Tuesday, April 10, 2007

The 1920s wedding shoe hunt is finally over!

Back in November, I posted about a pair of modern T-strap shoes I'd found that I was considering wearing for the wedding. After I posted, however, the woman I bought my wedding dress from suggested that I look for a pair of vintage T-strap shoes, and sent me a picture. Predictably, I fell in love, and my hunt began.

I quickly discovered that it is darned difficult to find 80-year-old shoes in my size (a size 8, albeit narrow). I looked and looked, and finally found two different vintage possibilities, as well as a modern reproduction as backup. I'm sure many of you will understand when I say that I bought all three.

When I got the first pair, an ivory pair of Marshall Fields shoes dating from the late 20s or 30s, I discovered they had never been worn. The down side of that is that they had also never even been broken in -- so they were stiff and narrow. I couldn't even get my foot into them.

The second pair is absolutely adorable, a Grecian-looking pair of high-heeled, T-strap sandals from the 1930s. Unfortunately, they came in a lovely shade of mint green, which means they can't be dyed the same color as my dress -- they can only be dyed darker.

The third pair is just a Kenneth Cole 20s-inspired shoe in white satin, with rounded toes and thick high heels.

Having lost hope in wearing my first choice, the ivory Marshall Fields shoes, I decided to have the Grecian ones stretched a bit (they're stiff and shrunken from being stored improperly) and dyed. I picked out a color the best I could -- a dark ecru, which might go well since my dress is a light ecru... But then again, it might be too dark, as it is after all a wedding, and the style of my dress means that my feet will be on display. I'll be getting those shoes back on Monday.

In the meantime, I was finally able to pick my dress up from the seamstress's today (and the alterations are perfect!). After seeing the gown again, I began worrying all over again that the color on the Grecian shoes will be too dark. As I was worrying about it, I decided to try on the ivory shoes again.

Over the past few months, I have been trying to cram my feet into the Marshall Fields shoes periodically. Apparently, that's done the trick, because tonight I was finally able to get them on. They were a little snug at first, but I wore them around the house for about an hour, and they quickly started to break in. I am going to continue wearing them off and on over the next few days, and if that doesn't help I'll have them stretched slightly (just a little around the ball of the foot) next week.

Below are a couple of pictures of the ivory Marshall Fields shoes. Sorry I can't show you pictures of the Grecian shoes, but they are still at the cobbler's. I'll post pictures next week after I get them back.



At 4:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Those are so adorable. I am hoping to do a 1920's themed wedding and am sure that I am going to have trouble finding shoes. But you found great ones.

At 2:18 PM, Blogger Katharine Swan said...

Thanks for visiting, Anonymous!

If you have time to look, you may just get lucky. Measure your feet and keep an eye on vintage shoe auctions on eBay.

Be sure to exhaust your options for new shoes, too. You might find a vintage-inspired style that works for what you want!

At 2:04 PM, Anonymous Kerie said...

Katharine! I was so glad to find your website! My fiance and I are hoping to have a somewhat 1920's theme at our wedding in May 2010 and I have to find shoes! I love the ones you found! Keep sharing your experiences.. I'll be following! :)


At 10:30 PM, Blogger Katharine Swan said...

Kerie, I'm glad you're finding my blog useful! Best of luck planning your 1920s wedding -- I have to say planning ours was SO much fun!


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