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Best shoe store inside Chittenden County (retired) 

Stella

IN STEP

At Stella, shoes are arranged not by brand but by color, which makes it all the easier to forget their function and bask in their beauty. Slinky flats from All Black and clunky platforms from Chie Mihara aren’t just footwear: They’re aesthetic statements. But the store really wins readers’ loyalty because it offers so many choices to shoe lovers who don’t want to spend their lives tottering like Carrie Bradshaw. Vermont demands shoes that survive mud season, and Stella obliges with Frye and Timberland boots, while sandals and pumps from Clarks and Kenneth Cole’s Gentle Souls line prove comfort can look good. Earlier this year, Stella moved up from its underground digs to the street-level space vacated by Scribbles, and now there’s plenty of room for stylin’ clothes, jewelry and handbags, too. It’s not unusual to see groups of smartly dressed women camped out for an hour on the store’s comfy couches, searching for the perfect pair.

-Margot Harrison

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