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Is it time to repair your sole?

December 27th, 2010 · No Comments

The Shoe Repair Plus in Aventura prides itself on transforming the worn and weathered into fresh and fashionable. In the midst of Aventura’s luxury retail shopping, where you can buy any designer shoe you can imagine, this shop is busier than ever. Joe Reya, the owner and second generation shoe repairman says, “When people buy good quality, it’s worth fixing. Some shoes can last a lifetime if their owner takes care of them.” Shoe repair is a craft that is not learned in a 60 hour course, rather a skill typically passed from generation to generation.

Here in Aventura, this tradition is alive and thriving. Nick is Joe’s grandson and he works at the shop. He interacts with customers, gives the repair diagnosis, and is learning the craft – each element is a vital part to a successful shoe repair business. Joe is enthusiastic about his repair shop and gave us a quick tour of the shop and shared some facts about the business.

The Shoe Repair shop is a modestly sized storefront – the front of the house is for pick ups and drop offs, while the back of the house is the workshop where the magic happens. Upon entering the workshop piles of repaired shoes wait to be picked up by their owners, like eager pets at a kennel.

The odor of dyes, polish, and chemicals fill the room as if it were a special incense only appropriate when listening to the sounds of chattering sowing machines, polishing reels, and other shattering repair noises in the workshop. These combinations are part of the shop’s battleground and the scars are typically the black dye staining the skin. The behind the scenes of repairing soles is a dirty job, but the Shoe Repair in Aventura has mastered the craft and illusion of giving customers a clean experience – quick repairs and amazing transformations.

When asked about the most common repair, Joe quickly replied “Women’s heels, a 100 pound woman puts 1,800 pounds of pressure on that heel.” While speaking with Joe, several women dropped off and picked up for heel repair, he wasn’t kidding! The customers dropping off shoes explained that they’ve always been very happy with the work at the shop.

This didn’t happen overnight, Joe began learning the business at his father’s shoe factory in Manhattan. He explained that since Italian imports were coming into New York for much less expensive, it was difficult to compete because of the costs involved dealing with the unions in New York City. This caused Joe and his family to shift to the shoe repair business in the early 1970s; they had an edge on the other repair shops because they also knew the production side. When the Reya family moved to Florida they eventually had five repair shops, now Joe’s location in Aventura is the only remaining shop.

Aventura has developed a reputation for luxury and everything new; however, Joe’s shoe repair shop proves that sometimes it’s just as chic to repair a good pair of comfortable and well made shoes.

Joe’s shoe repair is located in the Promenade Shops at 20335 Biscayne Blvd. 305.937.1730

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Tags: Community News · Fashion

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