What to wear to a wedding when you don’t want to wear heels

So you’re going to a wedding this summer but you can’t face wearing heels? Don’t worry! En Brogue is here to help. I’ve written about this a few times before, but I had a request this week for an update, because let’s face it, there’s going to be loads more flat shoes on offer now than there were last summer. If you’re still worried about ditching your heels for a posh do, I hope I can persuade you to switch to flats because you’ll have a MUCH better time. Tricky staircase to manoeuvre? No problem. Cobbled street to get to the venue? Bring it on. Amazing band playing you want to dance all night to? Just try and stop me!

This image (top) was me at my brother’s wedding a few years ago. I went about as unconventional as it gets – well, I didn’t wear jeans and a T-shirt, but you get the drift. No dress AND no heels. And I can tell you this: I had the BEST time on the dance floor. I even stole an older gentleman’s orange braces to complete my outfit and use as a dance prop…(although only my close friends are allowed to see that image!)

Anyway, I digress – what about you? Here are a few tricks that might help in your transition.

The oldest flat shoe trick in the book

Charles and Keith bow flats

Charles & Keith gold embellished flats, £69 (charleskeith.com)

If you still want to look feminine and have a similar effect to a pair of heeled courts, try a pointed toe flat. I’ve said it many times, but there’s something about that pointed or almond-shaped toe that mimics the feeling you get from a pair of heels, and it also helps to lengthen your legs. Plus, if you find a shoe with a low cut vamp (that just means it shows more of your foot, and preferably some toe cleavage) you’ll give your legs even more of a helping hand. This summer there are more of the softer, rounded toe shapes around, but if it’s slightly elongated (rather than like a traditional ballet shoe) it will have the same effect. These are the perfect shoes to wear with a shift or fitted dress.

Sam Edelman ‘Brandie’ point toe flats, £100 (net-a-porter.com); COS beige leather ballerinas, £89 (cosstores.com); Massimo Dutti pointed red leather flats, £69.95 (massimodutti.com); Zara pink ballerinas, £29.99 (zara.com)

Fancy some fancy flats?

Dondoks ruddle flats

Dondoks ‘Frida’ ruffle pumps, £262.68 (dondoks.com)

How about a bit of embellishment? I know some women feel they need to compensate for the lack of heels by wearing really snazzy flats and although I don’t agree that you have to do this, there are some lovely shoes in the style that work really well for a wedding. If sparkles aren’t your thing, look for snake-effect leather, or another feature like ribbons and ruffles, which are everywhere at the moment.

Anthropologie embroidered ‘Dorsay’ flats, £118 (anthropologie.com); Free People broderie Anglaise ‘Eyelet Sienna’ mules, £68 (freepeople.com); Jigsaw ‘Muhra’ raffia pom pom mules, £98 (jigsaw-online.com); Mango snake finish flats, £19.99 (mango.com)


White isn’t just for the bride

Miista white leather flats

Miista ‘Aline’ leather flats, £210 (miista.com)

I also think white shoes are an absolute winner, particularly if you’re going for something more masculine. I felt great in my monks from Northern Cobbler (sadly they’re not available anymore). This is a good option for anyone wearing trousers, though I would advise picking something cropped or rolling up the hems so you show your ankles. It’s MUCH more flattering. Metallic menswear-inspired styles also work really well as they’re snazzier than your average brogue!

Finery London ‘Elma’ white loafers, £119 (finerylondon.com); Grenson ‘Rose’ brogues, £230 (grenson.com); J Crew metallic penny loafers, £148 (jcrew.com); Rogue Matilda ‘Lovers Gold’ shoes, £175 (roguematilda.com)


I hope that helps any of you looking for wedding guest shoes (or brides-to-be come to that – because why shouldn’t the bride wear flats too?). The best thing of all is that you can invest in a pair of shoes you’re likely to wear again; all of these would looking brilliant just with a simple white shirt and jeans. As usual I’d love to hear what you think. Have you worn flats to a wedding? Do you find it a scary prospect? Would you go as far as trainers?! Leave comments below.

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