PAKISTANI traditional songs,culture,folk stories and handicrafts of all provinces

Peshawari chappals --Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

Someone said that footwear highlights your personality and a costly dress can low down your personality if you are not wearing equally valuable footwear that could be the shoes, sandals, or a chappal.


Peshawar is the provincial capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa an old and historically very valuable city of Pakistan. If we break the whole word “PESHAWAR” in two parts it will just look, as “PESHA-WAR” (A city of skilled) is well-known for its different traditional products that like by everyone in the whole country.


A traditional product of Peshawar that is well-known due to its durability, designs, famousness, and a past history of more than hundred years is Peshawari Chappal. It belongs from the traditional and cultural symbols of that great city.t is the pride and joy of Pashtoons.  Wearing peshawari chappal became a tradition among Pathans ever since it evolved. They also like to wear it on special occasions like parties, Eid and wedding celebrations. It’s one of the most top-selling footwear of Pakistan and is the only one that the majority of Pashtoons are comfortable in. It has indeed become a souvenir of Khyber Pakhtoon Khwa and an identity of Pashtoons.  it is famous is because of it is very good for walking on the un-smooth areas especially good to walk on the hills and hard surface, etc.

Often called “Kheri”, Peshawari chappals make up a small scale business that provide a living to many shoemakers who spend their days busy in making, stitching and fitting the shoes.

This rough and tough footwear is worn by all over the Pakistan by the men. Nature gifted the human with great skills and anything, which is handmade, is unique due to its characteristics instead of a machine-made that will expire after a particular time. The most solid specialty of Peshawari Chappal is its long life. The material used to make these chappals is lather and rubber. The sole is made of hard rubber.


Peshawari chappal is as old as Peshawari culture. It is so old that its history is lost in ambiguity. The trend of wearing Peshawari chappal has emerged at least over a century ago. When asked, an aged maker of Peshawari chappal said, “It has been here longer than my memory recalls.”  The Peshawari chappal got its name from its origins: Peshawar.  Mardan, Charsadda, Swat and Peshawar in particular, are famed for manufacturing the best quality and most stylish Peshawari chappals.

Basically, this chappal is an open sandal in which two pieces of leather cut in a specific shape are joined diagonally. It has a strap at the back with a clip to open and close it while the toe remains open. These chappals are completely handmade and offer a large line of variety in color, design and shape.

Prior to 70s, this culture was limited to only Khyber Pakhtoon Khwa but soon after it gained acclaim all around the country. It was so popular among Pashtoons that they started carrying the chappals with them, where ever they used to go countrywide. Soon after, this chappal was well-accepted by the people of other provinces as well. Initially, Peshawar was the hub of manufacturing Peshawari chappal but nowadays, these are being made and worn all over the country. Many huge markets have been established in the main cities of Pakistan like Islamabad, Lahore and especially in Karachi and are doing a great business.


 A new trend in Pakistan witnessed the pairing of Peshawari chappal with jeans. This trend was also introduced by the iconic personality, Imran Khan. This was the major point for the boost of Peshawari chappals. This fashion was largely followed by the young generation during 1980s.

Since then, it is seen on the feet of many elite and fashion conscious and trendiest people.

The making process of this Chappal consisted on some phases. First the base of that chappal is prepared, which is its sole that is prepared with hard and rough rubber. The tyre of any heavy automobile can be used for that purpose. In the second phase its upper side is prepared, which is called the Upper. The upper is totally made with high quality leather. The upper and the sole are joined together in third phase with the help of glue, nails, and thread that is used for sew the leather all this process complete while the pair is bent on the wooden die. To give the more attraction to the chappal lastly polishing is done on the pair. Such a Peshawari Chappal is prepared.

Peshawari chappal has some distinct qualities which makes it better from other footwear. It is made of pure leather of high quality and is free from all types of chemicals. Due to this, one can never be affected by any type of skin infection or skin disease. The pure original leather prevents stench and makes it more comfortable. Thus it can never harm or cause discomfort to anyone’s feet that. Another quality that sets it apart from other footwear is its durability. In this day and age of high inflation, consumers want footwear that can be worn no less than a year.The chappal’s cutting, stitching and fitting; everything is done by the manufactures by their own hands and they strive to make the best possible pair of chappal.  Once a customer buys a pair and uses it carefully, it can last many years.

the durability of Peshawari chappal is better than any other footwear.”

