Spring Picks from Our VP of Shoes Kristin Frossmo
Kristin Frossmo has been with Nordstrom for 29 years—almost as long as her identical twin sister. She started out selling shoes in the Seattle store and now, as an executive vice president and general merchandise manager, has what many—including her—consider a dream job: she oversees all footwear.
Wearing white Céline booties and a Chloé skirt, Kristin met us in her office overlooking downtown Seattle to discuss her career and advice for young professionals, as well as her passion for shoes that dazzle—and top picks for spring.
Were you always into shoes?
I would say yes, but I don’t think I came to Nordstrom for that. I have an identical twin sister who started six months before me. She got to sell shoes and introduced me to the person who hired me. So, while studying art history in college, I sold shoes part-time. I’ve now been here 29 years! And my sister is still at the company as a VP in HR!
What was your career path like?
Like a lot of people at Nordstrom, I started on the sales floor. For a brief time, I worked at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice—it’s the only time I’ve used my degree! But I returned to Nordstrom, first as a men’s shoe buyer for four years, then as a store manager. I also managed shoe divisions in Utah and the Bay Area. My next job was as a Salon Shoes buyer for the Northern California stores. After a few years, I decided to return to Seattle to work for Nordstrom’s private shoe labels in product development, which was a great experience—getting to travel and visit factories in Italy four times a year! Then I took my first merchandise manager role for kids’ shoes (anything that small is so cute!). From there I moved to women’s shoes and, after that, I took my one job out of shoes as a merchandise manager in the women’s specialized division for five years, focusing on lingerie, hosiery, active and swimwear.
And now you’re the general merchandise manager over all shoes at Nordstrom?
Yes. In the last few years, I realized this was my dream job. When Pete Nordstrom called me a year and a half ago and offered me the position, it was the greatest day of my career. I always tell people that I think I have the best job in the company.
Flats or heels?
I’m pretty much a heels person.
What’s your most recent shoe purchase?
Velvet floral Christian Louboutin booties.
What shoes will you be buying for spring?
I’m a big boot person, and I love the way they’re showing boots into spring—especially the stretch sock bootie. I really love those! I just saw a Valentino one this week that might be a spring purchase for me. It’s black and white and graphic. There’s also so much embellishment and shine this season.
Do you have career advice for others looking to land their ideal jobs?
I’d say, raise your hand and tell people where you want to be. Think further ahead than the next year or two, to that ambition way down the road. And give yourself the chance to gain a lot of different experiences along the way. Also, seek out a mentor who will give you great advice and honest feedback.
Shop Kristin’s sandal picks:
Shop Kristin’s shoe picks: