Charlie Price grows up as the fourth-generation "son" in his family business, "Price and Son", a shoe factory in the English Midlands. Simon also grows up in the Midlands, but the young Black lad's strict father is puzzled by the boy's high spirits. Charlie's father is ageing and hopes that Charlie will take over the factory, but Charlie insists on moving to London with his status-conscious fiancée, Nicola. Charlie's father dies suddenly, and he hurries home for the funeral to find that factory is near bankruptcy, amidst hard economic times. The factory makes good quality men's shoes, but they are not stylish, and the market for them is drying up. Good-hearted Charlie cannot imagine how to save the business. He wants to shut the factory down, but he also wants to save the workers' jobs. The workers don't understand why Charlie had moved away in the first place, and some of them see Charlie as spoiled.
In London, Charlie is inadvertently involved in a street altercation, which leads him to meet a drag performer, Lola, and her backup troupe of drag queens, the "angels". Charlie notices that the performers' high-heeled shoes and boots are not well-designed to hold a man's weight, but Lola explains that the expensive and unreliable footwear is an essential part of the act. In fact, Lola says, there are more drag queens out there than one would suspect, and all of them yearn for sturdier high-heeled footwear. Lauren, who works in the factory, has a crush on Charlie. She suggests that other struggling shoe factories have survived by entering an "underserved niche market". This gives Charlie an idea, and he invites Lola to come to the factory to show him exactly what kind of boots she craves. Lola and the angels arrive to help Charlie and his workers update their style sense. Charlie begs Lola to stay for three weeks, until the prestigious Milan footwear show, to design a new line of "kinky boots" that could save the factory. Lola reluctantly agrees. Nicola is angry and bewildered that Charlie will not sell the factory and return to London to marry her and live the good life.
Many of the factory workers are not enthusiastic about the radical change in their product line. Some of them give Lola, whose birth name is Simon, a hard time, making him/her feel very unwelcome, especially the imposing Don. Lola challenges Don in front of all the workers with a unique wager to see who is the better "man": Lola will do any one thing that Don writes down, while Don must do one thing that Lola writes. Don's challenge is for Lola to fight him in a boxing match at the pub. Lola challenges Don to "accept one person for themselves". It turns out that Simon/Lola has had extensive boxing lessons from his father and even a short boxing career. He easily scores against Don in the ring but ultimately lets Don win the match. Afterwards, in private, Don asks why he did so, and Lola replies that he could not be so cruel as to humiliate Don in front of his mates.
Some of the factory workers have been dragging their heels, so to speak, on executing the new designs, and Charlie is getting frantic that he will not be ready for the Milan show. Lola has been making some decisions about production and preparation for the show without consulting Charlie, and Charlie blows his top, insulting Lola and the factory workers. Lola storms off, saying "we're done!", and the factory workers go home. To make matters worse, Nicola finally leaves Charlie. Charlie is despondent; it looks like he will have to sell the factory after all. Lauren finds Charlie and tells him to come back to the factory. It seems that Don has persuaded all the factory workers to return to work and to up their game. Charlie is astonished and grateful. He asks if Don has fulfilled Lola's wager by accepting Lola. Lauren explains that, no, the person that Don has accepted ... is Charlie!
It is a sprint to get ready for Milan. Charlie feels terrible about the things he said to Lola at the factory. It turns out that many of the decisions that Lola had made were just right, and Charlie knows that he was a fool for not listening to her. He knows that it will be more difficult to sell the boots to the buyers in Milan without Lola and the angels. Meanwhile, Lola finds her father, who had never accepted her, dying in a nursing home, and reaches some sense of closure. Charlie and Lauren leave for Milan. Just as the footwear show starts, Lola arrives to save the day, and the whole company celebrates the success of the "kinky boots". Lauren and Charlie share their first kiss.
Check back soon when libretto and/or lyrics for Kinky Boots becomes available.