You have to wear shoes in Payless


My in-laws have been visiting this weekend. They brought Monkey a new Sunday suit, but he has grown out of his dress shoes, so we decided to buy him some new ones. (Disclaimer: I am not in favor if my child wearing shoes, but he freaking LOVES shoes. I don’t know where this comes from. I blame my shoe-addicted mother in law.)

We had to go in to town anyway to do our taxes, so my mother in law came with us an we left a little early so she could get some shopping done. We walked in to Payless to get some cute little boy dress shoes for Monkey to wear to church with his adorable new suit. We couldn’t find the ones we liked in his size, so we asked an associate for help. After she got the correct size for us, she looked down at my feet and asked, “Where are your shoes?”

“I don’t wear shoes,” I replied.

“Well you have to wear shoes in here,” the associate said.

“Do you mind if I ask why?” I asked.

“Well, you’ve heard ‘No shoes, no shirt, no service,’ right?” she responded. “I’m sure it’s the same everywhere.”

“There are no by-laws about having to wear shoes,” Peter chimed in.

“Does your store have a policy about wearing shoes?” I asked.

“I’m not sure, why don’t you ask?” the associate replied.

“I just did,” I responded, indignantly.

The associate said nothing as we walked to the front of the store to pay for Monkey’s new shoes. Awkward moment #2 shortly took place – Payless still has my phone number on file from the last time I bought shoes for work from them 5 years ago. They asked if I wanted to add my email address so they could send me coupons.

Oh heck no!

Major props to my husband for standing up to people who have no idea what they are talking about when they tell me I have to put shoes on due to regulations that don’t exist. Moral of the story: Know your rights and stand up for them! To learn more, visit my side project Barefoot is Legal.

23 Responses to “You have to wear shoes in Payless”

  1. March 16, 2015 at 8:54 pm #

    How stupid that is. The first thing you do in a shoe store is getting out of your shoes to try new shoes.

  2. March 17, 2015 at 6:16 am #

    Little by little the educational work goes on. Thank you for your efforts to educate the public about barefooting.

  3. hexin
    March 22, 2015 at 12:30 am #

    We went in to two Payless stores this week, and I spent half my time in there barefoot, since you have to try things on and there’s no point in putting your own back on between every shoe you find that might work. No one gave me any grief about it either, much to my surprise.

    • sierra
      March 22, 2015 at 12:55 am #

      I remember as a kid, it was always a very tedious thing to go shoe shopping. It never occurred to me to not put shoes back on in between trying on pairs.

  4. Pedro
    March 24, 2015 at 5:22 am #

    Hello,Would you like to try karate?I think a girl who is barefoot with the gym suit of judo or karate is fascinating!Yes?

    • sierra
      March 26, 2015 at 6:20 pm #

      I actually have done martial arts before. It was something I was enjoying, but I stopped when I got pregnant with my son and I haven’t gotten back in to it. My husband teaches a Filipino martial art known as Kali. It is traditionally practiced barefoot, but they don’t have a uniform. You can see pictures on his Facebook page, Filipino Martial Arts Canada.

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  14. October 4, 2015 at 11:21 pm #

    I think the sales person at the store you were, had something against bare feet. I walked into Payless store in my town, I was barefoot, with shorts and t-shirt, and no one said a word to me. Your answers to the sales lady were great, I try also to educate people regarding the bare feet and entering a store, it is sometime frustrating.

    Keep up the good work.

  15. John
    August 6, 2016 at 5:55 pm #

    I was asked to leave a Winn Dixie store since I was barefoot. Ironically enough, this was in the town of Barefoot Bay Florida =)
    In most of the small convenience stores in the state you can be barefoot with no objections.

  16. Erik
    February 5, 2017 at 2:29 pm #

    You’re so clever that you put a picture of the store in your blog…

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