Donald J. Pliner
Donald J. Pliner was born in 1943 and grew up in Chicago, Illinois, with his twin sister
Donna. Often said to be born with a "silver shoehorn" in his mouth, Donald and his brother, Elliot, worked as
apprentices to their father, Leo, at the family owned Pliner's Florsheim Family Shoe Shops. In 1967 Donald
consequently opened Pappagallo Beverly Hills - his own retail store. It was very successful as first-year
sales hit almost $1 million.
Later on in 1971, Donald J. Pliner rose to major designer prominence with the Right Bank Clothing Co. Located on
Camden Drive in Beverly Hills, this store quickly became the source for many fashion shoppers. Three years later,
the shop became the Right Bank Shoe Co., which served as the first American outlet for European designers such as
Thierry Mugler, Basile, Castelbajac, Maud Frizon, Stephane Kelian, Arche, Bisonte and Trussardi. During the same
year, Donald opened a second shop, The Right Bank Clothing Co. and Tea Room, on Rodeo Drive. Donald continued to
innovate, by developing a line of RBCC clothing, shoes and accessories. This line generated so much attention, that
it warranted a wholesale division. This was picked up and represented in specialty and department stores across the
country. Meanwhile, the Right Bank Clothing Co. and Tea Room became the place of a choice of many celebrity
In 1984, Intershoe recruited Donald J. Pliner to head a new line of Spanish-produced footwear called Glacè. He not
only designed the entire collection, but he also directed and conceived the whole operation, including all of the
sales. The end result was found in the incredibly successful Glacee collection. Within two years, the line was sold
Three years later, Donald J. Pliner moved on into producing fashion-forward shoes for shoe designer Erica. His
design direction dramatically increased sales and new business. Following this, in 1989 Donald once again created
his own line of footwear and accessories with current company Donald J Pliner.
In 1994 Donald J. Pliner designed his first all-over elastic shoe, using comfort as his underlying and essential
goal. Although his current collections include such novelty materials and vibrant colors, almost every style has
some elastic in it, whether hidden or used as the primary fabric for a shoe.
In 1998 the Men’s footwear is introduced by Donald J Pliner for the first time. What started as basic shoes made
mostly of elastic has evolved into fashion for the male feet. Today, the men’s line comprises dress shoes, boots,
basic comfort shoes, sandals, sporty styles, and executive dress shoes, which use the air-touch system patented in
Italy for added comfort.
One year later, Aventura Mall in South Florida established itself as the location for the first Donald J Pliner
concept shoe shop. The decor of the store remains similar to the New York showroom as well as Donald J. Pliner’s
home in Miami, and is considered as the basis for all of the Donald J. Pliner boutiques. The artifacts and unique
collections from his travels around the world adorn the floor and walls and have continually been used as the
inspiration for Donald’s shoes and accessories. Known for his high fashion comfort footwear, Donald J. Pliner wants
his customers to be comfortable not only whilst wearing his trademarked shoes, but also when shopping for them.
Today, Donald continues to develop a very innovative line of luxury comfort footwear, by mixing together his
creative energy with ongoing entrepreneurial spirit. The company has recently expanded in order to include footwear
for men and women, leatherwear for men and women, handbags, and belts. Donald has also launched Friends of BabyDoll
Pliner, a collection featuring outerwear, collars, leashes, harnesses, day carriers, and FAA approved airline
carriers for dogs of up to 20 pounds weight. There are six Donald J Pliner concept stores in Aventura, Beverly
Hills, Coral Gables, Houston, Las Vegas, and San Jose.
Find shoes by Donald J. Pliner @ the following eshop: