MOVERS & SHAKERS: FOOT PETALS' TINA ALDATZ

THE RISE OF TINA ALDATZ’ FOOTWEAR EMPIRE, ONE COMFORTABLE STEP AT A TIME.

Tina Aldatz has been helping woman avoid shoe-icide since first launching the original designer shoe cushion, Foot Petals in 2001. Now fashion lovers and aspiring entrepreneurs can follow her journey in her new book, From Stilettos to the Stock Exchange (Apparel Industry Publishing).

FROM STILETTOS TO THE STOCK EXCHANGE BY TINA ALDATZ

How did you get involved with the footwear industry? I first got involved in the footwear industry when I created Foot Petals, a custom line of designer cushioned insoles for women’s high heels, and we launched our product in 2001.

What do you love about it? I never really felt like part of a community until I was embraced with open arms by the footwear community. Their support, and the support of organizations like the The Two Ten Foundation, have really changed my life for the better. I also love all the shoes, shoes and more shoes!

What have been some of the challenges? All the shoes! No really, one of the challenges I experienced throughout my career in the footwear industry is that it is primarily run by men, but I see that changing.

What advice would you give someone wanting to break into the footwear industry? Create relationships and don’t burn bridges! The footwear industry is a very tight knit community.

What’s one thing you know now that you wish you had known when you started out? Think like a retailer and begin the process with the end in mind. For example, find the right market for your product that makes sense for retailers. It is crucial and not as easy as I thought it would be. When I first started Foot Petals, some people saw it as a beauty product while the more successful buyers saw it in the shoe department. TinaAldatz.com