The perfect shoes for a 1940s style wedding

Rachel Simpson

Posted on July 18 2021

The perfect shoes for a 1940s style wedding


In the third of our vintage wedding style series we're taking a trip back to the 1940s. Perhaps not quite as well known as the ever popular twenties and thirties, the forties has an equally distinctive look which works just as beautifully for a wedding today as it did back then.

Broadly speaking the forties can be split into two periods- the early/ mid forties which was of course wartime into post war, and the late forties when things began to become a little more prosperous. When Christian Dior's launched the iconic New Look in 1947, it made way for the fuller silhouette of the 1950s.

Typically silhouettes were pretty slim as fabric was rationed- some brides even made their dresses out of furnishing fabrics which could be easier to get hold of! 1940s wedding dresses therefore tended to be fairly modest in design, with emphasis on beautiful, demure details such as the Peter Pan collar, a cinched waist and tea dress style buttons.

We had a lot of fun styling up the following three looks, with our choice of shoes perfect for a forties style wedding.

Classic Forties title

Our first 1940s look focuses around a beautiful tea dress style wedding gown, with sheer overlay and adorable Peter Pan collar. This dress would be perfect for a City Hall wedding or Civil Ceremony with it's slim silhouette. We love a three quarter length gown (not least because it show off your shoes!), and we've teamed this little beauty with our classic forties inspired Clementine points. 

Super chic, Clementine are as comfy as they are stylish on a wearable low heel, with a gold ankle strap to keep you feeling secure all day. The vintage scalloped detail is highlighted with delicate gold binding and the soft V shape is really flattering on the foot. Complete your look with a birdcage veil- popular in the 1940s- and our super cute Freya clutch.

Shoes for a classic forties style wedding

Dress | Birdcage Veil | Powder Compact | Shoes | Bag

Floral forties title

Our second look is a little fuller than the first, but still relatively modest by today's standards. Brocade was a popular fabric of the time, and although this original vintage dress has a lace bodice, it is reminiscent of this fabric with it's large floral pattern. An elegant belt cinches the waist to create a classic forties silhouette, with flattering three quarter sleeves.

Although in general pointed shoes are more typical of the forties, we've paired our second gown with our Rosita almond toe shoes. With a suitably modest low heel, the appliquéd gold detail and intertwined t-bar give a romantic edge to the shoe, and compliment the a soft, floral dress beautifully.

Accessories play a key role in this look, and we've chosen a stunning vintage inspired headdress from Debbie Carlisle. All that's left is an understated bouquet and voila!

1940s inspired wedding style

Dress | Headpiece | Shoes | Bouquet

Modern forties title

Our third and final look is a little more of a modern take on 1940s wedding style. It's a forties inspired dress (as opposed to being original vintage) but with detailing which would be at home at that time. We love how the design manages to be both understated and make a striking statement at the same time. 

Have fun with your accessories with this look, like the oversized Jennifer Behr bow headband we've chosen here- this look is all about clean, bold lines. Strictly speaking, our Isadora shoe is a little more twenties than forties, but we couldn't resist them to finish this look perfectly! The rich, berry suede is uber stylish and works really well to take you from a day into an evening look. Complete with matching Iona clutch and a rich yet natural lip. 

Modern 1940s wedding style inspiration

Dress | Bow Headband | Lipstick | Shoes | Bag

Click here for more vintage inspired wedding shoes, and don't forget to check out our blog for features on 1920s and 1930s style.

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