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With summer here, women foot oft-hefty bills for flip flops

By EMILY GUERRA
June 14, 2010 at 1:14 a.m.

Yellow Box flip-flop's draw a high interest among women in Victoria.

FLIP FLOP FESTIVAL

On Sept. 4, Port Lavaca will hold its 2nd Annual Flip Flop Festival. Gates open at noon. Admission is free. Events include:

Chili cook-off

Horseshoe and washer tournament

Performances by Victoria Cloggers and The Dance Co. Girls

Frozen T-shirt and fling flong contest

KIDS Zone games and crafts by the YMCA

Reels in Heels fishing tournament

Beer garden

Vendor booths

Food and drinks

Brenna Smith beamed as she stood surrounded by stripes, polka dots, animal print and diamonds.

The 36-year-old Mission Valley resident loves her distinct collection of Yellow Box flip-flops. Smith laughed at herself, though, when she noticed she even owns duplicates.

Smith is one of many Victoria women who love flip-flops for their comfort, versatility and style. Many women just can't seem to get enough of the special shoes - especially with summer here.

"I wear them to work and to the pool," Smith said. "I even have a camo pair for when I go hunting."

Smith owns about 50 pairs of flip-flops - all of which are the Yellow Box variety. Because they are stylish, she can wear them with just about any outfit, from casual to formal, she said.

"The only time I wear tennis shoes is when it's cold, which is not very often," she said.

Victoria retail store owners largely agree Yellow Box flip-flops are the city's most popular, but other locally available brands maintain a solid foothold, too.

Corky's look similar to Yellow Box, except for the logo on the sole. Corky's also offer sparkle and style, and owners tout their comfort.

Rhinestone Ruby gives consumers the ability to personalize the flip-flop.

"Rhinestone Ruby shoes come with interchangeable diamond letters and shapes that you put on the straps," Melissa Foeh, owner of Madi Tays, said.

Switch Flops, a new brand of flip-flops that takes customization to a new level, allow users to change the top of the shoe. The straps are made of Velcro, allowing users to peel off designs and attach new ones.

The flip-flop offers a variety of straps with different styles and patterns.

While flip-flop prices vary considerably, most stylish options start at $15 and go up from there.

Yellow Box, the city's most popular brand, according to retailers, can be found in Victoria at Madi Tays, The Palm Tree Boutique, About the Gift, Foster Creek Station and The Shoe Depot.

Corky's and Rhinestone Ruby can be found at Madi Tays; Switch Flops can be found at About the Gift.

Jason Leavitt, a sales representative from The Shoe Dept., said many women will even sacrifice comfort just to own a particular brand.

"Women come in here asking for a size seven and a half Yellow Box shoe, and if we do not have it, they are willing to take a size six," Leavitt said.

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