The South Salem Star
Shoe designer Bettye Muller has tried her hand at many different careers: acting, giving ice-skating lessons, graphic design, and modeling. Even though she's always loved shoes—she once owned some 500 pairs of vintage designs and loved scouring shoe stores like Alexander’s and Costume Bootery while growing up in White Plains—it wasn’t until the South Salem resident found herself modeling them that she realized what she really wanted to do: design shoes.
“Little by little it grew and became this full-blown thing,” says the White Plains High School alum. Through modeling, she met shoe designer John Higdon, for whom she began working part-time. Soon Muller was designing for labels such as Marc Jacobs for Perry Ellis, Henri Bendel, and Consolidated Shoe Co. in London. Then, after a few failed solo attemps, The Bettye Muller Shoe Company was successfully launched in 1997, with financial support from the Consolidated Shoe Co.
Today Muller's shoes cost $325 and up, and are sold at high-end retailers including Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, Plaza Too, and The Perfect Pair in Irvington. “You can wear my shoes with jeans or you can dress them up,” she says. “That’s my whole concept. I don’t do heavy duty evening shoes or very high heels.” Want to see more? Check out the collection at bettyemuller.com. // MI
LESTER’S, 1037 Boston Post Rd, Rye (914) 908-5688, lestersnyc.com Lester’s fans—and there are legions of ‘em—tired of crossing a bridge to get to its Long Island or New York City stores are in luck. This 60-year-old, family owned retailer, specializing in upscale-label clothing, shoes, and accessories for stylistas-in-training, opened its first 914 location—all 10,000+ square feet of it—in August. Outfitting your own picky (sorry, discerning) offspring? Head here to score the most sizzling fall must-haves, including ankle-zippered and pleather leggings, skinny jeans, chunky sweaters, washed-out sweatshirts sporting peace signs, and slouchy suede boots. Lester’s extensive selection (3,000+ brands) covers babies/children, ‘tweens/teens, boys/young men, juniors/women, and offers footwear, plus school and camp uniforms and clothing. Prices—and merchandise—run the gamut, from funky headbands ($3) to hip-once-more leather motorcycle jackets ($200).
MONTBLANC, 125 Westchester Ave, White Plains (914) 946-1254, montblanc.com This longtime internationally renowned maker of exquisitely crafted pens and pencils recently launched a new 2,500+-square-foot boutique at The Westchester. Though in recent years it has expanded beyond its original offerings by branching out into luxury leather goods and belts, jewelry, and timepieces, it continues to showcase its signature writing instruments.
THE ART OF SHAVING, 125 Westchester Avenue, White Plains (914) 993-6494, theartofshaving.com Metrosexuals—or those guys who just want a close, comfortable, and irritation-free shave—have new cause to celebrate. As its name suggests, The Art of Shaving specializes in helping men achieve that often-elusive perfect shave. To deliver, it offers not only a full complement of high-quality skincare products and razors, but also a staff of shaving specialists who will provide personalized instruction in recommended skin prep, lathering, shaving, and moisturizing techniques. Many of the shop’s products—like its signature all-natural, pre-shave oil ($22)—were first developed by founders Myriam Zaoui and Eric Malka in their own kitchen sinks. // LY