I have never been without my trusty pair of Jandals the staple footwear in summer time – some people have even been known to wear them with socks in the winter time – although this is definitely not a fashion statement which has caught on!
In 1957 a man called Morris Yock of Onehunga in Auckland, North Island of New Zealand, produced a version of the Japanese sandal in his garage, proudly named it ‘The Jandal’, and trademarked it. New Zealanders took to Yock’s Jandal brand with such fervour, that the word ‘Jandal’ has become a fully-fledged noun, part of our everyday language.
In our beautiful island nation with the long hot summers spent at the beach the Jandal is the most popular piece of footwear in most New Zealanders wardrobe and something of a cultural icon.
Although the word Jandal is an abbreviation of ‘Japanese Sandal’, it is actually a trademark of the Skellerup Company – one of the earliest manufacturers of the modern design – and, as such, is rarely used outside New Zealand.
Most other countries refer to them as ‘Flip Flops’, except in Australia, where they are called ‘Thongs’.