Tuesday, May 12, 2009
(shoo) is the definition of footwear: Unusual, hand-crafted, well-made, funky footwear for men & women.
Coming from a background in fashion merchandising, buying, & wholesale, Kate Blake created the cool shoe boutique that is (shoo). Realizing that there was a big need for different, hard to find, funky footwear, Kate decided to open up, in November 2005, literally in her own backyard, Milwaukee's Historic Third Ward. Combining her vast knowledge of the footwear industry, where she worked as a buyer, retailer & wholesaler, with her love of fashion and her own unique sense of style, Kate has brought a much needed shoe boutique to the heart of Milwaukee.
Kate chooses very carefully what lines she brings into the store. "I want to be the only game in town with the brand, preferably the only one in the state." Which is the case on some hard to find footwear lines like Trippen from Berlin, Germany or John Fluevog which is out of Canada. For those two lines (shoo) is the only dealer in Wisconsin. Other lines, like Cydwoq - shoes handmade in the United States, (shoo) is the only store in Milwaukee to boast the beautiful and architecturally inspired line. Other lines, like United Nude, Re-mix, Fornarina, Gordon Rush, Ryan Rowe & Tsubo are what make the shoe experience a unique one. "I buy what is comfortable, funky & different" & that is exactly the formula that goes into each shoe brought in from Spain, Italy, Brazil, Mexico, Germany, Austria, USA or the far East.
In January of 2007, Kate partnered with her younger brother, Pat Blake, who left the business of stock trading to team up & assist with running the shoe boutique. Between the two Blake siblings you can be assured that customer service is first & foremost, while getting the coolest shoes around in a very relaxing & comfortable atmosphere. "We want you to feel like your at home here." Pat states "we want to make this experience friendly, comfortable, & most of all enjoyable."
The hip shoe boutique has an interesting decor of old re-used tables, antiques, & what-nots from the Blake family ancestors, to give it that true homey feel. There are even old framed photographs throughout the store that their mother, Nancy Blake, a photographer, snapped of the two when they were kids. (shoo) has that family shoe store feel, with cool, hip merchandise that makes (shoo) a very unique place to shop.
The boutique is located inside the Katie Gingrass Gallery which is in the trendy Historic Third Ward, where other great boutiques, like Lela & Stephanie Horne compliment their funky footwear.
(shoo) is the definition of what footwear should be. It should be comfortable, funky, & different & be something that expresses who you are. (shoo) allows you to do that - be true to who you are, all the way down to your feet!