Confession: it took me longer to find my wedding shoes than my wedding dress. I wish I was joking! However, through my slight mishaps I actually learned quite a lot, and today I want to pass my advice over to you! You may have noticed that there’s a pretty important wedding happening tomorrow (good luck Harry and Meghan!) so this feels like the perfect topic to chat about today. Here are my tips on how to find your perfect wedding shoes!
A couple of notes before we start: My shoes were the Irregular Choice Nick Of Time heels. They are available on the Irregular Choice website, but I actually bought mine from Amazon in the end as they had a great deal on the shoes in my size. Also (as always with my wedding posts) these photos were taken by the incredible Sarah Horton on our big day at Combermere Abbey in Cheshire. She’s amazing!
Decide What You Want To Say With Your Shoes
I bet you weren’t expecting that to be my first tip, were you? My goal with my wedding shoes was to express some of my personality – I’ve loved Irregular Choice for as long as I can remember, and knew I wanted my shoes to be from the brand. I love the quirky designs and unusual shapes of the shoes, and because my dress was fairly traditional (absolutely enormous and a total statement, but classic nonetheless) I wanted my shoes to have an element of fun to them.
Once I’d got the starting point of Irregular Choice, it helped to narrow down my search. To be honest, I hadn’t found anything by any other brand that I remotely liked, so it was a natural winner for me to gravitate towards them. One of the great things about Irregular Choice is that, as wedding shoes go, they’re pretty reasonably priced – plus, they have SO many designs both past and present, so if you’re up for a good old search around the internet you’re bound to find something you love.
Think About The Heel Height
As you can see from the photo above, my wedding dress was pretty epic! I wanted to make sure the height of my heels was manageable on the day, as I knew I’d have enough to contend with with my dress. The heel height of the Nick Of Time shoes is 3.5 inches, which I found to be just perfect – I had ordered some others from Irregular Choice which were just way too high and I’m so glad I made the change. To be fair I did end up kicking them off on the dancefloor during the evening, but that’s because I was really going for it. I mean, really going for it (there was no way I wasn’t going to dance all night to pop punk tunes!).
Don’t be afraid to try on as many pairs of shoes as you need to purely to make sure the heel height works for you. If you’re used to skyscraper heels then yay, awesome! But if not, your wedding day definitely isn’t the time to learn to walk in high shoes. Do whatever feels comfortable – I guarantee that you’ll find a pair that are just right in both design and height if you start your hunt early enough.
Practise, Practise, Practise
This totally applies to the process of finding your shoes, not only when you’ve finally decided on a pair. Whether you’re shopping online or in store, don’t commit to your wedding shoes until you’ve spent a chunk of time practising your walk in them. Just be sure to walk on carpet so you don’t damage the soles of the shoes! Practising walking in them will help to determine so many things: are they comfortable? Do they rub my feet in any weird places? Is the heel the right height? Do I feel steady on my feet? Are these going to last me an entire day and night without making me want to throw them into a fire pit?
I ended up returning so many pairs of shoes because of the reasons listed above. ‘Rubbing my feet in weird places’ was a top factor actually – this can sometimes be solved by sizing up or down, but occasionally it’s just the design of the shoe that isn’t right. Don’t settle for something that isn’t perfect when it comes to your wedding shoes, as the last thing you want on your big day is to be in pain or super uncomfortable courtesy of a bad pair of heels.
Consider Your Surroundings
This may be a given, but it’s so important to think about your venue and the kind of surfaces you’ll be walking on. My wedding shoes had a good sturdy heel rather than being a stiletto style, as I knew I’d be walking on gravel, stone, grass and polished floors during the course of our wedding day. I’m a pretty clumsy person at the best of times, and my wedding day definitely wouldn’t have been the optimal time to fall over and break my ankle, so I kept in mind that my shoes would need to be pretty solid and Chyaz-proof.
Now the reason there aren’t more photos of my shoes in this post is because during the course of the day, they did get a little trashed; there’s a beautiful lake at Combermere Abbey that we ventured down to for some photographs and the heels did get pretty muddy. It’s another reason why I didn’t want to end up spending hundreds on my shoes, and why they’re not generally something I invest a load of money into for everyday life either. However, if you’ve always dreamed of walking down the aisle rocking some Jimmy Choo heels, you do you!
Try To Buy Them Sooner Rather Than Later
If you’re having your dress made or altered to fit you, you’ll need to make sure you have your shoes ready to go before those fittings. I didn’t have my shoes for my initial dress try-ons, but for any alteration appointments I had to wear them (for obvious dress length-related reasons!). Don’t panic if you haven’t found your perfect shoes yet, but try to make it a priority – there are certain things you can sort out nearer to the day, like extra props or bits of decor, but having your shoes all good to go is a little more time-specific.
More importantly than anything else, try to enjoy the process! It did stress me out a little at times, but finding your wedding shoes is one of the more fun parts of the planning. I’m going to get my shoes professionally cleaned and wear them again at the first given opportunity, as I absolutely freakin’ love them.
Please feel free to share your own tips below, too!