“Unique Soles for Unique Souls” – Fluevog Shoes
Vancouver Shoe God, John Fluevog, hosted a soleful soiree at his grand store in Gastown Wednesday night. My signature, flared-out heels clicked hurridly down the wet cobblestones of Water Street to get me to the party on time!
Clusters of red helium balloons stood sentry duty, and as I stepped inside this wonderland of a shoe store, my eyes lit up like sparklers as I could see (across the towering room) the man himself, dressed in a mauve sports jacket and chartreuse sweater, plaid bow tie and exuding his warm, charming smile. Surrounded by well-wishers, John greeted his fans and friends, all putting their best foot forward and celebrating with him on Fluevog Day, also Fluevog’s very own 65th Birthday!
Eldest Son Jonathan Fluevog with TJ Note
Devotees stood stylishly well-heeled, every one of us parading around in our finest funky footwear representing every collection and era, some enthusiastically sharing that they scooped their vintage, impossible-to-find Fluevogs on ebay, others flaunting delicacies from his most recent offerings. One thing was for sure, the common denominator was our collective love for his unique shoes and adoration for the man who’s latest magazine ad slogan states to non-wearers, “No, You’re Weird!” One of the little gifties I received in my swag bag was a set of robins’ egg blue shoelaces with an accompanying sticker that reads, “Embrace Peculiarity.” You’ve gotta love this man!
The highlight of my evening was having the opportunity to share my favorite shoe story with John Fluevog. Blushing a little, and slightly nervous (c’mon, this man designed my shoes for Heaven’s sake!) I spilled it out. On a whirlwind trip to New York Fashion week a few years ago, I picked up my black, pointy-toed “Coffee” collection cuties in his Soho shop, proceeded to a posh lunch at The Plaza Hotel, and took a leisurly horse and carriage ride around Central Park. Inspired by the quote inscribed on the bottom of my strappy slingbacks, “Take the time and do it right,” I was determined to check off a big “must” on my things-to-do-before-I-die list… So, I jumped into a taxi and drove through Wall Street and Chinatown until we arrived at my destination. The driver stopped the car and there it stood before me… I pulled in a deep breath, stepped out of my cab, and took a long, sunny stroll across the Brooklyn Bridge – Statue of Liberty to my right, The Empire State Building to my left – and dammit, my tootsies looked fantastic doing it! Once I was in Brooklyn, I jumped on the Subway back to Manhattan, mailed a postcard to my daughter at the Main Post Office across from Madison Square Garden, hoofed it to Times Square, and back to The Flatiron Hotel where I slipped into the lounge and toasted the day with a perfect Cosmopolitan. It was a dream come true, and I did it in my brand spanking new Fluevogs! And not one blister, only the teeniest scuff on one of my pebble leather toes serving as a keepsake of my Big Apple adventure! John was gracious and seemed to delight in my wistful anecdote.
Horse and Carriage Ride through Central Park
The night went on with beverages flowing and sole mates socializing, until it was time to put a lid on the shoebox. What a lovely way to spend an evening, mingling with footwear royalty and those who love his shoes. Superfan Cat Leigh was proudly laced up in her Frontier Hi Hudson boots – one of her seventeen pairs of Fluevogs. On why she has amassed such an impressive and obsessive collection, she says, “I love Fluevogs because the styles are just that little bit (or a lot) different. They don’t appeal to everyone and that appeals to me.” While Jaik, a long-time employee at Fluevog and loving every minute of it, sincerely shared that Fluevog is an ultra supportive and encouraging employer – even more reasons to love the man behind the leather and laces.
A couple in their matching Fluevogs
Jaik and friend
As for me, I have my heart set on the emerald green Elizabeths with the sexy wooden heel resembling a decadently scrolled chair leg. A perfect size 7, please. The price tag is not for the faint of heart, but make no mistake, these are works of art and worth every penny. You will be mine my little lovelies… I believe in The Shoe Fairy… and I believe in Fluevogs!
For more of John Fluevog’s amazing story, click on the above photo, and read the history that has made Fluevog into what it is today.
Photographs by Jacqueline Ryan