Before: The Shoes

1 Aug

Something old, something new, something borrowed, something shoe

Unless you’re planning this photo, no one will see your wedding day shoes!

I went into the process of shopping for my wedding shoes with one all- important (and very freeing!) mantra in mind: no one will actually see my shoes. Unless you’re going for an ankle-length (or more daring) hemline, your guests are only going to catch glimpses of your footwear of choice if you rock out a bit too vigor- ously on the dancefloor. Yes, even if you are a fan of those shoe photos that seem to be all the rage in wedding photography these days (see right), your guests still won’t see your shoes until weeks after the big day when you share the professional snaps.

With this liberating notion in mind, I knew that I was free to choose whatever shoe I desired, for whatever reasons I desired. And the main thing I desired from my wedding day tootsie companions was to feel comfortable. I don’t want to be strapped into tiny shoe straightjackets that pinch and blister. I want to be able to walk comfortably (without fear of toppling down the aisle), I don’t want to worry about the shoes falling (or flying) off during our bridal waltz, and I also don’t want my feet to be so sore that I’m not able to dance the night away at my own wedding – no matter how hot one’s legs look in sky-high heels.

I should also explain that I’m one of those girls that’s just Not Into Shoes. I have a good enough selection of fashion footwear, but I’m someone who on seeing a cute shoe thinks, “Ooh! No, wait, I already have some black strappy heels; I don’t need another pair.” On a no doubt highly related note, I’m also one of those girls who cowers at a towering stiletto. How do women walk in that? Don’t their backs hurt? I like my heels strictly three inches or under, and I know that anything otherwise will leave me screeching like a banshee in pain after an hour or so.

My wedding day tootsie companions

So when it came to buying shoes to wear on my wedd- ing day, I had two require- ments: keep ’em low and keep ’em on my feet! I suppose sneakers would be the best bet, but I also wanted to have something formal and beautiful to fit the occasion, and to make me feel a bit more like a bride. I settled on those shoes shown left, which (mercifully) have just a three-centimeter heel. They also have a strap over the ankle, for peace of mind during our first dance (and for the safety of all who get to close to me on the dancefloor). They are ivory, to match my wedding dress. I’m hoping that these are low enough to keep me comfortable and funking it up the whole evening! I do have a Plan B though, to switch into some pretty, white flip-flops (which I already own) if the need arises, and I will hide these under my chair so that they’re close at hand and ready for duty!

After speaking to a colleague today, I may also keep a pair of higher heels under my chair, though for a different reason. My colleague, married five years ago, mentioned that despite smooth sailing at her and her husband’s wedding dance lessons (and despite a bustle and a hemline an inch above the floor), her groom repeatedly stepped on the bottom of her dress during their bridal waltz. It was not enough to pull down her strapless gown (thankfully!), but enough to distract and make her lose her place. She advised me to practise our dance in a higher pair of shoes, and switch to those when it’s time to burn up the dancefloor, then switch back again. Sounds like excellent advice to me!

How did you choose your wedding shoes? Will you choose function over fashion? Have fun shoe shopping!

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