Dyeing ensures that you will come as close as possible to matching your dress and those of your bridesmaids. A qualified shoe repair shop with extensive experience in dyeing footwear should be able to match your dress fabric very closely. (Keep in mind that due to differing textures between your dress material and the shoe fabric, an exact color match isn't usually possible.)
Don't be shy when asking a shoe establishment about its experience in dyeing shoes. Also be sure the establishment offers a guarantee on the process in case anything should go awry. You don't want to be stuck with spotty shoes or two very mismatched pairs of feet in your bridal party.
Friends can be a great resource. Ask a bride whose shoes you admired where she bought her footwear and where she had them dyed.
Let's Go Shopping!
Take your bridesmaids shopping with you for shoes. Likewise, have all the pairs you wish to have colored dyed by the same establishment. These measures ensure uniformity in color.
Ask the store whether they will dye the shoes themselves, or whether you need to find a separate shop for the process.
Getting the Dye Job Done
Once you've bought your shoes and have decided on where you will be taking the pairs you'd like colored, there are a few tips to keep in mind.
Allow plenty of time for the procedure. No matter what promises the shop makes, allow at least two weeks. If possible, take the shoes in even earlier than that. Even with guarantees, if you are left with substandard footwear two days before the wedding, there won't be much you can do about it.
Bring a fabric swatch for each color. For example, you may want to have the bridesmaids' shoes dyed in maroon, while yours should match the soft cream color of your dress. Try to bring in a good-sized swatch; three square inches should be plenty.
Let the shop know what type of lighting your wedding location and reception hall will have. Colors look very different depending upon the lighting. An experienced dyer will want to take this into account.
You may want to have your shoes sealed after coloring. Shoes that have been colored but not sealed can run when exposed to moisture. It is important to keep in mind that once the fabric has been sealed, you will not be able to re-dye it.
Choosing Your Colors
In days gone by, it was a no-no to wear shoes that didn't match your dress color exactly. Things are different today. Although most brides tend to wear white shoes and have their bridesmaids match their footwear to their dresses, this isn't an absolute must. Consider slightly lighter or darker colors for the shoes for your wedding party. For instance, maroon shoes with a dark rose bridesmaid's dress can be stunning.
Have fun with your own choices, too. An ultra-modern white strapless dress, for example, will be eye-popping with a pair of gorgeous black pumps. Use your creativity and step out in style!