shoes (footwear)


This pair of shoes made of birch bark was given to the donor in Moscow in 1968-70 by a Russian woman, Gemma Browning, whose grandmother had worn them. The grandmother was a peasant who lived in Northern Siberia. The flat shoes are made from birch bark which is woven in tabby weave to form the shoes, and cord fastenings are attached near the heel to bind the shoes to the wearer's foot. Birch bark shoes are an effective option for people living in remote parts of the world; they are cheap to make, easy to replace, provide an effective grip and can be easily insulated with leaves and grasses. They are particularly common in sub-Arctic regions prone to major temperature fluctuations.

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