JULIE Thurston knows all about feet and fashion.
The manager of Port Central’s Manning Shoe Store for the last 10 years is one of Port Central’s originals, having worked in the centre ever since it opened 18 years ago.
Each season Julie joins the Manning buying team of John Mansour, Phil and Chris Saad to help select new styles for the five Manning stores as well as their new online store.
A feature of the local family-owned boutique shoe retailer, which is celebrating 60 years in business, is Manning’s large range of European shoes from brands like Valeria Grossi, Hispanitas, Django and Juliet, Gino Ventori, Reiker and Neo.
Trained staff emphasise correct fitting of shoes for all sizes and shapes of feet and provide support for local podiatrists and health professionals by satisfying specialised needs for people with foot problems.
Julie, who originally trained as a hair stylist, loves head to toe fashion and admits to an impressive personal collection of shoes, especially red shoes.
“The exciting thing about the shoe industry is that it never stands still,” Julie said.
“There is constant innovation, with design, comfort, affordability and the fact that the shoe can be unique.
“I just love helping people and I get great pleasure out of making someone feel important and finding just the right shoes for them. It’s all about customer service.”
With their two daughters forging successful post-university careers, Julie and her husband enjoy planning annual trips overseas, with the itinerary for this year’s trip focused on exploring Laos and Cambodia.
Her travels give Julie inspiration for her creative hobbies which include topiary, abstract painting and jewellery making.