While a quick peak into Blue Soles Shoes’ showroom may appear to show the most stylish dress shoes a man could find in Philadelphia, Steve Jamison’s store offers much more to the average man than meets the eye. The store’s inventory includes products which meet the needs of every season, from light, casual, slip-on shoes perfect for summer wear, to the highest quality leather boots for keeping your feet warm and dry during the colder, wetter winter months. Additionally, Blue Sole carries a number of different styles and colors of shoes good for business, for upscale occasions, and for casual, everyday usage, with imported selections ranging from such countries as Italy, Spain, Portugal, England, Turkey and China, among others.
When Steve Jamison isn’t running his business, helping the community, and taking care of his family, he is often looking for inspiration for his men’s shoe store. Perhaps his biggest inspiration comes every year when he travels internationally to fashion-forward cities such as Florence and Milan. Every year, Jamison goes on buying trips while attending MICAM — the leading international footwear forum, held in Milan, Italy. During his travels to MICAM, Jamison will spend time with each designer, studying the brands and the new lines of footwear, joining shoemakers as they hand-make and hand-paint shoes, and orders a vast number of different styles of shoes to travel back to the States with. An incredible amount of his inventory comes from his time in Italy. More specifically, Jamison sees how men dress in cities like Florence and Milan, and compares it to how men dress back at home. Men take more risks regarding color and styling in Italy, and Jamison’s goal is to come home and encourage his followers to be more open to creative styles which they may not be privy to already, which opens Blue Sole Shoes up to being the most fashion-forward, unique men’s shoe store in Philadelphia. Jamison’s initiatives and inspiration are not only recognized in Philadelphia, though. In September of 2015, Jamison was recognized by the Association of Italian Footwear Manufacturers, and given their prestigious MICAM Best Foreign Buyer Award for his commitment to promoting gorgeous Italian footwear outside of Italy.
When Steve Jamison opened Blue Sole Shoes in February of 2007, after finally saving enough money to open his own shop, the store slowly developed over the first few years as the retail shopping district in Philadelphia itself began to develop. After nine years, however, Jamison’s store went through a major upgrade, which included renovations to the store’s facade with a massive picture window, exposing the store’s incredible inventory to people passing by. This was the second expansion which Blue Sole Shoes went through, as Jamison needed to upgrade his space to make room for more shoes, as well as new accessories, socks, bags and other products. The showroom floor got bigger, and in doing so, Jamison opened up his store to the ability to include much more inventory. Most recently, Blue Sole Shoes unveiled a huge upgrade to its website with a brand new e-commerce component for online shopping.
We are about way more than just shoes at Blue Sole Shoes, as we specialize in an array of accessories — from bags to socks to belts to cuff links and much more.
“When I’m asked my perspective on accessorizing, I tell them ‘to be expressive’ more than anything,” said owner Steve Jamison. “It doesn’t take a lot in terms of investment, nor does it take a lot in terms of thought. Sometimes, guys over-think accessorizing their look with color. I believe every man should consider taking things up a small notch before walking out the door most days, and I understand that sometimes men just like to play is safe and conservative once in a while, which I can absolutely relate to.”
Accessorizing is all in the details. You don’t always want to combine the same colors or textures. You really want a contrast in color, and possibly even go in a totally different direction. If you’re wearing something which may have a red base in your tie, we’d suggest a yellow sock with a hint of red to pull it all together.
We believe in always starting from the bottom and going up to the top in terms of accessorizing, beginning with the shoe you want to accessorize with specific socks and a smart belt. And despite what many fashion-forward men think, it doesn’t all have to match! It’s good to be in the same color range, but even the materials don’t have to be the same. We love mixing and matching! Leathers and suede make for a great look, and as long as everything compliments each other, such as a dressy shoe with a dressy belt, or a casual shoe and belt combination. If you’re thinking about shaking things up a bit and upgrading your personal style, we applaud you. When you’re feeling bold, be bold. And if we see you pulling off a risky move, we may even snap your photo and give you a shout-out on social media. Cheers!
Steve Jamison, owner and proprietor of Blue Sole Shoes, is offering a shoe shine service with both drop-off and in-house options for customers in need of a fresh look anytime during the week, as well as on Saturdays. On weekdays, Blue Sole Shoes will offer a drop-off service which costs $8 for shoes, and $16 for boots. Customers can expect either a same or next day turnaround for the drop-off option. On Saturdays, shoe shines will be completed in-house and will cost $5 for shoes, and $10 for boots. Blue Sole Shoes’ service comes full with an artisan shoe shiner, one who is a former Best of Philly winner and expert in his craft.