Last week while browsing through the Victoria's Secret website, I came across what I considered to be the most perfect pair of canvas slip-on sneakers ever. Forget Vans. The Kitson sneakers were witty, fun, and cute. The more I looked at them, the more levels I found to appreciate them on. The sneakers were not perfect mirror images of each other like almost every other pair of shoes in the world, but rather complemented each other in their red trim and beige background while looking totally different. One shoe had sequined palm trees and the word "kitson" on it while the other said "LA hotter than caliente." As the girlfriend of a wonderful Mexican guy, I loved how the shoe had a message in Spanglish, and as an English major, I loved the internal imperfect rhyme in that wonderful left-shoe line. I vowed to myself that come Victoria Day, I would drive across the border with friends and make a pilgrimage to Victoria's Secret, just to find my perfect sneakers.
Well, serendipity works in strange ways, and I actually ended up finding them at Joneve Shoes while shopping along South Granville with my friend Jordana. I still remember that wonderful moment when my eye roved over the display shelves, landed on the Kitson sign, and just to the right of that, there it was--the right shoe put out for display purposes. After trying them on in 6 and finding that they were too tight across the front of my foot, I settled on 6.5 and walked out of that store a happy camper.
Kitson is not a well-known brand in Vancouver, and by well-known I mean Lululemon/TNA-esque proportions. When I looked up Kitson with a quick Google search later on, I found out from www.shopkitson.com that Kitson is a hip streetwear and lifestyle boutique in LA that has been operating for about 6 years already. It's apparently frequented by celebrities and It girls, and has its own line of clothing as well as footwear. I've never seen any other girl wear Kitson sneakers while out and about, and up until a week ago I had no idea it existed, so the sneakers totally felt like my own cool-girl, trendsetter discovery (I am such a dork, I know). I felt even cooler after talking with the store manager as we returned to Joneve so Jordana could purchase a Guess wallet that she had been contemplating.
Me: You should display both shoes in your merchandising. Half the appeal in those shoes is the way they're completely different.
Manager: I know! You know, I didn't even know they were completely different until you bought them, and the girl came to the back and showed them to me and said, "Did you know these are completely different?" Now I'm definitely going to have to find a way of displaying them both.
Imagine being the manager of a shoe store and not knowing your own merchandise! To be fair, shoe stores have high seasonal turnover and salespeople can't be expected to know everything, but you'd think they would know if a pair of shoes had completely different left and right shoes. Hey, if I work in a toy store and I'm expected to know where something is made, whether the plastic contains PVC, and how to install an adjustable cupholder on a stroller, they should know their shoes.
But I digress. Below are some pics of Kitson's non-matching canvas slip-ons, including a pic of the ones I got, so you can admire the wit and detail of these shoes. Enjoy!