Shoe shopping is not fun for me. This is because over the years I have developed a pretty impressive set of bunions and most shoes that I want to wear are not made to fit feet like mine.
As a long time sufferer of bunions, but also someone who wants to wear fashionable high heels when the need arises, I’ve developed an impressive ability to rule out most pairs of unsuitable shoes within minutes of walking in to a shop.
A quick glance at a court shoe tells me that the material is going to be too hard and will rub and aggravate my bunions.
I can tell from a mile away that my bony big toe is going to hang right out of the straps on a sandal.
Within seconds I have deduced whether the shoe will be wide enough in the right places to accommodate my funny feet.
Usually this means I can only wear about 1% of the shoes a shop offers and I don’t always like the style of the ones that do fit me. So I generally walk away miserable and empty handed.
To help fellow bunion sufferers out there who struggle with the same problem I’ve put together my personal shoe collection in this blog post to demonstrate how to choose shoes for special occasions such as weddings, parties and nights out.
A cage shoe can often be a winner – the gaps in the shoe upper give extra room as well as disguising the bunions.
I bought these shoes from Dune many years ago and have worn them countless numbers of times. The heel height and shape add to the overall design and make them very comfortable shoes.
If the straps are positioned in such a way on a sandal so that they happen to envelop and support the bunion then a strappy sandal can work.
I haven’t come across many to be honest, this shoe is from a pair I purchased from the supermarket George at Asda around 10 years ago! Although a cheap shoe, the construction is solid, the toe box is fairly wide, the ankle strap gives extra support and the design means I can comfortably wear them even with my bunions.
I bought this second pair recently from Kurt Geiger and although the heel is very high the cross over straps are positioned perfectly to conceal my toe bumps. In fact you can hardly tell I’ve got bunions at all when I wear them.
Wide fitting shoes
Many ladies with bunions will go for wide fit shoes as there is more room in the toe box area for the bunions to fit. However, the issues with straps remains the same.
This pair are from the New Look wide fit range and the cross over strap disguises the bunions really well. What lets them down is that the construction isn’t great and material choice is cheap – as such they probably won’t last long.
This lovely little pair of shoe boots are from the M&S wide fit range and although a little loose around the ankle the wedge and wide toe box make them comfortable enough to wear for a night out.
On the negative side, I’ve found M&S quality a little hit and miss and often their designs leave a lot to be desired for people who actually want to look fashionable!
Shop 'til you drop, unless...
The biggest piece of advice I can give to people who need a fancy pair of shoes for a special occasion is to set aside a good few hours in a large shopping centre and try on as many pairs as you can. It’s exhausting and often disheartening, you may end up walking away with nothing as I often to – but this is a good solution to ensure you can find a pair that fit and won’t leave you in agony after half an hour’s wear of your new shoes.
I completely understand the problems of buying bunion friendly footwear and so I've launched a brand new footwear brand for women suffering from bunions. My shoes are comfortable, do a great job of concealing your bunions AND are gorgeously stylish!
I don't have to spend hours in shopping malls anymore, I don't have to worry about what I'm going to wear for a night out, a dinner date with my husband or a friend's wedding. Calla shoes provide all of the incredible occassion shoes I've always been missing, throughout years of suffering with bunions. I hope that I will solve your problem of hunting for a pair of occassion or party shoes too - take a look at my current collection here - www.callashoes.co.uk – I would love your feedback!
I already offer flat shoes (ballet pumps), block heels, kitten heels and high heels for bunion sufferers. The range is constantly expanding and I am positive that you will find something for yourself. Let me introduce you to shoes that your feet will love - browse the range at www.callashoes.co.uk and let me know what you think!