Read the true story behind the "Norwegian!"

J.P. Myhre

New Member
Dear Gentlemen,
You will find the true and interesting story behind the Norwegian loafer at my new website! Please, see submenu "Sign of the times" under the "Firm" in the menu. Hope you enjoy it!


Super Member

Nice web site.

However, I didn't find the story, nor did it seem intuitive for me to find
I have a slow internet connection, and lost patience.

I wish you would post the story on the Ask Andy forum, even though it
is probably very appropraite to have it on your site as well.

All I found was a reference to buckskin moccasins.


Starting Member
I got sidetracked by the pictures of the gorgeous shoes, but I later found the story, right where he said it was. Interesting.

J.P. Myhre

New Member
The "Norwegian" tail!

Dear Gentlemen,
Enjoy your reading! I hope you find your way to my website in despite of this exception at;

More than hundred years a go, people in Aurland were making and wearing shoes called "Teser", or "Snaukoppar". Teser were normally used indoors, but also outside if weather allowed. That type of shoe was in use until the beginning of the 1900 century. Teser were the origin of the Aurland shoe (Aurlandsskoen), which in a later stage of development eventually became the "Weejun".

By the end of the 1800 century Aurland was a prime location for anglers. It was first of all officials and English lords who visited the beautiful Valley of Aurland, situated in Sognefjorden. The English anglers, locally called the Lords of Salmon, often brought their entire families along to Aurland. At that time, two local shoemakers named Vebjørn S. Vangen and Andreas S. Vangen started to take orders for handmade shoes. The two local shoemakers were quite busy making shoes for the English anglers and their families. Nils Tveranger was the first to start production of the style of shoe we today call Aurlandskoen. He came to the valley in 1894 and started to develop the shoe in 1908. That same year he had the style patented. After a long and hard start the shoe came out on the market and it was well received. Tveranger continued the production of the shoe in his home, which led to work for other craftsmen like Gustav Nesbø and Kristian Ohnstad.

Aurland now had a small industry, which proved to be crucial to the local community - and the world for that matter! The eventual style of the shoe was created in the 1920´s. It was then the shoemakers started to pull the upper leather from the bottom of the last and up over the top. A piece of leather was adjusted, cut to fit and sewn in by hand. This part of the shoe was locally called "Bjore", which later became the world known expression "Norwegian", and which is recognized by the hand stitched piece on the front foot and toe. Aurlandskoen was about to become very well recognized abroad and the English anglers were the bridge builders, so to speak. The shoe was a great success, partly because already in 1888 it was received at the world exhibition in Chicago and later in Paris. At an exhibition in Bergen in 1910, the shoe won 1st. prize.

In the United States of America the shoe received its pet name "Weejuns", which confirms both the stories and the origin. After world war two the production increased through the 1950´s and reached its peak in the mid 60´s. At the time, there were ninety persons employed in twelve different workshops at Vangen and two in Flåm. Aurlandskoen was now widely known and variations were produced in many parts of the world. Thanks to the tradition of the "penny loafer" the fame of the shoe spread even wider. A penny attached to the front of the shoe means you are going steady with someone, so stay away - no penny signals you are available!


Super Member
Thank You!

Guess it was right there all along. I must've been sleepy when I couldn't find it. Anyway, thank you for filling us in on that fascinating bit of history!

Your site is wonderful.


Site Creator/ Administrator
Staff member

I can't find any thing on the site. I have to admit the two things I most hate even though they are "pretty" is reverse (big black areas) and flash! :(

I can't see anything that links. Just a photo of a shoe and you and a shoe.

There are some hidden links (no words to tell you what they are) at the top, but I can't find much there either.

??? Help

J.P. Myhre

New Member

What can I say? Everybody who has made their own website know that it is impossible to meet every single users computer requirements and point of standing when it comes to hardware and software. The only true thing I have experienced about users/computers is that the level of technical knowledge and urge for being updated follow each other closely. It would be quite unsensible to make a website which is made for yesterday. Who can argue with that?
It is possibly a discussion the world should have taken with Apple and Microsoft in the 1970´s. Please, advice me?


Super Member
Life in the slow lane...

J.P. Myhre said:
It would be quite unsensible to make a website which is made for yesterday. Who can argue with that?
Ah, well, I can argue with it. I have no problem arguing with it.

You are a merchant, and you hope to reach potential clients. Some of them may choose to spend their money on shoes, instead of new computers and incessant software/hardware updates.

New Media magazine shocked the world of web designers back in the middle 1990's. They told designers that if their sites didn't look right in Netscape Navigator 2.0, they might as well start looking for another line of work.

Don't know how many users have stuck with Navigator 2.x in the years since, but the concept is spot on.

If you can't read your web site using antiquated browsers, then a whole lot of potential clients will gladly shop elsewhere.

Anybody wishing to sell products needs to understand that there continue to be people browsing the web on Commodore computers (I'm pretty sure Die Hard magazine is still in print). People use web phones, and God only knows what other kinds of web browsers for Unix, Xenix, Linux, VAX, Palm, BeOS, Mac OS, Dr DOS, Newton OS, BSD, etc. etc. etc.

I use a very old copy of Claris Home Page for the tiny bits of web design I dabble with. Not practical for most, but good enough for me. Best of all, I know most people can read it. Besides, Claris Home Page looks very tradly on my old fashioned G3 (Mac OS 9.2), and my PC (Windows 98se).

DHTML, Flash, XML, etc. are great if you're on a company network, and are able to dictate what hardware is used to access said network.

I'll stick with good old Debabelizer 1.7, Acrobat 4.0, and Quick Time 3.0 when saving content for the web. Again, I want as many computers as possible to be able to display my site properly.

Go ahead, and call me old fashioned. I'm a dinosaur. At least now I know why I couldn't read the content on your web site the first time.

Good call, Andy!
Last edited:

J.P. Myhre

New Member

Dear Gentlemen,
I am sorry if I have offended anyone with my Flashes. Good intentions is just an illusion as everything else created by humans. Can anyone argue with that? Please, advice me?


Honors Member
J.P. Myhre said:
I am sorry if I have offended anyone with my Flashes.

Certainly no offense taken here. I could view the site with no problems (Mac OS 10.4.6, Firefox Nicely done. :icon_smile:


Super Member
Just some friendly advise.

J.P. Myhre said:
Dear Gentlemen,
I am sorry if I have offended anyone with my use of Flash. Good intentions are just an illusion (as with everything else created by humans). Can anyone argue with that? Please advise.

No offense taken. My previous post was intended as friendly advise, and not
any major complaint.

The flash presentation is actually very good.

And I loved reading the fruits of your research into the history of the
"weejun" loafer.

Well done!

Keep up the good work!


Senior Member
Web design

People go to your site for information about your shoes, not to get blown away by the latest and greatest in web site design.

If you want to maximize the number of (satisfied) visitors to your site, keep it simple.

If you want to frustrate visitors and potential customers use Flash.

It is really that easy.
Your email address will not be publicly visible. We will only use it to contact you to confirm your post.



Trad Store Exchange