A Groom’s Guide to Wedding Shoes

A Groom's Guide to Wedding Shoes

Finding the perfect footwear for your wedding day can be a difficult feat. With what feels like a million other decisions that need to be made, it’s easy to continue pushing the task to the bottom of your list.
Or maybe it seemed like something that could be decided in a snap, but now that it’s time to make a choice, you realize it’s not so simple. In any case, finding comfortable shoes for men for your big day is a process that shouldn’t be overlooked, and Vionic is here to help.

Groom Wedding Shoes: What to Consider

Other than what your betrothed is wearing, there are a handful of things to consider when choosing your shoes. While theme and formality will come into play, one of the most important factors is your suit style. Additionally, an indoor event versus an outdoor wedding can give you some shoes as to what footwear is best.
Lastly, you’ll need to ask yourself, Am I willing to give up comfort for style? If you know where to look, you don’t have to choose one or the other. In our guide to groom wedding shoes, we’ll break down each consideration and help you find the perfect pair for your wedding day.

Suit Style

Finding the best wedding shoes for your big day begins with your suit style. If you’re going with a black tux with a satin peak lapel, then whole-cut or wingtip oxfords or cap-toe derby shoes are probably your best bet.
Tweed suits go wonderfully with a brogue derby. Want to have a little fun? Opt for a pair of monk-style brogues. And if you’re rocking suit separates, go with a suede brogue or a tasseled loafer.
With a laid-back linen wedding suit, your shoe choices are virtually endless. You can wear tasseled or tied loafers, casual brogues, derby shoes, or a lace-up dress shoe to complement the relaxed yet sophisticated appeal of linen.

Suit Color

You also want to keep in mind the color of your suit. Black suits bode well with black leather shoes or potentially a camel-colored pair, depending on the style.
A beige suit will look dapper with tan or dark brown suede or leather shoes. When choosing footwear for suit separates, a good rule of thumb is to match the jacket shade with the shoe—the darker the jacket, the darker you can go with your shoes.

Wedding Formality

The formality of your wedding can also help you determine what shoes to wear. A black-tie wedding may call for a shiny black whole-cut leather oxford, whereas a slightly less formal affair may allow for a leather chukka boot, derby, brogue, or oxford.¹ You can pull out these same shoe styles for a cocktail-attire wedding, though we recommend lighter colors.
Semi-formal and casual weddings allow for more flexibility when it comes to groom formal shoes. You can choose between tassel loafers, suede derby shoes, brogues, or chukka boots.² Now, if you’re having an oceanside ceremony, then sand is a factor to take into consideration with your beach wedding attire. In that case, you might consider casual loafers or even leather toe-post sandals. Check out our selection for the best mens sandals!

Can You Wear Sneakers to a Wedding?

Many people wonder if sneakers are appropriate footwear for weddings. When you’re the one getting married, it’s really up to you to decide. That said, with more casual events where wedding guests are wearing shorts or sundresses, a clean pair of lace-ups can definitely work.

Wedding Theme

Wedding themes can be anything from romantic, rustic, or tropical to glam, holiday, or boho—the options are truly endless. So, how do you make sure you’re selecting the right shoe for the right theme? Consider the color palette and go from there.
A romantic or glam-themed wedding might embrace bold jewel tones, like red, purple, or emerald, in which case black shoes, shiny shoes are a safe bet. Whereas a rustic event may lean more toward earth tones, tan or brown footwear will complement the theme. Moodier color schemes with black, gray, or maroon will generally call for darker-colored footwear.
Check out our men’s dress shoe guide for more insight on the various styles.

Season

Peak wedding season usually falls in the spring and summer, depending on where you live—or in the case of destination weddings, where you’re tying the knot. However, as you know, you can get married any time of year.
For spring weddings, lighter-colored shoes are generally a safe bet, like tan, white, pale brown. Summertime will welcome bright, warm, and muted hues, giving you more room to play when it comes to choosing a shoe. You can go with a camel, brown, dark blue, or even black. Loafers and suede shoes are great for spring and summer, as they’re a classic style, but not too stiff.
Fall and winter weddings offer flexibility in terms of color and style as well. With a winter rustic or romantic fall wedding or a winter wonderland theme, you can rock virtually any light or dark shade. We suggest brogues, derby shoes, or oxfords.

Indoor/Outdoor Wedding

Indoor and outdoor weddings both have their advantages. With indoor events, you don’t have to worry about things like the weather or what types of decorations you can use. Outdoor nuptials, on the other hand, offer more space for guests, not to mention flattering natural lighting. They each have benefits pertaining to your wardrobe too.
Indoor weddings give you the freedom to play around with different colors and styles. Black, tan, brown, or white leather dress boots, such as chukkas, or dress shoes like oxfords or brogues pair well with most indoor aesthetics.
When it comes to outdoor weddings, you’ll have some flexibility, though you’ll want to find something appropriate for the weather and terrain. Summer outdoor weddings are a perfect opportunity to wear sandals or loafers. With a spring outdoor wedding, we suggest a suede shoe in a light color, such as blue or tan.³

Comfort

If you think you have to sacrifice comfort for style with your groom shoes, we’re pleased to tell you this is a false choice. The reason? There are plenty of comfortable wedding-appropriate shoes for year-round events with virtually any theme or color scheme.
You absolutely must consider comfort for your big day—after all, you’ll be on your feet for several hours. From running around tending to last-minute tasks to taking pre-ceremony photos to walking down the aisle, there’s a lot that goes on even before you say “I do.”
And once you’re pronounced married, you’ll dive with more photos, socializing with guests, dancing, and celebrating. Needless to say, a comfy pair of kicks will make the experience that much more enjoyable.

Where to Find the Best Wedding Shoes for Grooms

Why choose between comfort and style when you can have both? When picking out a groom’s shoe, you can walk pain-free while looking totally dapper with the confidence of a newly married man.
With Vionic’s marriage shoes, grooms can have the best of both worlds. While we recommend wearing your shoes for a few hours around your home before the big day, you won’t have to worry about pain, discomfort, or blisters distracting you during your wedding.
When you browse our selection of men’s footwear, you’ll find the best mens business casual shoes and a broad range of groom shoes to complement any suite-style, wedding theme, or destination location. From leather lace-ups and oxfords to loafers, derbies, and fresh sneakers, we have it all. Not only that, but each pair has built-in orthotics, offering crave-worthy arch support and stability.

External sources:

  1. “Groom Style Guide – What Shoes To Wear?”. Country House Wedding Venues. https://www.wedding-venues.co.uk/wedding-ideas/2018/groom-style-guide-%E2%80%93-what-shoes-to-wear
  2. Hillary Hoffower. “20 Casual Grooms From Real Weddings”. Brides. Updated Jan 14, 2021, https://www.brides.com/casual-groom-attire-5077243
  3. “Indoor vs. Outdoor weddings”. Entwined Events. May 23, 2017, https://www.entwinedevents.com/2017/05/23/indoor-wedding-vs-outdoor-wedding/
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