Words by George Douglas-Davies
Edited by MYSHUBOX.COM Editorial Team
No expense is spared or detail overlooked on wedding days, but less fantasised over (somewhat strangely) are the shoes. Maybe it’s because traditionally the hem of the gown obscures even the delicate point of an open toe court shoe – a strappy number has no chance of making the headlines. However, it would seem very unusual to walk the aisle in flats – so what is the deal with wedding day shoes?
There’s a lot of fancy footwork involved in a wedding. Considering the time it takes to walk down the aisle, complete first, second and third dances and run away from exes or in-laws, it’s no wonder the cliched bride is blushing – she’s flushed! Even if it’s not your special day, one can expect to spend a lot of time on the feet we would recommend a pre-wedding pampering session to prepare the lower limbs for posing for photos, partying and petal throwing.
Whether part of the bridal party or a guest a trip to Mayfair’s DG podiatrist should be the first port of call. We would suggest the ‘Sole of London’ treatment which cleanses the whole foot from toenails to heels with antibacterials followed by a full debridement of hard skin that results in silky smooth skin for weeks, and most importantly – the wedding.
Meghan has always been a shoe fan and is often seen in Tamara Mellon and Aquazzura – anything strappy and in muted colours works well for her. However, this seems less appropriate for a wedding even if it’s a summer ceremony. She is, however, a big Manolo Blahnik fan, we predict that this may be her designer of choice on the day.
The future Duchess of Sussex is no doubt experiencing all the flutters that come with the ‘biggest day of your life.’ Though she will have a team of professionals to lean on, there’s no doubt that the experience will come with its own unique hurdles as Meghan has a rich history of royalty, Hollywood and otherwise, to stand out from and if there’s one thing Royalty know how to do its pomp and ceremony. Princess Margaret’s decision to marry Lord Snowdon in 1958 may have been deemed by many to be inappropriate, but no one can deny her choice of footwear was impeccable. A pump with a slightly squared toe, rendered in satin with a low block heel kept her grounded beneath metres of fabric and were the perfect companion to a gown simplistic in its detail, yet striking and grand in silhouette. Almost half a century later, Kate Middleton opted for a riskier choice and a higher heel for her wedding to Prince William. In keeping with her dress, the traditional ivory Duchesse satin shoes were designed by Sarah Burton, hand-embroidered with lace by the Royal School of Needlework. Her bridesmaids were also treated to matching, hand-dyed, shoes from the Rainbow Club.
Other, less publicised and more surprising shoe requests come from Princesses Diana and Grace. For her wedding with Prince Charles at Westminster Abbey, Diana wore shoes designed by celeb cobbler Clive Shilton that carried a secret message. Beneath the 542 sequins and 132 pearls that took 6 months to put together, a small C and D were engraved on each heel to commemorate her love of her soon to be husband. At 5”11, Diana’s main concern when commissioning her shoes was that she wouldn’t tower over her husband, so opted for a low heel which also proved to be very practical when stopping her from falling over inside her huge Elizabeth and David Emanuel gown! Similarly, Grace Kelly’s spring wedding to the Prince of Monaco called for some Cinderella-level slippers. Her dress, a parting gift from MGM studios’ costume designer Helen Rose, was completed with 2 ½ inch heeled custom shoes by David Evins – a friend of the bride and revered American shoe-maker. Rendered in matching lace, Grace unusually requested that a copper penny be hidden inside the arch of her right shoe, a traditional good luck token for brides.
For Meghan and Harry’s wedding, we expect a star-studded guest list of all their closest friends, including fashion designer Misha Noonoo, the cast of Suits (including Meghan’s on-screen love interest) and Chelsy Davy, Harry’s off-screen ex-love interest.
Post-wedding, newly-weds Meghan and Harry will be off on their Honeymoon. Our guess is Namibia. The pair have previously visited several exotic countries and are both interested in the conservation efforts in Africa – one of the Royal’s principal causes. Experts have predicted the pair will be off to the ultra-discreet Hoanib Valley Camp, nestled in the remote Kaokoland, Nambia. Whilst in Nambia, a visit to the Ai-Ais Hot Springs Resort by the Fish River Canyon nature reserve seems like the perfect place to unwind after a day’s exploring. The spring was actually discovered almost two centuries ago by a young Nama sheepherder and is the perfect place for a soak in the warm water to naturally relieve joint and muscle pains, stress and aches.
If history has taught us anything, it’s that a traditional, floor-length gown calls for a traditional, low to the ground shoe that prioritises comfort over couture. However, with footwear one can experiment with personalisation. Engraving, colour and unexpected details will be difficult to regret when looking back at your wedding album. Note: don’t be scared of breaking tradition with some elegant ballet flats, it worked for Keira Knightley!