On Saturday morning, I drove to Clark & Co. hair salon to pick up one of the most delicious caramel cakes you’ll ever put in your mouth (that’s another story for another blog) and walked past the Red Door Shoe Outlet.
Peering in the window, my eye caught a complete section of darling espadrilles and a sign: yellow dot $29, red dot $39, green dot $49. I love espadrilles and wedge sandals for the summer.
Curious??? Well, it’s smack dab in the middle of Green Hills! Harlin Whitley (a proud Hillsboro High School graduate) owns Red Door Shoes and designs shoes under the label of Mariana. Not only are the shoes manufactured with a green environmental consciousness: they are darn cute. When asked to explain the green angle, it is all about using vegetable dies and their impact on the earth. The process makes the leather soft and malleable; all of the Brazilian factories are certified.
Harlin has been in the shoes business forever, cutting his teeth at Genesco. As a wholesaler, he sells to 400 boutiques across the US, one of them being POSH. Because of his many contacts, he is continually getting overruns from all over the country. In fact, he has an entire wall of shoes left over from the now defunct Graces. If someone needs to move inventory, (including purses, clothing and jewelry), they’re likely to call Harlin.
As he walked me through the store, he paused at a display of men’s shoes. “Look at the lines of these shoes,” he mused, “They look like Cole Haan, don’t they? That’s because they are made from the exact same molds in a factory that used to produce Cole Hahn. Basically, they are the exact same shoe.” Except that they cost $49.00!!!
Again, back to the curious question of, “How can you sell shoes so inexpensively?” (There is an incredible amount of goods being sold in this town that are truly high quality at really low prices.) Harlin explained to me that last September was D-Day and the markets became flooded with so much unsold inventory that you could buy for Pennies on the dollar. Harlin’s sources=low prices for us. The continual foot traffic from Rebecka Vaughan and Brushfire Pottery has made Red Door Shoe outlet an instant success.
Shipments arrive daily, like the case of Anne Klein shoes being unpacked when I was there. There is a backroom with only sample sizes and last shoes in the run for $15-$19.
With prices so low, buy some shoes, then treat yourself to lunch in the Hill Center. Lunch may cost more than your shoes!
Red Door Shoe Outlet
(In the Calico Corner strip mall)
4004 Hillsboro Road
Monday – Saturday 10A-5:30PM