HISTORY OF THE PANAMANIAN CUTARRA
The cutarra is a type of sandal handcrafted from leather. The traditional cutarras are composed of 100% raw beef leather and are made by the live craftsman directly on the foot and this is called Cutarra Folklorica.
It has not been documented exactly how cutarras arise; However, oral tradition tells us that cutarras appeared for the first time in Panama with the arrival of the Spanish, who introduced livestock farming to the lands of the Azuero peninsula. The farmers of that time—probably all indigenous—took advantage of the new abundance of leather to make comfortable, durable footwear that would withstand the difficulty of field work. It is believed that the word "cutarra" was inspired by a chief named Antataura (whose other name was Cutatara or Cutara), who upon the arrival of the Spanish ruled indigenous tribes in Parita.
As the centuries passed, the cutarras changed according to the needs of the people and availability of materials. However, as there were no major modifications in their design and shape, they became the most traditional footwear in Panama, predominantly male. The cutarras are part of the male folklore clothing of Panama.