Wiona Store & Co, located at the Craft Market (Unit 13 in Broadhurst Industrial) is breathing life into Botswana’s versatile fashion scene. Walking into the store, shoe lovers are transported into their own little paradise.
There is everything for everyone, and even window shoppers can pass by and daydream a bit. The store specialises in ladies leather goods (shoes and bags) of premium quality that are sourced from one of the fashion capitals of the world, Brazil. The store opened its doors in 2013 shortly after the owners realised that there was a shortage of stores that offered quality shoes and bags, particularly the type that would appeal to an upwardly mobile, cosmopolitan and image conscious Motswana woman.
According to one of the owners, Iona Omphile, they have since made it their mandate to bridge that gap offering only the best quality leather goods, giving their clients a memorable experience while interacting with the ‘Wiona’ brand. “Made with genuine Brazilian top grain cowhide leather, this is the uppermost part of the hide that has been buffed and polished to remove imperfections such as scarring and pot marks,” she notes.
She explains that their leather is coloured and treated with a layer of polymer to achieve a uniform finish, with a gorgeous grain free of imperfections and improved resistance against stains. This, she says, is what sets apart their offerings. She also says that when it comes to picking their various collections they look at factors such as comfort, elegance and current styles as influenced by various international fashion houses. Omphile further says that they also have in-store the basic wardrobe staples for everyday work wear as well as fashion forward styles for the fashionistas. “We also limit the pairs we bring in, in order to preserve the exclusivity of what we have in store,” she notes.
Wiona launched a new collection aimed at professional women, this past week. With this collection, they selected styles that are more suited for the workplace. And as always, comfort played a key role when it came to nit picking the collection. Clients are spoilt for choice and can find thick sole heels, pumps in black, navy and shades of nude in kitten heels, as well as medium and high heels. They also have lots of colours to choose from such as oranges, pinks, blues and metallic. “These give a perfect pop to any outfit and do well for special occasions,” Omphile notes. They also have the en-vogue brogues and oxfords that are fast becoming a wardrobe staple to any woman’s wardrobe, as they can be worn for both formal occasions or as laid back weekend wear.
Omphile points out that while the latest trends are top priority, comfort is always key. She notes that thick heels are not going anywhere, and that the thick heel and metallic shades that include silver, gold and rose gold are trending at the moment. If you have ever popped into the store, you will know that some prices might be considered unfriendly for some pockets. The shoe prices range from P1, 300.00 -P1, 800.00 and boots up to P3, 200.00 and bags from P1, 800.00 - P3, 000.00. Omphile elaborates that when it comes to those who wish to update their looks with shoes, they should look at factors such as picking a shoe that is shaped like your foot.
She also highlights that most of us have one foot that is larger than the other, so they need to fit the shoe to the larger foot. “Lastly, the size of your feet changes as you grow older so always have your feet measured before buying shoes. The best time to measure your feet is at the end of the day when your feet are largest,” she explains.
Omphile also says that individuals should also look at their lifestyles, the sort of work that they do and how they spend their leisure time. But most importantly, is that they should have the right shoes, such as a perfect flat for day and night that can be paired with a dress or skinny jeans and a shirt, a pair of basic formal (closed) work shoes for everyday wear, a comfortable heel for the special evening occasions, a pair of brogues, a pair of open sandals and a good pair of boots should give any lady a good start for a shoe capsule.