The Story Behind Piper's 2.0, Coming Soon

The Story Behind Piper's 2.0, Coming Soon
Photo: Camden Avery/Hoodline
By Camden Avery - Published on April 06, 2014.
After a remarkably quick open-and-closed-and-open-again turnaround, Piper's Shoe Parlor is almost ready for its shiny new life.

Kipling Rowe, the new proprietress, finalized the purchase of the business from former owner Jessica Dega on April 1, and she's aiming to get shoes back on the shelves and ready for sale within the next two weeks.

We took a walk with Rowe and her eight-year-old English bulldog, Capone, to hear about the plan.

Rowe was born and raised in San Francisco and now, after stints in fashion (New York) and film (Los Angeles), she lives in Berkeley with her family. She said she grew up coming to the Haight to visit places like the I-Beam and Murio's, and is excited to be back in the neighborhood and involved with the community.

Rowe is a first time small business owner, and she's re-opening Piper's Shoe Parlor with a modest remodel (already underway) and an interest, she said, in keeping the core of what former owner Jessica Dega built up in the store's first three years. She loved the store's presence in the neighborhood when she was a customer, she said, and is looking forward to keeping and expanding on what it's on offer.

The brands Rowe is planning to maintain at the shop include Zig Zag, Chrome, Miista, Red Wing, Seychelles, Wolverine, Brixton and Filson: quality, primarily American brands with a range of sartorial offerings. She said she might eventually branch into children's clothing, too.

Between now and the re-opening, Rowe said, she's just focusing on getting as many shoes on the shelf as possible to make sure the shop is fully stocked for the summer.

And, she said, Capone the bulldog will be behind the counter every day.