‘Sorry we don’t have that size.’ If you are outside the normal shoe size range you’ve probably heard this more than once while shopping for your wedding shoes. Most shoe shops sell from size 3 to a size 8 (UK size). If you fall outside this category the choice gets limited and in some areas is non-existent.
A size 1 to 2 is the equivalent of a 6-8 year old shoe size. Most shops direct women of this size to the children’s section but at your age you are probably not looking for a sandal or welly with a Barbie motif. There are only three to four manufacturers of small size shoes in the world. They are based in Italy and Spain. If you are a size two you are more likely to get your size in a small boutique as these generally sell Italian and/or Spanish shoes. Roughly 3% of women in Ireland are over a size 8 in shoes. Many women with feet over a size 8 tend to wear runners or men’s shoes and will dress down in trousers with wide legs to hide their horrible choice of shoes. Women with small or large feet often buy shoes first and then the outfit to go with them as its impossible to do it the other way around.
Gina Hennessy set up Cinderella Shoes after she spent a number of years researching and sourcing large shoe stockist around the world. She is a size 9 herself and could never find shoes to fit. She stocks elegant shoes in size range 8 ½ to 12 in narrow and wide fittings and has showrooms in Tullamore, Co Offaly. Customers register with Cinderella Shoes and if there are a number of people in one area she will take a road show there. http://www.cinderellashoes.ie
Dainty Shoes was set up in 1999. All of the shoes are handmade Italian or Spanish. Mail order is available. Shoes will be delivered within the week and there is a straightforward return policy. http://www.womens-small-shoes.com
Small Shoes stock from size 1 to size 3. Small Shoes are based in the UK and delivery takes a few days and they have an easy return policy. There is a currency converter on the site from sterling to euro. http://www.small-shoes.co.uk.