Passion keeps me in step with high heels
What is the most interesting aspect of your job?
Working with beautiful shoes and people who share your passion.
Do you have a personal passion for shoes?
I didn't choose footwear, it chose me. I really am passionate about everything related to shoes.
How many pairs do you own?
I've always had an obscene amount of shoes in my cupboard. Definitely over 50 pairs; including boots, maybe 70 odd? My purchases have actually slowed over the years - probably due to my tastes becoming more and more expensive!
Do you ever have to travel for your job?
I travel about seven times a year - a couple of times around Europe, but my travel is mostly to China.
What has your most interesting experience abroad been?
It would definitely be a minor car accident in the city centre of Guangzhou, China.
What is the worst part of your job?
The hours can be tough and working over weekends.
What are the perks?
Sometimes we get shoes at cost. But I would say being able to shop for accessories in foreign countries is a major plus.
What type of personality is needed to be a buyer?
You need to have a tough skin and have the ability to negotiate. You should be comfortable with public speaking and be able to present your range with confidence. You would need to be self-reliant and able to hold your own for sometimes weeks by yourself in a foreign country. But the key ingredient is a passion for what you're working with.
Who is your favourite shoe designer?
Jimmy Choo and Christian Louboutin for heels, Mui Mui for flats.
What has been your worst experience as a buyer?
Having a range fall apart because of last-minute problems with factories in China. It's soul-destroying to see all your hard work go to pieces and to be out of your control.
What do you do withthe shoes that don't get sold?
We mark them down and sell them as specials to bulk buyers or our own stores. - Keitumetse Segoai