Peshawari chappal gives both a traditional look on shalwar qameez and a trendy appearance when worn with jeans. This east-meets-west feature adds to its fame and due to the continuing increase in popularity, businessman have also made it easier to buy online especially for the people abroad. 



Nowadays, it is also worn on many festive occasions in Karachi like parties and wedding functions. Wearing Peshawari chappal on wedding day was merely and purely a Pakhtoon custom but now it has become a tradition even in Karachi. Boys wearing this footwear in Mehndi and Mayun functions are a common sight these days. In fact, most of the grooms also prefer to wear a pair of Peshawari chappal especially, a multicolored or golden one. Moreover, since recent times, people abroad wear them on traditional ceremonies with pride and as the symbol of their culture. By and large, they are also preferred in those parties where dress-code is more traditional like ghazal nights, mushaira etc.

Peshawari chappal is fundamentally associated with traditional occasions such as Eid. It is now considered as an important convention of Eid and buying a new pair of the chappal for Eid has become a widespread tradition in Pakistan. Hence, the sales of these chappals pick up around that time. The manufactures start preparing for Eid at least before two months as they do not get time to breathe during festive seasons. The whole stock, down to the last chappal, is sold out in that season. On the day of Eid, one can easily gauge its popularity. Hardly any man or boy goes for anything other than Peshawari chappal.  Men of all languages, ethnicities and cultures don them with shalwar qameez with ease and pleasure. Kids do not stay behind in fashion. A “Kids are fond of Peshawari chappal and they gladly wear them on Eid.”

Peshawari chappal is no longer restricted to any culture or age group; it is for all and loved by all. This significant part of a rich culture has largely been adopted by all other ethnicities that prevail in Pakistan; some consider an inherent part of their tradition, and others perceive it as a style statement.





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    PESHAWAR: A new sandal from designer Paul Smith based on a traditional Pakistani style has amused shopkeepers in its “hometown” Peshawar — both for its $500 price tag and what they say is its outdated look.

    Pakistan’s chattering classes took to social media on Monday to berate the fashion house for “stealing” the design of Peshawari chappals for its “Robert” sandal, priced at 300 pounds ($500).

    But in the markets of Peshawar, the rugged northwestern city from where the hardy chappal originates, shopkeepers were more concerned that the British designer known for his signature multicoloured stripe was behind the times.

    “This design is outdated. Some people in their 60s or 70s ask for that design sometimes,” Kamran Khalil of the city’s Shoe Shop told AFP.

    The high-gloss black leather, thin sole and open toe of the Paul Smith sandal have long been out of favour in Peshawar, Farhad Ullah, whose family have been making shoes in Peshawar for 70 years, explained.

    “My father used to make this design but I don’t make it any more as there is no demand for it,” he told AFP.

    “Only some retired military or police officials come and ask us to make it for them.” The chappal is ubiquitous in Pakistan, loved by all social classes for its comfort and durability, and normally sells for between $5 and $20 dollars.

    There was astonishment that the Paul Smith version, which comes with a thin neon pink stripe along the side, could cost so much more.

    “I’d say you’d have to be mad to pay 50,000 rupees for chappals, when you can get them for 1,500 to 2,000,” chappal-wearer Mansoor Khan, 46, told AFP.

    But Zahir Shah, 35, manager of the Style Collection chappal shop in Peshawar, defended the high price tag.

    “If you want to buy a cricket bat used by Shahid Afridi or Sachin Tendulkar, you have to pay millions for it,” he said.

    “The price is not high because of the wooden bat but due to the name of Afridi or Tendulkar, and so Paul Smith is selling his name.”

    After a day of Twitter outrage and an online petition, the Paul Smith website changed the product description to say the sandal was “inspired by the Peshawari chappal”.

    Khalil said Pakistan should be pleased that such a famous designer had been inspired by the traditional sandal — but urged Paul Smith to bring the design up to date.

    “I am proud that the traditional Pashtun shoe is now available in the west as fashion, but the designers should work more to bring the best and latest designs,” he said.

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