My favorite shoes are...
actually boots. They are mid calf, narrow toe,
ultra flat, whiskey brown Jil Sander boots. I got
them three years ago and they are
— Jill Schumacher
Interior designer. Rariden, Schumacher, Mio & Co., Birmingham
Jayme Kirschner talks about her obsession.
By Shelli Liebman Dorfman
n the world of fashion-conscious
Morrison dressy shoes with black ties that I
women, there are many who 'd love to
bought at Tender [in Birmingham]," she says.
walk a mile in Jayme Kirschner's shoes.
Along the footpath toward running her
gravitates to where shoes are sold. A special
own chic women's shoe store, Kirschner's
draw is textures, rich leathers and suedes. "I
feet have been the recipients of more shoes
also look for unique little details," she says.
than she can count.
"And I look for comfort because I'm on my
"I've always had a shoe fetish," says
used to squeeze my feet into anything. I like
chandising and design with minors in busi-
to think we are trendy enough to be offering
ness and fine arts from Western Michigan
our customers 'cutting-edge comfort."'
husband Jeff "is a shoe guy himself," she
Institute of Technology in New York City she
says. And while her son Garrett, 11 months,
was featured in a newspaper article because
is hard to fit, with feet "as fat as they are
of her fantastic buys. "They ran a photo of
wide," says his mom, daughter Sadie, 4,
me wearing a pair of knee-high Guatemalan
"has a fabulous shoe collection already."
Eight years ago, after working as a sales
My favorite shoes are my
cowboy boots with butterflies
and flowers that were handmade for
me by a Texas bootmaker in 1991.
— Jayme Kirschner
Co-owner, Imelda's Closet
shoes since her babysitting money would
allow, Kirschner maintains, "My own closet of
Angeles, Kirschner paired up with family
shoes isn't what you'd picture. I may buy
friend Patty Spadafore and opened Imelda's
new shoes every season, but I also give
Closet in Birmingham.
away about five or six pairs at a time to my
snob — Gucci loafers, Prada sandals,"
But for someone who's been shopping for
rep for various clothing companies in Los
"Pre-the-store I was more of a designer
In her West Bloomfield home, Kirschner's
during a semester studying at the Fashion
moccasins," she says.
feet all day at the store and as a mom. But I
Kirschner, who has a degree in fashion mer-
University in Kalamazoo. So much so that
'Color is the new black," says Jayme Kirschner, 1
Birmingham shop she co-owns. "Especially fall colors, i- c
like orange, green, any shade of brown, even purple.' i
And everyone needs cowboy boots, in fun, fabulous color s.
No matter where she shops, Kirschner
lucky cousin who wears my size," she says.
And that switch-over is half the fun. "I love
Kirschner says. "But we don't carry much in
that this business is always changing," she
the way of familiar brands. Instead we look
says. "People are happy when they're buying
for what the other stores aren't carrying, like
new shoes. I love that when it comes to
up and corner S. Edelman or labels that are
shoes you can wear anything. It's not like a
hot in Europe but haven't made it to the
handbag where you can tell if it's a designer
States yet — like Cordani, from Italy."
bag. With shoes you can't tell if they cost $48
Kirschner's personal collection almost
or $410. And another great thing about
exclusively includes shoes from her own
shoes: You never have to be on a diet to get
store, which also carries accessories and gift
into them." ❑
items. Exceptions to the "wearing what she
carries" rule include types of shoes her store
Visit Imelda's Closet at 123 Maple
doesn't sell, "like my beautiful Sigerson
Birmingham; (248) 203-1222.
JNPLATINUM • NOVEMBER 2005 •