Claire Flowers traveled quite a bit for work. As a woman on the go, she was throwing away her pumps every three to four weeks. They just couldn’t handle the stairs, escalators and rough pavement that were everyday parts of her lifestyle. Frustrated with the lack of shoes on the market that were comfortable, fashionable and durable, Flowers set out to make a shoe that was.
“Initially, I was just going to find a manufacturer to make me 10 pairs of shoes, but there weren’t any here in the States,” she says. “Abroad, I found out the minimum order number was too high.”
However, as Flowers’ friends and family started hearing about her mission, they expressed interest in a similar product. Eventually, she had a big enough order to get one run of shoes manufactured.
In December 2014, she launched her first round of production at an event in St. Louis’ Central West End. The debut collection featured a classic pump shape with a 3½-inch heel in a variety of colors and was a success. The line of shoes includes features like memory foam insoles, heel caps to protect the wearer from getting stuck in grates, treaded nonslip soles and even protective heel plates.
Over the past few years, she focused on high heels and kitten heels. This fall, however, she’s expanding the line to include flats, boots and loafers. Those interested in being the first to see and purchase the new line can attend a launch event at 5:30 p.m. Aug. 24 at Union Station. To learn more and RSVP, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition to shoes, Flowers has created a line of leather dresses with the same mindset. She wanted a dress that could transition from work to play and that would travel well. She created a timeless leather shift dress with a removable, washable satin lining to avoid leather cleaning costs. Once exclusively custom-made, her dresses are now ready to wear and are sold at the Fur and Leather Centre. In 2018, she plans to expand into different types of apparel, like shirts, and to mix textiles with the leather.
Whatever she’s working on, Flowers has made it her mission to make sure it’s quality, durable, comfortable and fashionable. As her brand continues to grow, she isn’t slowing down. With a focus on timeless quality fashion over trendy fads, Flowers is certainly putting her best foot forward.
Claire Flowers, 314-485-7137, claireflowers.com