How to Choose the Perfect Wedding Shoes
Photo: Flickr: t_fern / Creative Commons
Something old, something new, something borrowed and the PERFECT WEDDING SHOE!
Melbourne Podiatrist and Newly-Wed Leah Waters shares her tips on how to choose the perfect shoes for your wedding day.
It may sound like a simple thing.
Choose some pretty shoes that look great with your wedding gown and make you feel like a Goddess. Think again…your wedding shoes can make or break the overall look for your big day. Worse still, they can result in sore feet and ‘fake’ smiles on your wedding day.
I’m certainly not saying wear something ugly but follow these few simple steps to be sure your wedding day really is the best day of your life… not just from the ankles up!
Remember, when buying your wedding shoes, it's not like the dress which you will only ever wear once. A pair of beautiful shoes can be a great investment, as you can wear them over and over again at a formal occasion in the future.
What colour dress are you wearing on the big day and do your shoes compliment your dress?
Your shoes may hardly be seen on your wedding day (depending on the style of your gown), however, it’s still important that they suit the style of the dress (and the wedding). Be careful to either match the colour with your dress, or go for a complete contrast. For example, white shoes with an ivory or champagne dress will look awful.
There are many stores/websites which can custom dye the colour of your shoes to match your dress (or even your bridesmaids’ dresses or flowers?). Alternatively look for a contrast in gold, silver, pewter or completely different colour. Again make sure that whichever colour you choose, it should still tie in with the theme for the rest of your wedding.
Flicker: elpadawan / Creative Commons
What fabric is your dress made from and will this affect your shoe choice?
Many current fashion dresses are either lace or highly embellished around the hem and you need to take this into account to ensure nothing ‘snags’ during your wedding celebrations. Often shoes may too have similar embellishments and you need to ensure the hem of your dress is unlikely to catch on your shoes.
If your dress is likely to be an issue, I suggest going for a simple satin or leather style that does not have too many details likely to catch. (This may also be something to consider with jewellery such as bracelets?)
Flickr: wck / Creative Commons
Which heel height will be most appropriate (and comfortable) for the day?
How long are you likely to be on your feet?
Are you planning a longer traditional ceremony, or short and sweet ‘I do’s’?
Are there any obstacles you need to consider? Steep hills, stairs, uneven surfaces, soft grass or gravel?
Any of these factors can lead to instability. The higher your heels, the greater the risk of tripping or rolling your ankle. Not ideal.
Will you be standing at your reception?
Will it be a traditional sit-down dinner reception or a cocktail style party?
You want to be able to party with ease and mingle amongst your guests without being uncomfortable. Also, consider those around you.
How tall is your husband to be, father of the bride and bridesmaids?
Are you likely to tower over the rest of the wedding party in photos or are you vertically challenged like me and keen for any extra height you can get?
Make sure you can comfortably walk and stand in your wedding shoes.
Flickr: dainismatisons / Creative Commons
Stability and comfort features…
Extra support and cushioning can be the difference between a good shoe and a great shoe.
Wedges – Wedged shoes help to distribute the pressure in your feet, meaning increased comfort and stability. You will still be on the dance floor hours into your reception in a comfy pair of wedges.
Thicker or ‘Stacked’ heels – whilst stilettos and kitten heels look gorgeous, they place your feet in a precariously unstable position, increasing your likelihood of injury. You will feel much better in a thicker, more stable heel and you have no need to worry about sinking into grass or wobbling on uneven surfaces.
Platforms – The advantage of a small platform is that it increases the overall height of the shoe without increasing the pitch or angle of the heel. This gives you that little bit of extra height without the sore toes associated with super tall stilettos.
Ankle Straps – Any shoe with a strap to secure it to your foot will instantly be more comfortable. There is no potential for your heel to slip out of your shoe half way down the aisle and the muscles in your toes can relax as they are not ‘clawing’ to hold the shoes on.
Flickr: goetter / Creative Commons
Buy your wedding shoes well in advance…
By purchasing your shoes early on, you have plenty of time to wear them in around the house and make sure they are comfortable. Take note too of if the soles are particularly slippery. You can ‘rough them up’ with a bit of sandpaper to help improve their grip. This also provides the opportunity to check for any particular areas that are rubbing and likely to cause blisters during your wedding. This means you can protect them in advance to avoid pain when it’s most important. When it comes time to have your gown fitted, the dressmaker will need to know how long to make the hem/train and you will need to have your shoes at these appointments.
Play with protective cushions and padding…
There are a range of cushioning options on the market which can help add a little extra shock absorption and provide added comfort. Check with your local pharmacy or Podiatrist about the alternatives available and trial different padding options to see what works best.
Note – Remember that adding extra padding into your shoes will take up extra space and could affect the fit!
Have a backup plan…
Consider the worst case scenario. You bought shoes you love. They look amazing but perhaps aren’t the most sensible choice. Avoid ending up on the dance floor barefoot, by having a backup pair to change into later. This may be a lower heel or even some cute ballet slippers.
If you are like me and love any excuse for an amazing pair of shoes, you will end up with 2 pairs for your wedding day. I have my tall, pretty and not so sensible ones for the ceremony and photos. Then a gorgeous pair of wedges with an ankle strap to dance the night away.
Comfort doesn’t mean you need to compromise on fashion, sometimes you just need to be a little more savvy with where you shop and also looking into online options. Remember, if your shoes are killing your feet, it’s the fastest way to wipe the smile off your face. Happy wedding planning!
Hopefully, this article has helped you know what to look for when you're finding comfortable wedding shoes Melbourne.
To read more of Leah’s tips on footwear options and foot-care, head to http://pivotalpodiatry.com.au