A few months ago, my friend Joanna came over for dinner wearing a beautiful pair of bright pink Miu Miu heels. "Great shoes," I said. "Thanks, love, I wore them to my wedding," she said. Aha! Wedding shoes, that aren't really bridal. Now you're speaking my language.
Joanna's lovely pink Miu Miu heels
As someone who has loved fashion since age 7, I was truly excited about creating the head-to-toe look for my big day. I loved trying on dresses at Oscar de La Renta, Lanvin, Alice Temperley, and finally, the boutique where I would make the big purchase, Carolina Herrera. Immediately following the dress selection, I started dreaming about shoes. The dreaming turned into purchasing, and the purchasing quickly turned into returning. Here is the tale of how I bought three pairs of shoes (and returned two).
When I saw these sapphire-blue Manolo Blahniks, I literally became breathless. The color is drop-dead gorgeous, and it alludes to that old saying, "something borrowed, something blue." I love the bow, which felt like a nod to all things bridal, without being over the top. I could see myself wearing these in my normal life, an idea that becomes very, very appealing during this time of spending a ton of money on a party that lasts for exactly one evening.
Blue Manolo Blahniks
I brought 'em home, wore 'em around the house, and finally wore them to my first dress fitting. And after ten minutes of standing around, my feet weren't only aching -- they were numb and slightly misshapen, and they'd taken on a purple hue. No shade of cobalt is worth that pain.
Metallic Lanvin heels
Next, I wanted to try something more neutral. In addition to the pain factor, my gut told me that a colored shoe distracted from the dress rather than enhancing it. These metallic Lanvins seemed like just the ticket. They even had a little platform for comfort. When I fed this line to my friend and trusted advisor Deb, she asked "Can I be honest with you?" (everyone needs a friend like Deb, by the way). She went on to say something along the lines of: "Stop kidding yourself and return the shoes immediately. They won't be comfortable, the spindly heel will tear your dress, and they're too much of a statement. Just go for something simple."
So that is how I wound up with the lovely pair of silver Jimmy Choos with a 2-inch heel (above). Are they pretty? Of course. Will they be comfortable? Absolutely. Do they make my heart stop? No, not really. But in this case, that might actually be a good thing. The real test will come later this week, when I take them with me to Carolina Herrera for my second fitting. I'm excited to see how they look with the dress.
But I'm curious what you think: When it comes to wedding shoes, what's more important, comfort or fashion? And, when it comes to wedding fashion, isn't it all about the dress, anyway?
Los Angeles-based Heather Taylor owns Taylor De Cordoba, a contemporary art gallery. She publishes the blog LA in Bloom and writes a bi-monthly column Chef Speak for The Huffington Post. She is getting married on June 5, 2011.