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Great news in shoes

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For women who like style, comfort and convenience, look no further than Galibelle – a great concept in convertible shoes.

What makes them unique? Well, all the boots you see above are variations on the black bootie (second row, centre). That’s right. The fringe detail is removable. The tall leg of the boot, interchangeable. All are added to the basic bootie.

Incroyable!

By far, though, the biggest sellers are the sassy sandals, in a great range of styles.

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You start with a base (left) and add the straps you want – choose from dozens of colours and textures. The straps are easy to pop on and off, which means you can have several ‘different shoes’ just by changing the straps.

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They are affordably priced, so that you can buy many different straps, depending on the occasion and need. With padded insoles, these lightweight shoes are comfortable to wear all day!

Best of all, if you travel you need only carry one or two bases with a variety of straps that pack flat.

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Visit Canada’s first Galibelle boutique on Whyte Ave and 106 Street, or check them online at galibellecanada.com.

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Outlets a step-wise approach

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Recently, both Nordstrom Rack and Saks Off 5th announced store openings in Edmonton. Nordstrom Rack will open next fall at South Edmonton Common, while Saks Off 5th will open two stores – one at South Edmonton Common this fall, and one in north Edmonton next year.

Some are disappointed that the full-line ‘big sisters’ are not (yet) planned for Edmonton – but I believe this is a very strategic approach.

Edmonton is a metro area of more than one million people. As Canada’s most northern provincial capital, Edmonton is a shopping destination for northern residents in BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan and the Northwest Territories. This catchment area makes Edmonton a great location for retailers.

But the kinds of provisions people buy here tend to be more practical than trendy. Costco, for example, operates a half-dozen stores in the Edmonton area alone. We’re a hardy people; frugal and no-nonsense, in many ways.  People here like big savings.

This is why I believe that opening with off-price stores will pay off for Saks and Nordstrom – and maybe one day we’ll see full-line stores here, too.

These off-price stores will help introduce people to a broader range of designer brands than are currently available in this market. Doing this at an affordable price point will be very attractive to people here, and can potentially set the stage for more expensive tastes in future, should full-line stores arrive.

We have a lot of catching up to do in order to embrace top designer labels. Until that happens, people here will scour the off-price stores and continue to do their designer shopping online or in the US.