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What shoes to choose
Shoes are one of those important choices to make for your wedding day, they help tie together the whole look and help us make that all important one foot in front of the other walk down the aisle. With a little consideration and careful planning you can avoid a poor choice that could put a damper on your special day. I want to share with you my thoughts and research on this to help you make a great choice to have your day your way.
When to buy
My first thought to bridal footwear occurred at the dress shop when the fitter said you must bring your bridal shoes to the next fitting to check the dress length. My thought was that I had better start thinking what to choose.
If your dress is long it is worth having your shoes with you at fittings to ensure the length is tailored to ensure it compliments.
Good bridal shoes to me where not shoes they were boots. My first thought was an image of the bride wearing fabulously high heeled shoes in elegant satin with lace detail, designer shoes would have been my first choice, perhaps a pair of Jimmy Choo shoes…..
What makes your shoes (or boots) ideal is individual for each bride. I surveyed a group of brides and found that the top three considerations were comfort, style and heel height.
Top Shoe Criteria for Brides:
- Heel height;
- Option to re-use
Real brides top reasons for their bridal shoe choice
Comfort – Things to consider:
Do sling backs make your heels slide about?
Do Mary Jane’s rub your feet?
Do you need footwear to suit an outdoor wedding or even an ice palace ?
With comfort in mind my ideal shoe was a poor fit to reality. You see firstly I have narrow feet and a tendency to walk out of shoes with no strap, secondly I rarely wear shoes with a large heel. Images of nights out and events where poor choices in footwear come to mind. At a friend’s wedding where I wore medium heeled Hush Puppies court shoes and I keep losing a shoe while walking, all very Cinderella however it was far from ideal, I think I probably looked like I had an injury from how I had to walk(hobbled along) just to keep my shoes on my feet.
It can be hard to find one pair that fulfils your requirements, have you considered
two pairs instead ? Several brides mentioned that they had a backup pair or a lower height pair for the evening. The reasons for this that they gave were to avoid
shoes rubbing, causing aches or hurting from wearing for a whole day. It is such a clever idea when you consider the time you could be wearing them. We all see girls at the end of an evening walking barefoot with stilettos in hand so why not have that
backup pair ready just in case.
Style – Consider your overall look.
Will your shoes be hidden or on show?
Do you want to show off your gorgeous pedicure ?
Is there a detail you can compliment i.e. lace or beading in your dress?
It is really worth taking time to consider the style that suits your feet as well as the look and detail.
Heel Height – Consider
Which heel types and heights suit you best?
Will you and can you walk/dance in them?
Will the height of your shoes compliment your height and your husband’s?
Another Cinderella moment happened to Bride Natalie when her heel got stuck in the floor grille. The church mentioned to take care with the gaps in the floor grilles however on the walk back down the aisle and talking to well wishers Natalie’s heel got stuck. Luckily her husband was to hand and got down on one knee to rescue her shoe.
Heels for many of us make us feel elegant, look taller and improve our posture. If you flick through a bridal magazine you rarely see a bride in any other type of footwear. We do have to heed getting carried away with media perception of ‘Bridal Style’ and really make the choices that suits us.
There is a heel height perfect for each of us whether it be high, medium, low or no heel at all. If we know we can wear strappy high heels, be confident in knowing you have that option however if you have always struggled walking in high heeled perhaps look at alternative options. I found many shoes I loved with stylish with high heels however reality checked in and it was back to the drawing board to re-consider.
Flats can be ideal for brides that feel happiest in flat shoes. For example at a festival style wedding, on grass you may get that sinking feeling as your crisp white stiletto heel sinks into the dirt, glamorous one minute grubby the next. Bride Sarah’s perfect footwear for her wedding was snow boots, she was married at the beautiful Ice hotel and flat footwear was perfect.
The first pair of bridal shoes I ordered were from China (don’t judge I know it can be a gamble) and they were an absolute disaster. Let me explain further, I considered dance shoes, thinking great comfort, elegant and reduces the likelihood of falling on my bum, which was one of my concerns. Ebay looked a great place to hunt down an affordable pair. The picture looked great however on arrival they barely resembled anything you would put on your foot let along wear on your wedding day.
One bride had a dress emergency a few days before her wedding, she tried on her dress with shoes and found it needed shortening. She had been advised by the dress fitter than her dress was perfect in length with her shoes. She had ignored a niggling feeling that that was not the case because they are the experts she thought they knew best. Please avoid this last minute rush and if in doubt check as many times as you need to, they maybe experts but you are the bride who has to be comfortable and walk down the aisle without fear of tripping.
If truth be told no shoes are ugly. Whether it be wedding wellies, Doc Martins, trainers, stilletos, pumps and the list goes on, they all have their place and a bride to whom they meet their expectations and needs.
My ideal shoes were fabulous lace boots that were medium in height, comfortable and wobble free, well for the most part the rest was nerves. They were very affordable and it surprises me to say they were from the high street shop BHS. Upon much research I stumbled (no pun intended ) upon the bridal range that they offered and I found the rare find of my perfect bridal boots, which I still get complimented on even now years later.
Advice from brides
To conclude footwear comes in many shapes and sizes. I wish you luck in finding your perfect shoe and I hope this information helps you choose your ideal shoes to have your your day your way.
With special thanks to Paul Goode for use of his photography www.paulgoodephotography.co.uk and my bride panel who kindly gave their views and pearls of wisdom.
ps- shoe recommendation coming soon
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