GUELÉ POLENG ESPADRILLES
One of the things that drew my attention to when I first arrived to Bali, was a feeling of comfort, a mixture of security and kindness, tolerance and acceptance of who is different with a naturalness that is not often seen everywhere.
Immediately it reminded me of Nepal, as a sort of “Nepal by the sea” with the differences that this implies, but with their common points.
On the way to the “villa” that we rented, a second thing called my attention: like in Nepal and many other places, I saw small temples and statues “dressed” with colored fabrics, especially red, gold, white and yellow, but In this case, they were covered by another fabric with a pattern of black and white stripes / squares, which we usually call “Vichy”. It was not a sporadic statue covered by this two-tone fabric, on the contrary, almost all the statues and small temples at the entrance of the houses, wore this fabric, either on another color fabric, as in some cases directly on the stone. The size of the squares could vary greatly, but always were black and white. When I asked, they told me that this was to protect them, but I could not figure out exactly from what.
Later, traveling between the rice fields flooded with water, I could see a man performing rituals in his field temple (normally all fields have a small temple where they can perform it) and before beginning to do it it, He weared on his “sarong” with the black and white “Vichy”, such as the temples and statues.
That fabric is called “Saput Poleng”, which literally means “two-color” clothes, but in Bali, unless you specify that it is a garment of two other colors, it refers to black and white.
I took a piece (and some sarongs) of that fabric with the idea of making some espadrilles that also protect the walk of our customers as in Bali they protected the sacred. This is how this variant of the Guelé model with the Saput Poleng arose.