Everything You Need to Know About Choosing Your Wedding Shoes

Jewelry & Accessories
Tips For Choosing The Right Shoes For Your Wedding

Photo: Perry Vaile

When it comes to your wedding shoes, comfort is key! After all, anybody who has ever really thought about Cinderella's glass slippers knows she didn't accidentally lose one on her way to the carriage — she'd taken those painful heels-from-hell off hours before. Sadly, often the prettiest shoes are not meant for comfortably dancing all night.What's a bride to do?

Obviously, you want to wear something pretty on your feet, but do they have to be high heels? And what if you want to wear them for your wedding ceremony, but not the entire reception? Or vice versa.We've got the answers.

Do not attempt to wear heels of any kind on the sand for a beach ceremony. They will sink in, and you will lurch your way down the aisle. You'll be wiggling through the wedding ceremony as you unstick yourself, or you won't be concentrating on your wedding vows because you're concentrating on keeping your weight completely on your toes. It's a losing battle either way.

Heels on a lawn can be almost as tricky, especially if it has rained recently. Not only will you be uncomfortable, you'll destroy those beautiful shoes. Wedges are a better choice, but consider ones not made of fabric so that they can be effectively cleaned after the ceremony. If the reception is indoors, you can switch to another shoe of the same height after the ceremony and pictures.

The trick is to make sure that you have the bridal shop hem your wedding gown to the appropriate length for whatever shoe you decide to wear for your wedding ceremony. Nothing looks worse than a too-long dress on a bride as she walk down the aisle, kicking it out in front of her.

See More: Wedding Shoe Shopping Tips Direct from a Bridal Stylist

However, nobody will notice if you opt to go barefoot on a beach, for example, and then slip into heels for your first dance at the wedding reception. If anything, they'll actually see the shoes when they probably wouldn't have if the dress was longer.

The trick is that it's much harder to go backwards — as in, wearing super-high platform heels for the ceremony, and then dropping down to ballet flats during the reception. That's when the dress really gets in the way. It will get stepped on by guests on the dance floor.

If you know you're going to want to wear lower shoes for the reception, do your best not to select the highest possible heels for the ceremony. And consider a lower shoe that isn't actually flat for the reception. Have the gown hemmed shorter than the bridal shop recommends. They never like to shorten a gown for a shoe change, but that decision is ultimately up to you.

Sandy Malone is the owner of Sandy Malone Weddings & Events and author of How to Plan Your Own Destination Wedding: Do-It-Yourself Tips from an Experienced Professional. Sandy is the star of TLC's reality show Wedding Island, about her destination wedding planning company, Weddings in Vieques.

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