In 1887, 17-year-old Italian immigrant Salvatore Capezio moved to New York to sell theatrical shoes, opening his first shop near the old Metropolitan Opera House. Of course, he quickly found himself dealing with the intense demands of the professional dancers that frequented the store, and Capezio began challenging himself to master the delicate balance and construction of pointe shoes. By the 1930s, his designs carried dancers across the stages of Broadway, and innovations bearing his name continue to appear today in such television and film productions as Dancing with the Stars and Black Swan. Committed to the needs of performers in dance, theater, and recreation, the Capezio team continues to fulfill young Sal's legacy by crafting footwear for ballet, tap, and ballroom dancing, and gymnastics.
Szabo Shoes has been serving the feet of Cleveland-area residents for more than 80 years, building on the knowledge and service ethic of a bygone era to become the weight-bearing institution that they are today. Their wide selection houses everything from fashionable heels to orthopedic foot-savers, including popular brands such as Merrell, Timberland, Saucony, Converse, Clarks, and Columbia, to name just a few. Prices vary but hover around mid-range; a pair of Converse sneakers and men's Columbia sandals are both $39.95, leopard-print mary janes from Alegria cost $109.95, and a pair of sandals from Taos toe in at $89.90. Should you wish to exceed your $65 Groupon credit, simply pay the difference at the store. Szabo is also a depot for shoe-related-difficulty relief, as they carry numerous hard-to-find sizes and widths for both women and men.
Hipster’s showcases posh pint-size wares and gifts to convert growth-spurt-fueled wallet drainage into a pleasant exercise in fashion recycling. Fill youngsters' wardrobes with tenderly donned designer shirts ($3–$6), shoes ($3–$6), pants ($5–$7), and jammies ($3–$4), or treat toddlers to an array of barely used sitting devices such as highchairs ($30+) and bouncy seats ($12+). The locally owned shop stocks a spectrum of sizes to fit kids ages 12 and under, ensuring that by the time children no longer fit into Hipster's ensembles, malls will finally take the form of convenient holograms. If shoppers become inspired to consign their own used items, the store will allow them to track their accounts with an online service or a footprint expert.
After winning CityVoter and Fox 8's Best Designer Jewelry award in 2007, the husband-and-wife team behind Fashion Jewelry Superstore continues to seek out the latest fashion trends and ways to offer designer-inspired pieces at affordable prices. Tanya Shephard travels the country handpicking jewelry and accessories to fill the cases and shelves within the 4,000-square-foot store that she and husband Todd own. They specialize in creating name-brand looks for less, such as Vera Bradley–inspired budget-friendly bags and backpacks, as seen in Mimi Vanderhaven magazine, and a collection of Venetian beads comparable to and compatible with Pandora jewelry.
In addition to purses, scarves, hats, belts, and fashion and costume jewelry, Tanya displays the talents of local jewelry makers with an in-house artisan boutique, which features “dozens of one-of-a-kind handcrafted pieces.” Tanya and her team also set up consultations for wedding-accessory planning and private parties for a girls' shopping night or a troop of kangaroos looking to increase storage space with trendy shoulder bags.
West End Blenz's nutrition gurus forge fresh fruits and healthy supplements into a selection of 25 smoothies. Flavors range from traditional strawberry and banana to protein-packed Bulk & Muscle smoothies, which can be sipped before the shop's community self-defense classes or attempts to bench-press the counter.