TrendsSara K

Paul Smith’s Pakistani Chappal Action

TrendsSara K

Sid (aka sister) won’t leave me alone till l give you all some chappal action. Yes, you heard me - chappal action! She keeps wats app'ing me ‘blog Sarah, blog!!!!!’. I told her 'my blog isn’t chappal worthy’ but she put up a good fight and l gave in so here it is…

The £300 Pakistani Shoes 'Paul Smith surprise’ you serious? The old classic Asian Pakistani chappal shoes are back to haunt me!!! Just seeing them takes me back. I’ve seen these before, Dad and relatives had a pair. Every single Pakistani man has owned a pair of these sandals at some point in his life. 

So l’m sure you’re all wondering what the fuss is about and what’s the latest British Asian news. Well, British fashion designer Paul Smith’s new collection consists of traditional Pakistani Peshawari chappal shoes sandles. The British designer has recreated and is selling the exact Pakistani chappal-style shoes which originate from Pakistan which are traditionally worn by Pakistani’s and Asian’s for many years.

There is no patent on the design of the shoes so Paul Smith has taken what is has seen on his travels and recreated the men’s sandals as shown in the photo. However many are unhappy the shoes are exactly the same as the Pakistani design; the only difference is the funky pink rim. 

Also they weren't too impressed with name of the shoes 'Robert’ as it has no connection to the shoes Pakistani heritage and origin. In addition, Paul Smith used the exact Pakistani design of the shoes and produced the shoes but selling at a crazy price. The other reason why Pakistani’s are furious is the ridiculous £300 price tag. Yes, a whopping 30X the cost of the shoes in Pakistan. They feel cheated and their ideas stolen. 

I’ve noticed Asian’s are very protective of their clothes and designs (this is one of the reasons). You could argue, if they so good then you have nothing to worry about :P I’ve noticed you take your mobile out most shop and boutiques get ready jump at you as if your a criminal :D Whereas, British shops everything online, take pics in shops they don’t care and their designs are easier to copy. These days we can find pictures online and in magazines - all for marketing and promotional purposes.

Western companies and designers like Paul Smith focus on building power brands. Plus most outlets buy items from power houses such as India and China and sell them on for hundreds. On the other hand, Eastern focus on making the products and not give any thought to business strategy of even marketing concepts.

It’s a matter of time slowly more and more Pakistani, Indian and Bangladeshi fashion elements creep into the British market place. People forget leather, denim  and embroided garments sold on fashion high streets around the world are made in Pakistan. 

The British have built a £££££ empire and Paul Smith has made a name for himself that he’s able to recreate and sell for £300+ good luck to him! On the other hand he should have changed it a bit, be inspired not copy and at least pay tribute to the Asian fashion which does a lot in the world but isn’t voiced or mentioned!

It’s nice to see how my perception of these horrific chappals (l hated so much) has changed. It’s amazing what a designer stamp, branding and being on British soil can do. Just goes to show, you can run from your background but you can’t hide :S A great additional to my British Asian fashion blog. NOT!!! 

 Pakistani Chappals in Bury Park, Luton

Pakistani Chappals in Bury Park, Luton

Hey let’s look on the funny side, if you’re a businessman you’ll be in the process of getting your kid to buy you a calling card as you read this and getting your wife to give you Uncle Sajid’s number to see what he can squash in his suitcase on his next flight down to viliath aka Britain. All shoes in the massive suitcase and just the clothes on his back and the promise to get him a beautiful British visa stamp :P

Paul Smith eat your heart out ;) The ICONIC Pakistani chappal’s in action. The 2nd montage above, the pics were taken 2 years ago, when shopping for a bridesmaid dress and were found in Fabeha Boutique in Luton. I had to try the chappals menswear for myself and show them off in their full golden glory :P

I hope you enjoy reading the magazine, as much as I loved sharing the hidden fashion gems and supporting women promoting their fashion business. I'm always on the lookout for inspirational women running or thinking of starting up a fashion business. If you're one, please get in touch and you can join me at one of my exclusive meetups for women with fashion businesses.