Life Coach Magazine

Stepping into Success: Neely Woodson Powell’s Journey with Charleston Shoe Company

By Djridings @fivethingsnow

From Mexican Cobblestones to Global Storefronts: The Inspiring Tale of Neely Woodson Powell and the Charleston Shoe Company

  1. Entrepreneurial Background: Neely comes from an entrepreneurial family. Her mother, Lucy Woodson, founded Worlds Away, a company specializing in designer wholesale furnishings. This environment provided Neely with a strong foundation in business and creativity.
  2. The Mexican Connection: In 1996, during a trip to San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, Neely met a cobbler named Santiago, who crafted stylish and comfortable shoes. This meeting inspired her to start selling these hand-sewn shoes, initially alongside her mother’s furniture markets. The combination of style, comfort, and versatility appealed to many, laying the groundwork for her future company.
  3. Educational Pursuit and Expansion: After graduating from college, Neely furthered her knowledge in shoe design by enrolling in the Savannah College of Art & Design. She opened her first Charleston Shoe Company store in Savannah, Georgia, in 2010. This marked the beginning of an expansion that would lead to stores in Charleston and other locations across the United State.
  4. Cobblestones to Cocktails: Charleston Shoe Company’s tagline, “Cobblestones to Cocktails,” reflects the brand’s focus on creating shoes that are both fashionable and comfortable, suitable for diverse occasions. The shoes are known for their versatility, with features like treaded soles, elastic straps, and being machine washable, appealing to a broad range of customers.
  5. Community Involvement and Expansion: Neely’s involvement in the community and her charismatic personality have been key factors in the brand’s growth. The Charleston Shoe Company has expanded to include over 25 retail stores and is sold in more than 700 boutiques. The brand continues to collaborate with the same family of cobblers in Mexico, staying true to its roots while expanding its reach nationally.

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