nvdaily.com link to home page

Traffic | Weather | Mobile Edition
Archives | Subscribe

Local News arrow Business arrow Frederick County arrow Health arrow Winchester

| 0 | 0 Comments

Solely Comfort soothes your foot and your fashion sense

View larger image

Shari and Dana Kowasic ring up a pair of shoes at their shoe store, Solely Comfort Footwear, in Winchester. Sally Voth/Daily

View larger image

A sampling of shoes for sale at Solely Comfort Footwear in the Creekside Station Shopping Center on Valley Avenue in Winchester. Sally Voth/Daily

By Sally Voth - svoth@nvdaily.com

The name says Solely Comfort Footwear, but that doesn't mean fashion has to be missing.

Shari and Dana Kowasic opened the high-end, be-kind-to-your-feet store last fall in the Creekside Station Shopping Center in Kernstown.

Mrs. Kowasic said their primary focus was "fashion-forward footwear, but healthy footwear."

Rather than the "old-lady" orthotic shoes of the past, Solely Comfort offers a variety of flats, sandals, flip-flops, wedges, slides, heels, clogs, athletic shoes and more in a variety of colors and styles.

"We can make your feet look pretty, but also less harmful, too," she said.

Most of the shoes Solely Comfort carries are designed to support the arch of the foot. Orthotics and footbeds to place inside shoes are also sold.

The boutique has a digital foot scanner that gauges arch depth, shoe size and pressure points, Mrs. Kowasic said.

"The computer makes recommendations on the types of orthotic that would be most appropriate for you," she said.

Among the brands the store carries are Jambu, Birkenstock, Ecco, Born, Mephisto, Naot, Aetrex, Taos, Sanita, New Balance, Soft Spots and El Naturalista.

There's a reason women's shoes vastly outnumber men's.

"It's because women like their choices," Mrs. Kowasic said. "Men, it doesn't matter as much. I'm just very proud of the selection we have. We have so many styles. We have a tremendous collection."

More men might be interested in the store in the adjacent shopfront, Battlefield Boots, which the couple just opened a few months ago. It carries work, duty, western and sport boots and shoes.

Kowasic had owned Bull Run Boots in Manassas before moving to Arizona, where he sold various boots and comfort shoes similar to what Solely Comfort sells.

"My forte is this side," he said. "Guys cannot pick stylish shoes for a lady."

Kowasic also had owned a shoe store in Warrenton that was started by his late wife's grandfather, but has since sold it to his son, a fifth-generation cobbler.

Mrs. Kowasic had been working as a registered nurse at Winchester Medical Center before joining her husband in business.

Besides over-the-counter orthotics, the Kowasics can do molds for customization and they can also modify shoes. For instance, they can stretch shoes, including in areas where bunions protrude, can build up the sole of a shoe, can adjust shoes following the amputation of toes, or adjust a shoe to accommodate a brace.

"[We see] lots of customers with plantar fasciitis," Kowasic said. "There's really no arch support [in shoes today]. A lot of them are going barefoot."

They also sell diabetic-certified footwear, as well as specialized insoles and socks for diabetics.

"If you take care of your feet and provide the proper foundation, it translates up the body," Mrs. Kowasic said. "Just makes you feel so much better from your feet up."

Proper alignment and good arch support are beneficial to your ankles, knees, hips and back, she said, and Solely Comfort works closely with physical therapy offices and podiatrists.

Coffee and tea are offered to patrons, the walls are painted in soothing earth tones, classical music wafts through the space and a mural on the back wall features Raphael's cherubs. The Kowasics try to keep the comfortable shoe and the boot stores distinct, with differing decor, and country music playing in the latter store.

Solely Comfort plans to have a trunk show this fall, featuring sneak previews of the Naots line. Customers can then order them at a discounted price, Mrs. Kowasic said.

Her husband credits her for the store's inspiration.

"This was her brainchild," he said. "She came up with a name a year before we even opened up."

The store is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 10 a.m .to 7 p.m. Friday, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.

For more information, visit solelycomfort.com. The store is also on Facebook.

Leave a comment

What do you think?

(You may use HTML tags for style)


Comments that are posted on nvdaily.com represent the opinion of the commenter and not the Northern Virginia Daily/nvdaily.com. If you feel that a comment is objectionable, please click on the Report Abuse link above and in your e-mail to us include the comment. We will review the reported comment and make a decision on deleting it if we feel that it contains inappropriate content.


Look Who 'Likes' nvdaily!

Daily readers: Click the "LIKE" button above to get Daily news and breaking news alerts on your Facebook page.

Activity & Recommendations

Local News Sections

Agency on Aging Agriculture Apple Blossom Festival Aviation Basye Berryville Boyce Breaking News Briefs Business Charities Civil War Clarke County Colleges Corrections Courthouse Notes: Permits, Transactions Courts & Legal News Crime & Public Safety Economy and Jobs Edinburg Education Edward N. Bell Election 2012 Entertainment Environment Fairs & Festivals Fire & Rescue Fishers Hill Fort Valley Frederick County Front Royal George Washington National Forest Guest Column Hard Times Health History Homes In The Spotlight Ledger Livestock Local Markets Maurertown Media Middletown Military & Veterans Moms Mt. Jackson New Market Page County Pets & Animals Politics Quicksburg Religion RSW Jail School News Shenandoah County Shenandoah Farms Volunteer Fire Department Star Tannery State Stephens City Strasburg Toms Brook Traffic & Transportation Utilities Valley 911 Warren County Weather West Virginia Winchester Woodstock Year in Review

News | Sports | Business | Lifestyle | Obituaries | Opinion | Multimedia| Entertainment | Homes | Classifieds
Contact Us | NIE | Place a Classified | Privacy Policy | Subscribe

Copyright © The Northern Virginia Daily | nvdaily.com | 152 N. Holliday St., Strasburg, Va. 22657 | (800) 296-5137

Best Small Daily Newspaper in Virginia!

nvdaily.com | seeshenandoah.com