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A Day in the Life: Store Manager and Retail Training Lead, Sunny

4-minute read

Meet Sunny, Poppy Barley’s Retail Training Lead and Calgary-based Store Manager! Discover how she pivoted from working full time in the fitness industry to training Poppy Barley’s retail teams, sharing her passion for authentic customer connections and perfectly-fitting shoes!


How did you get your start at Poppy Barley?

Before Poppy Barley, I worked full time in the fitness industry as a studio director. So, I was in charge of training spin, HIIT, and row instructors at a fitness studio in Calgary. My first love is fitness, but I was looking for a change!

Poppy Barley was suggested to me by a friend who worked in the Market Mall store when it first opened. She was very excited about the brand and thought I would be a good fit.

Admittedly, I was not a shoe person whatsoever. Shoe shopping was the greatest cause of anxiety for me. I could never find anything. But, then I tried on my first pair of Poppy Barleys.

Now, I’m the Store Manager at Poppy Barley’s Market Mall location in Calgary, Alberta, and the Retail Training Lead. And, a total shoe-lover.


What does a typical week look like as a store manager?

The majority of my time is spent on the sales floor—chatting with customers and attending to what they need. I spend a lot of time helping people find their perfect fit.

When I got started with Poppy Barley, I didn’t anticipate being so invested in learning about people’s different issues and concerns with their feet, and learning which shoes work best for them.

I also share fit feedback with Poppy Barley’s product team, letting them know what’s working and what’s not.

I oversee receiving products at the Market Mall store. So, we receive products from our factories or warehouses, verify we received what we were supposed to receive, check for imperfections, and then box them and put them away in the backroom.

I also train, manage, and handle scheduling for my team!


What’s the best part about leading your team?

What I love most is when they come to tell me about a special customer interaction they had. They’ll come to me with tears (of joy) streaming down their face and a story about whoever they were helping.

Meeting sales goals is great and all, but I really love seeing my team making special customer connections.


You’re known at Poppy Barley for creating an amazing culture for your team! How do you do it and why is it so important to you?

I never want work to feel like a chore. Work is work, and we always get it done, but it is important to me that it doesn’t feel heavy or stressful.

I want the store to feel like a second home for my team. It should be a space where people want to come. I look for every opportunity to make it a fun, safe, and welcoming place. Even in the little things, like having lots of snacks and playing upbeat music.


What does your role as Retail Training Lead entail?

I put together an “authentic customer service” program that walks through making genuine connections with customers, rather than putting sales first.

This role allows me to work with Poppy Barley’s other retail teams, training them on the program, getting them feeling confident about it, and making sure our retail experiences are cohesive across stores.

I have a huge passion for training people and helping them see their potential, which this allows me to do.


Where did you gain your customer service expertise?

The fitness industry! It taught me so much about customer interaction. When you’re teaching fitness, your main goal is the client. You spend so much time getting to know people and understanding what they need from you. You learn how to talk to people and make them feel comfortable, welcome and safe.


What is the most rewarding thing about working at Poppy Barley?

Poppy Barley encourages their retail teams to make connections with their customers, which is pretty unique in the retail space. It’s not just about which shoe and bag we can get them to buy. It’s about remembering customers’ names, getting to know them, and forming relationships that go far beyond the (amazing) products they have stopped by to purchase.

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The Harley Heeled Sandal Ankle Size Guide

How To Measure:
The Harley Heeled Sandal: Take a tape measure and wrap it around your foot, right below your ankle bone as that is where the strap will sit (see product imagery and fit video for a visual demonstration). This measurement is based on the last adjustment point on the strap.

Size Strap length will accommodate an ankle measurement up to the size below
5 26 cm
5.5 26.5 cm
6 27 cm
6.5 27 cm
7 27.5 cm
7.5 27.5 cm
8 28 cm
8.5 28 cm
9 28 cm
9.5 28.5 cm
10 28.5 cm
10.5 29 cm
11 29 cm
11.5 30 cm
12 30 cm

The Esther Heeled Sandal Ankle Size Guide

How to Measure:
The Esther Heeled Sandal: take a tape measure and wrap it around your ankle, above the ankle bone, as that is where the strap will sit (see product imagery and fit video for a visual demonstration). This measurement is based on the last adjustment point on the strap.

Size Strap length will accommodate an ankle measurement up to the size below
5 23 cm
5.5 23 cm
6 23 cm
6.5 23 cm
7 24 cm
7.5 24 cm
8 24.5 cm
8.5 24.5 cm
9 24.5 cm
9.5 25 cm
10 25 cm
10.5 25.5 cm
11 26 cm
11.5 26 cm
12 26 cm

Belt Sizes

Natural Waist Measurement Typical Jean Size Belt Size for High‑rise Pant Belt Size for Mid‑rise Pant Infinite Belt Size
23-25" 23/24 26" 28" 1
25-26" 25 28" 30" 1
26-27" 26 30" 32" 1
27-28" 27 30" 32" 1
28-29" 28 32" 34" 2
29-30" 29 32" 34" 2
30-31" 30 34" 36" 2
31-32" 31 34" 36" 2
32-33" 32 36" 38" 3
33-34" 33 36" 38" 3
34-35" 34 38” 40" 3
36-37" 36 38" 40" 3
38-39" 38 40" 42" 4
40-41" 40 40" 42" 4
42-43" 42 44" 46" 4
43-44" 43 44" 46" 5
44-45" 44 46" - 5

Sizing Note: For the most accurate fit, measure around your body where you plan to wear the belt. Choose the closest belt size to that measurement.

Belt Diagram Accent Belt and Complement BeltThe Accent Belt, The Polished Belt and The Complement Belt size measurements start from the beginning of the leather to the middle hole.

Belt Diagram Infinite BeltThe Infinite Belt size measurements cover the entire length of the leather.

Belt Measuring Guide

Belt Measuring Guide

A - High-rise style:

If you plan to wear your belt around your natural waistline, wrap a measuring tape around the narrowest part of your midsection. Then, add 3” to determine your high-rise belt size.

B - Mid-rise style:

If you plan to wear your belt lower than your natural waistline, you will require a dierent size. If you have a particular pair of bottoms you intend to wear your belt with, wrap a measuring tape through the belt loops while in a relaxed position.

When wearing your belt in your preferred style, it should fasten in the middle hole. The belt will relax with wear allowing you to cinch it tighter, as needed.

If you plan to wear the belt in both the high and mid-rise styles, you have two options:

  1. Select your high-rise style and fasten it more loosely when worn in the mid-rise style.
  2. Select your mid-rise style and fasten it more tightly when worn in the high-rise style.