In collaboration with LK Bennett
I’ve never been the kind of girl who dreamt about the details of her wedding day. I’m not sure if that’s something I should file under ‘Don’t Say Out Loud’ alongside hating rom coms and rarely plucking my eyebrows, but while my friends were mentally picking out flower arrangements I conceded to the fact that I was missing the bride gene. I didn’t dream about the big white dress or create scrap books on table settings. But, thanks to a shoe obsession in my early twenties, the one thing I was sure about is that my wedding shoes would be bright, colourful and unique.
A decade later and a mere few weeks away from my wedding day, my dress is pressed and my dream wedding shoes are box fresh and ready to be packed. But it won’t be a flash of red or a hint of blue that will be peeking out from underneath the ivory layers down the aisle. While my style has naturally adapted over the years, my penchant for colourful pumps and embroidered mules has been replaced with natural tones, universal neutrals and elegant cuts that will stand the test of time. Which is why I knew that LK Bennett’s new collaborative collection with wedding dress designer, Jenny Packham would be the perfect addition to my big day.
Marrying the polished aesthetic of a high street favourite with the high fashion elegance of one of the country’s best bridal designers, the collection goes beyond the classic expectations of wedding shoes. I struggled for a long time to find a pair that were traditional but edgy, romantic but modern and one-of-kind but wearable. I knew that I didn’t want to reserve them to a dusty box in the wardrobe where there’d stay long after ‘I do’. I wanted to wear them beyond the vows and first dance and be reminded of that day every time I did.
LK Bennett X Jenny Packham may not be the shoes I envisioned as a young woman finding my way in the world, but they were the clear choice for a 30 year-old bride-to-be who has never been so sure of herself, what she wants and where she’s going. When I anxiously await a brides entrance, there are two things I look out for – the look on the groom’s face when he sees his love and the bride’s shoes. Although the dress is the star of the show, there’s something so private, so off-limits about the footwear a bride chooses to hide beneath her layers of tulle and lace. Like their lingerie, it’s an element of their style that’s reserved just for them, chosen carefully and with no other objective other than to add something utterly beautiful to their day.
From courts to sandals, stiletto’s to kitten, the choice is overwhelming, but your thought process needn’t be with these hints I’ve come to learn.
DON’T LEAVE THEM AS A SECOND THOUGHT
The dress, the hair, the jewellery – there’s a lot of details to consider when it comes to pulling together your wedding day look. It’s easy to get swept away in the bigger details and leave your wedding shoes as an after-thought. “No one will see them, it doesn’t matter,” you will most likely to be told by your nearest and dearest. While this may be technically true, your shoes will be one of your most important assets on the day.
Not only do you need to be comfortable standing for long periods of time, those little flashes of toe of shoe as you pick up your dress, sit down or spin around the dance floor are just as important as everything else.
THROW OUT THE RULE BOOK
Remember that twenty-something who wanted colourful wedding shoes? She may have changed her style, but she was fearless enough to challenge the norm. And there’s no reason you can’t too. While cream, white or ivory shoes are traditional, opting for something different is a contemporary way to add your personality into your day. LK Bennett X Jenny Packham’s baby blue hues of their most popular styles is a sweet yet modern touch to give your dress a contrast. Whether it’s sparkly trainers a la Father of The Bride or electric blue courts like Carrie Bradshaw, your wedding shoes are a great opportunity to get creative.
WEAR THEM IN
I know, as brides-to-be, we want everything to be shiny and new on our wedding day and that includes a pair of box-fresh heels free from chips and scuffs. But, how many times have you worn a new pair of shoes on a night out and have had to beg your bestie/boyfriend to carry you to the car? Yep, blisters and sores are a quick-fire way to ruin your day so make sure you trial your wedding shoes around the house a couple of weeks or months before your impending nuptials. You won’t be sorry when you’re the one tottering in your beloved shoes come midnight when everyone else is in bare feet.
THINK ABOUT THE HEEL HEIGHT
As someone who can drive, run and negotiate cobbled streets, this one pains me somewhat. Whether you opt for a stiletto or a kitten heel, it’s important to be comfortable on the day. From saying your vows to greeting guests to dancing into the night, you’re going to be on your feet for the majority of the day. If you wear heels on a regular basis, a 3-4 inch style should be plenty to see you through the day in style. But if you rarely slip on those special occasion sandals, a kitten heel would be best and you’ll be perfectly on-trend for this season too! Although my mum pleaded with me to opt for a sensible heel height, I feel far more comfortable in at least a 4 incher and will be the last one to kick off my heels on the day!
DON’T JUST SHOP ONLINE
As an avid online shopper, this one left me feeling conflicted but it’s a must. Although I ordered a couple of pairs online, I underestimated the power of actual shopping when it comes to choosing wedding shoes. LK Bennett’s peaceful and chic retail spaces left me feeling calm and focused instead of overwhelmed flicking from one website to the next. Not only did I take my girlfriends with me for some much-needed advice, I saved so much time trying on multiple pairs then and there instead of faffing around with online returns.
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