By Marlena Chavira-Medford
If you think good arch support is synonymous with clunky clogs, think again. Avenue Shoes is proof that orthopedic shoes can be sleek, chic and stylish. Whether you’re in the market for a pump, boot, or sandal, Avenue Shoes has it, and here, it will be comfortable.
Sharada Balachandra owns the shop with her son Chetan. She said she was inspired to open Avenue Shoes after researching some of her own foot pains, only to learn that a partial culprit was under her nose, quite literally.
“Part of the problem is the concrete we walk on every day,” she explains. “In other parts of the world, roads are not paved so people are still walking on natural earth, and often they’re doing it barefoot. Here, however, we are constantly walking and running on hard concrete. Over time, that takes a toll on the body. So, we carry shoe brands that help the body cope with that.”
Case in point: Masai Barefoot Technology (MBT) shoes, which were designed by an engineer who discovered that after walking barefoot in a paddy field his back pains were eased.
“All of the shoes we carry here blend technology, comfort, and style,” she said. “All of the shoes offer optimum arch and toe support, and they’re all shoes you actually want to wear out. So when you buy a shoe here, it’s an investment in your wardrobe and your health.”
Other high-end lines carried at Avenue Shoes include Munro, Dansko, Mephisto — just to name a few examples. And should you need a belt or handbag to go with those new shoes, the in-store boutique has you covered.
“Although Avenue Shoes is a full-service shoe store featuring comfort fashion shoes, we have a nice variety of accessories, jewelry, and more that would make fabulous holiday gifts,” Chetan adds.
Avenue Shoes is one of the only North County resellers of Crabtree & Evelyn body products, it carries an assortment of handbags from Baggallini, Big Buddha, Icon, Anuschka, and soon Vera Bradley. There’s also fine jewelry from Holly Yashi and Potluck Paris, as well as an assortment of hats, scarves, and more.
“ Avenue Shoes is more than just shoes, and there is a lot to discover and enjoy,” he said.
Avenue Shoes has a location in La Jolla (called Avenue Shoes Gallery) at 7852 Girard Avenue, which can be reached by calling (858) 551-9985; and a Solana Beach location at 111 S. Cedros Avenue, which can be reached by calling (858) 720-0087.