There is talent to be named when it comes to Canada’s fashionable people. Let’s introduce the Alberta-born Louise Dirks, owner and operator of Gravity Pope.
Those of you who have yet to venture into the heart of Edmonton’s shopping district, Whyte Avenue, shame on you! Gravity Pope is an independently owned boutique in Canada that carries a wide range of carefully chosen, unique and beautiful authentic collections of footwear, clothing, and accessories purchased from all over the world. When you walk in you are not just looking at a wall of shoes; you’re looking at a form of merchandised art, an ‘organized mess’ one might say. It’s like a “Where’s Waldo” game, only you end up finding more than just one amazing pair of shoes. Over the past twenty years, the company has become an established footwear institution and continues to grow. Stylists side-note: this store does not sell Crocs; sorry for those of you who are fashionably confused. Please look elsewhere.
The first boutique opened in Edmonton in 1990. In 2000, owner Louise Dirks decided to open a second location in Calgary, and in 2004 a third boutique in Vancouver, British Columbia. Online shopping and pre-shopping worldwide delivery has been offered since 2007. As if we are not already spoiled with the goods from Gravity, tailored pieces are also offered in separate boutiques, in Vancouver and Edmonton. Gravity Pope is located in cities known for their largest shopping malls, cowboy events, or landscape attractions. It has become a popular and successful street-side store acquiring its trend-setting independence all on its own.
Dirks is a lover of shoes and fashion in moderation and she is quickly becoming known as one of Canada’s Queen retail fashion leaders and innovators. As the U of A graduate’s business continues to grow, Dirks is playing her cards right by planning to stay committed to a boutique-store mentality, meaning that customer service and product quality remain priority above all else. Never lacking in care or attention, Dirks makes sure that all her staff are properly trained to adhere to all brand name knowledge and store policy to guarantee customer satisfaction. Gravity Pope’s private ownership is a strong example, and leader, of fashion business entrepreneurship in popular local shopping strips.
Our fashion innovators and leaders flock to Gravity Pope boutiques to purchase from the regional organization known in the fashion world as one of Canada’s leaders in independent fashion retailers. Even celebrities like Ellen DeGeneres are wearing shoes from the shop: her stylist recently had six pairs of shoes on special order for her. For those of you that like quality over quantity – or better yet, quality AND quantity – then Gravity Pope is a provider for you. Clients are varied, from the random shoe-loving online shoppers to the stylish city locals and celebrities. The men and women who shop at Gravity Pope for footwear are the fashion-conscious consumers that don’t mind spending money if it means good fashion. And good quality.
Let’s applaud the work of Ms. Dirks for her fashionable contribution to our community over the past 22 years. People like her prove a point that nothing is handed to you after you finish university. You work hard, you have a goal, you make it happen, and most importantly you do what you love.
Jessica Clark is one of Canada’s up-and-coming stylists and fashion bloggers. You can find more of her writing and photography at Rotating Compass.