Thursday, July 16, 2009

When Cinderella lost her glass slipper, her prince came to find her. Dorothy only had to tap her sparkly red pumps in order to go home again. And Carrie Bradshaw forever influenced fashionable footwear by popularizing the stiletto heel.

It’s no secret that women are serious about their shoes, and they make no exception when it comes to their wedding day. More and more, brides are choosing to make a statement with spectacular footwear that “steps away” from the traditional pump.

Nikki Wiatrek chose a pair of silver open-toe heels, complete with rhinestone adornment and an ankle strap, for her afternoon May wedding to Tim Jarzombek.

“After I picked out my dress, I decided to add some spice to my look,” says Wiatrek, who chose hot pink, green and chocolate for her wedding colors. “I don’t normally wear that much white all at once and when I tried on traditional white shoes, they didn’t fit my personality.”

Wiatrek says the heels she found went a long way to complete the “very original” wedding day ensemble she desired. To ensure her look was one-of-a-kind, Wiatrek even added custom beading to the wedding gown she bought at Alfred Angelo.

“The sparkly shoes complemented my dress perfectly!” she says.

A Step Toward Stunning

Elizabeth Campos, owner of Bella’s Bridal of Stone Oak, is noticing a trend toward non-traditional wedding footwear. She says metallics - not only silver, but bronze and gold - have become popular as wedding gowns are designed in deeper shades of ivory and tones of gold. Women are also wearing colored shoes for their nuptials, she says.

“I’ve had lots of brides pick shoes in the coordinating color of their bridesmaid dresses,” Campos says. “It sounds kind of funny, but it looks beautiful when it’s all put together.”

With dyeable wedding shoes a bride can coordinate her footwear in any shade she desires.

“Red has been big for quite some time,” she continues. “One bride even picked a strappy red, satin shoe and it looked amazing. We’re also seeing black shoes worn under a white or ivory gown, and, of course, pink is always popular.”

Choosing to make a dramatic shoe statement with color or with embellishment - like an oversized bow, straps or a brooch detail - is a response to recent trends, Campos says.

“Brides that are very fashion-forward are the ones getting away from a basic shoe,” she says. “They are very open to ideas and follow the trends.”

While satin remains the standard fabric for wedding shoes, styles change season-to-season based on what’s seen on the runway. For example, platform soles with three-to four-inch heels are popular for brides right now.

Toe-tapping trends

Angela Gilcrease, manager of Puttin’ on the Ritz, also sees a surge in strappy shoes for brides, regardless of what season their wedding falls in. She says her customers lean towards the sexier look because that’s what they wear in everyday life.

“It’s more stylish than a regular pump,” Gilcrease says. “The girls like to get their toes done. It’s just a prettier look.”

Still, Gilcrease offers sensible advice to her clients when it comes to choosing wedding day footwear.

“You definitely don’t want to take away from your dress,” she cautions. “If you’ve got a fully laced gown and it’s embroidered down to the floor, do a pretty plain sandal, nothing too extravagant. Still, many wedding gowns are fairly simple, if so, you can get away with a little glitz, like beads or a brooch on a shoe.”

Gilcrease adds that she often encounters brides who use their footwear to fulfill the “something blue” on their list. One of her recent customers requested that her shoes be dyed baby blue. Another found shoes online with a little surprise underneath - a blue sole.

Blue Tux Shoes makes wedding shoes with a signature gray-blue sole. The line is available at The Bridal Salon of San Antonio. Ariel McCormick, a bridal consultant at the salon, says this line is popular because customers are looking for something unique to wear on their feet.

“We tend to carry shoes that have a little bit of pop,” she explains. “With current wedding fashion, brides are celebrated for being a little bit different, whether with the dress or the shoe. There used to be a certain format you had to go with. Now, people have more freedom to do what they want.”

Fit for a Fashionista

As in the case of Nikki Wiatrek, McCormick says brides often look for a wedding shoe that fits their personality.

“If they’re really girly and fun, they’ll wear a shoe that has sequins or a bow,” she says. “If they’re more laid back, they’ll wear ballet slippers, tennis shoes or even cowboy boots under their dress.”

McCormick goes on to say that in Texas, where fuller wedding gowns are popular, brides can get away with almost anything on their feet, since the shoe is only exposed when she takes a stride, or during activities like the garter toss.

“It’s kind of fun because it’s like peek-a-boo,” she says of out-of-the ordinary shoes.

No matter how much drama a woman is looking to add to her wedding day ensemble, “there’s always something new coming out,” Gilcrease says, assuring every bride-to-be that the possibilities are endless for a statement-making shoe.

1 comment:

  1. A lot of people don't realize what a statement a pair of shoes or a piece of jewelry can make! Have fun with it!