Caralyn Mirand is a plus-size model, bride-to-be, upstate New Yorker, and the lifestyle blogger behind the website CaralynMirand.com. Here, she shares her tips for finding size-inclusive wedding shoes.
I've been wearing a size 11 shoe ever since I was in middle school, so I know how to be savvy when it comes to shopping for a new pair of shoes. After I found my wedding dress and my bridesmaids' gowns, the next item on my big-day to-do list was purchasing the perfect pair of shoes to complete my look. Unfortunately, despite years of expertise beneath my belt, I had no idea how difficult it was going to be. I needed an evening shoe that was fashionable, reasonably-priced, and comfortable enough to wear all night, which meant it couldn't be too high. Even though I wear all kinds of shoes for my job, I still prefer to wear flats and low heels when I can. Needless to say, the search required a lot of patience.
I set out looking for a cute pair of shoes with a low heel that was available in my size and quickly learned that very few brands offered something that would work. I was excited to learn that Adrianna Papell, a designer known for size-inclusive gowns, offers shoes ranging from size 5 to 12, and the brand has a wide variety of different styles to choose from. Badgley Mischka was another brand that checked all of my must-have boxes. Their shoes are so timeless, available in a variety of different heights, and range in size from 5 to 11. Other retailers, like Nordstrom, Designer Shoe Warehouse, and Amazon carry shoes in so many different sizes (Amazon actually goes up to 16!), so I was able to really broaden my search once I knew where to shop.
It's not just about finding your size, though. When it comes to shoe shopping as a bride at any size, here are my best pieces of advice.
Remember that function and fashion are not mutually exclusive.
Sure, you may have to do a little digging, but it is possible to find a shoe that fits you, is stylish, and is comfortable enough to wear all night long. Don't compromise on that last point: Your feet will thank you when you're able to wear your wedding shoes throughout the day and night.
Keep an open mind.
Like most things related to your wedding, you need to be open to trying new things. With shoes, you'll likely have to try on at least a handful of pairs until you find one you love. Luckily, online retailers make it easy to order and return different options, so I took advantage of those perks (after carefully reading the return policies!) so that I could see several styles at once. It doesn't hurt to try something that you're on the fence about!
Start shopping for wedding shoes early.
And by early, I mean as soon as you purchase your wedding dress. As soon as your gown comes in, you're going to have to start the alteration process, and you'll need to have your shoes at the very first appointment. You don't want to be scrambling to find something before your first fitting, only to end up regretting your shoe choice.