shuz; June/July 2005
Want to shop like the stars in the land of the loon? When well-known members of the film and music industry find themselves north of the border and have a hankering for something new, they get their fix at Gravity Pope. With three locations in Canada, the store's reputation and vast selection (more than 85 brands) brings in more than a few famous faces (and feet!). Sarah McLachlan, Aerosmith's Steve Perry, Neko Case and Lenny Kravitz dance to the beat of the original shop in Edmonton, while Michael Stipe and Jacob Dylan have been spotted getting a grove on at the Calgary store. And the Kitsilano Beach location, opened just last year on the West Coast, draws the gorgeous women of Hollywood - Selma Blair, Tori Spelling, Goldie Hawn, among them.
What makes them walk on air? Handpicked selections from all over the world, of course. Their stock comprises time-tested designers as well as emerging greats, and many labels are exclusive to the mini-chain. The list of stunning shoe offerings reads like a Fashion Week roster: Angeli Inquieti, Cydwoq, Etro, Hugo Boss, John Fluevog, Jubaki, Kenzo, La Femme, Mag, Moma, Paul Smith, Quick, Ras, Repetto, Trippen, and so many others are represented here.
Clients are equally varied. From anonymous shoe-hungry Web shoppers to stylish Canucks and celebrities, Gravity Pope caters to all. Savvy clerk Louise Dirks remembers a morning not long ago when the owner of a Canada wide clothing chain came rushing in, frantic to buy. “She required the attention of everyone around her,” Dirks says. “She was throwing shoes across the store, making comments like ‘These are so ugly… I’ll take them.’ After creating a great commotion, in a matter of fifteen minutes (while her limo driver waited out front), she walked out with twelve pairs of our most expensive shoes.” The irony, Dirks says, is that she began her retail career at one of the challenging customer’s stores. “Working there inspired me to open my business. And now, twenty-five years later, here she is shopping with me. Ah, the circle of life.” It calls for comfortable shoes.