Everybody's favourite flip flops, Havaianas celebrates its 50th this year. As ubiquitous as Vaseline, Topshop Baxters and Wayfarers, nothing says summer like a pair of Havianas - no wonder so many celebs from Jennifer Aniston to David Beckham love 'em, see gallery above for more!
Havaianas Flagship store, Sao Paulo
On my recent trip to Sao Paulo I popped into the massive Havianas store in the swanky Jardims area to get the inside story on Brazil's most famous export and to check out the rainbow colour ways and bling bar where you can get diamantes and beads added bespoke to your rubber thongs.
So the basics. The original 100% rubber Havaianas were invented in 1962 and were modelled on the Japaese Zori slipper which is why Havaianas have their distinctive textured rice pattern. Who knew? The brand was named Havaianas after the Hawaiian pleasure centred way of life (we knew there was a reason we liked them so much). Currently the Havaianas factory makes a whopping 206 million pairs are made every year.
Collaborations with Manolo B and Basso & Brooke
Dubbed the People's Shoe of Brazil - by the 80s Havaianas were so popular the government began monitoring their price along with rice to control inflation. Originially the flipflops were only available in two tone blue and white but luckily for us due a technical mishap meant a batch were dyed green and the resulting demand began the journey to the joyful multicoloured varieties we know today. By the 90s Havaianas had come to symbolise unpretentious style with celebs and wealthy socialites working the look.
Now everyone want to be a a Caroica (Portuguese for Rio native) and Rio dwellers have become knows as 'Havaianas people.' With a host of designer collaborations from Paul & Joe to Missoni, and the launch of sneakers and wellies in recent seasons, everyone can get their hands on a bit of Brazilian magic! So Many Happy Returns to Havaianas, long may your summer reign last!
The original blue/white colour way 50th Anniversary Edition, multicolours!