owls, fruits and pandas, which are popular with Japanese tourists), have also been introduced in recent years.
In addition to expanding their market to include young people, they also cater to the needs of older customers. “Many of our regular customers are getting older and have trouble walking, so I have added soft padding and a deeply-patterned, non-slip rubber sole to improve wearability and make it easier for the elderly to wear the shoes outdoors,” explains Miru.