With the cold weather months almost upon us, many in the state will be wanting to purchase warm, comfortable, sturdy shoes or boots that can withstand the increasingly harsh Northeast weather. Others may be thinking about new shoes to show off at holiday parties. Whatever you’re looking for, consider these Connecticut stores, all of which distinguish themselves by their selection, expertise and professionalism.

The Shoe Mart
3 Berkeley St.
Norwalk, CT 06850
(203) 853-6543
www.theshoemart.com

Norwalk’s Shoe Mart has earned rave reviews from local patrons not just for its extensive inventory of footwear, but for its outstanding customer service. If you know what you’re after, the staff can easily locate it for you, and if it’s not in store, someone will quickly order it for you and have it shipped to your door for free. Those with larger or smaller feet should know that the Shoe Mart stocks plenty of extra wide and narrow sizes. And it is one of the biggest retailers of Alden brand shoes for men in the state.

Ente’s Shoe Salon
2391 Black Rock Turnpike
Fairfield, CT 06825
(203) 371-0782
www.enteshoesalon.com

Originally founded in Bridgeport, Ente’s Shoe Salon is one of the finest retailers of women’s shoes in Fairfield County. It carries flats, wedges and high heels of varying lengths from designers including Paul Mayer, Claudia Ciuti and Stuart Weitzman. It can boast of being the only store in the area where women can easily find narrow-width shoes. And you can complement those shoes with one of the many Franchi, Santi and Beirn handbags Ente’s sells.

Connecticut Boot & Shoe
91 E. Main St.
Thomaston, CT 06787
(860) 283-2385
www.ctboot.com

Owner Fred Jury, who started CT Boot and Shoe in 1995, isn’t content to just let customers fend for themselves when trying to find the right pair of shoes. Perhaps no other shoe store in the state goes more out of its way to make sure shoppers get the most durable and comfortable footwear possible. He and his expert fitment specialists don’t just ask for your foot size, but measure its length and width as well as your arch length in order to secure the perfect shoes or boots. They will also, if necessary, modify your purchase with heel pads and wraps, tongue pads and stretching and throw in free leather maintenance.

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Arciuolo’s Shoes
74 Broad St.
Milford, CT 06460
(203) 877-7463
www.arciuolos.com

The family-owned Arciuolo’s has been in Milford for nearly a century, making it Connecticut’s oldest independent shoe store. Owner Matt Arciuolo is also a pedorthist which means he and his son, fitting specialist Matt Arciuolo II, will be able to help each customer walk away with a perfectly fitting shoe. Some of the brands you’ll find include Clarks, Dansko, Wolverine and San Antonio Comfort Shoes, and the store frequently holds special sales and promotions so you’re sure to find some excellent deals.

Clinton Bootery
203 E. Main St.
Clinton, CT 06413
(860) 669-2747
www.clintonbootery.com

Clinton Bootery, the top destination for women’s shoes on the Connecticut shoreline, recently moved into a larger store on Route 1 to expand its already impressive selection. Like Arciuolo’s, its owner is a certified pedorthist who cares about his customers’ comfort. Clinton Bootery also has an Aetrex istep machine that can digitally scan your feet and better help you find the right fit. And if your priority is making sure your feet stay cozy, Clinton Bootery stocks one of the state’s largest selections of Uggs.

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Joshua Palmes is a freelance writer covering all things Connecticut. His work can be found on Examiner.com.