If you’re reading this and are either married or a bride-to-be, you will totally get where I’m coming from. Bridal shoes are historically ugly. It’s just the way it is. Everything is elaborate, with embellishment, strange heel heights, often a hideously pointy-point that you would NEVER usually wear. When I first got engaged I wondered around the shops seeing what was on offer and quite frankly I was put off altogether. Yes there are A LOT to choose from, but when you see 50+ wedding shoes and they are all disgusting, you do need to wonder how on earth you’re going to get round this. My dear friend who is getting married this August opted for some show stopping Miu Miu heels from Selfridges – ideal for the kind of dress she is wearing and the perfect way around the ‘ugly bridal shoe’ phenomenon.
The thing is, you’re not really going to be able to see my shoes, so I don’t need a pair of show-stoppers, all I want is a nice pair of bridal shoes – who knew it would be so hard!
Examples of the kind of bridal shoes available from the high-street…. need I say more?
Isn’t it bad enough that we have to buy a dress we will only wear once, but the shoes. Man are they awful. You at least want a nice pair to potentially only wear once! Then, like the holy grail of shoe designs, along came my friends at bespoke luxury shoe brand UpperStreet.com to save the day. Yes, you may have seen me tweeting them, or my blog last year about how great they were… but honestly, if you’re a bride who doesn’t want a pair of ugly shoes – GO TO UPPERSTREET!
A couple of weeks ago, I was lucky enough to be invited down to their new studio ‘The Shoe Lounge‘ in Highbury, Islington for a design session with their lovely Head of Customer Services, Lizzie. Situated in a beautiful town house, The Shoe Lounge offers a tranquil heaven full to the brim with shoe designs and samples for you to get to grips with and get your heels into.
Having worked with UpperStreet a few times, I’m quite familiar with the design process. I know the website inside out, I know the heel heights and all the details available…. so I thought this would be a 10 minute job – but I was wrong. I wondered into the studio and first tried on some sample shoes they had in the different styles available. All black and totally plain, it was quite easy to get to grips with what I thought I wanted. I went into the studio with a design in mind, but after trying on the shoes and working on heel heights, I opted for the non-platform option.
The thing I always struggle with is the ‘fit’ of a shoe. I’m a 6 with some brands, a 7 with others, and my left foot is slightly shorter than my right. Annoying. I have to say, the first pair of shoes Lizzie gave me fitted perfectly (as a 7). Not too snug but not falling off, I stomped around the wooden floors checking constantly how they felt – and to be honest – they felt perfect in every way. With my dress being a one-off sample, I knew I needed a specific heel height, and luckily the non-platform option provided the height I needed.
Being able to design your own personal bridal shoes means there are no limits – tear up the rule book and be as individual as you like. What better way to make your wedding day the most amazing day of your life, than creating your own bespoke wedding shoe. Whether you want bright shoes to add a dash of colour to your day, ivory shoes with blue bridal insole for a unique way to incorporate something blue, or they’ve even designed shoes in animal print for a bride who was getting married in a zoo!
I cannot recommend going for the one-on-one appointments enough. The colours I originally wanted (in above picture) did not look exactly like the satin shades when I saw them in the flesh. It’s so hard to get shades of satin right on a digital image, it’s just not worth the risk. My actual final shoes are similar colours to the style above, but on the digital image they look like the below. Stay tuned for the official pair when I receive them in a few weeks.
Whatever you choose to wear, you’ll want to experience your first steps into the next phase of your life in shoes that are perfect for you, and with Upper Street you can do just that.