Meet the Maker: Pla

Shop Pla's handwoven footwear.


In the interior of Mallorca, far from the tourist areas, there is a large flat area, with small towns and fields full of charm. People lead a pleasant life here with only simple things. This is where Irene Peukes (founder of Pla) draws inspiration from. It is also where she designs her artisanal shoes, which are produced from natural fibres in collaboration with artisans in Bangladesh. These collaborations support women's groups – contributing to the development of their communities.


Pla is centred on values of traditional craftsmanship, high quality, sustainability, simplicity, and small-scale production. The Illetes Woven Clogs and Boanova Woven Flats are both handmade with natural jute fibres by skilled artisans in Bangladesh. Each element of the process is done with human hands, from the cultivating and processing of robust jute fibres to the manual weaving of various parts of the shoes. 


Jute as a fibre is a sustainable choice as it is a resistant and biodegradable material, as well as a vital economy for many small farmers in the country – providing them with their livelihoods. Each shoe is slowly handmade with a single jute braid, which the artisans shape with incredible skill and intricate focus. Each turn of the braid is joined to the previous piece with hand stitches, and also stitched into a cotton lining that covers the interior of the shoe – guaranteeing comfort.     

Irene travels regularly to Bangladesh where she works alongside the artisans, supervising each of the details and the quality of the finish, in which comfort is as important as attention to detail. All this work is coordinated by Caritas Bangladesh, according to the Fair Trade Code of Practice. Afterwards, the shoes travel to Mallorca where the two-layer sole, composed of a thick layer of textile and natural crepe, is constructed and joined to the woven jute – making the tread very pleasant.


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