September’s obsession: German slippers

September’s obsession: German slippers

by Anna Bagiackas
Stripes Europe

Although September can lean more towards summer weather, there are usually a few chilly nights that offer a preview of the colder weather to come with autumn. And with those dropping temperatures, I pull out my German wool slippers and welcome them like an old friend.

Living in Germany, many of us quickly realized that carpet flooring was less common than what we are used to in the States. Instead, German houses have lots of tile and wood floors—great for cleaning, less great for being on your feet all day. For warmer summer months, I invested in a pair of Birkenstock sandals to wear around the house—my summer slippers. But in the fall, winter and early spring, my German wool slippers have become an essential.

My favorite slippers come from Haflinger. While I bought my first pair at a specialty shoe store in the States, I recently learned about their German background. Named after the Haflinger mountain horse, this company is based in the German city of Goslar in the Harz Mountains, about 3 hours and 30 minutes from Frankfurt and 2 hours from Leipzig. Although the family has been making high-quality socks and slippers since 1898, their brand Haflinger wasn’t created until 1988 and word quickly spread. The slipper company is now well-known around the world.

The story goes that Emil Otto, the original textile master of the company, was wearing a pair of their popular socks when he stepped outside the door of a ski lodge in Austria after a snack during a ski holiday. Quickly, the socks soaked through from the wet snow and the moment inspired the creation of their slipper, which would keep anyone’s feet dry and warm.

I can attest that my feet are both dry and warm. Not only that, but my feet feel supported when I’m on my feet all day in the tile-floored kitchen. Although I mourn the end of summer and my sandal-wearing days, I can’t help but anticipate putting on some cozy socks and slipping my feet into my German slippers for the day when colder temperatures arrive.

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