Grigore Lup, from the Transylvanian city of Cluj in Romania, has been making leather shoes for 39 years.
When the pandemic hit, the shoemaker, whose shop “relies heavily on custom orders from theatres and opera houses across the country, as well as traditional folk dance ensembles,” according to Reuters, saw his business impacted.
However, according to Lup, as restrictions eased across Europe, he realised that people weren’t taking social distancing seriously - so he came up with the lengthy shoes as a way for them to keep their distance.
"You can see it on the street, people are not respecting social distancing rules,” Lup told the outlet. “I went to the market to buy seedlings for my garden. There weren’t many people there but they kept getting closer and closer.