Wednesday, January 2, 2008
Women With Big Feet.
Posted by Ann Brock
Jodi Grace is riding a trend: Feet are getting bigger. I will agree with that. I can remember when my feet was a size 9 now I can wear a size 10 and some 10.5. I don't know what happen or why my feet move up a size. My daughter is the same thing, she can wear a size 11 when she use to wear a 10 also. I know that the sizing has change because all the large size in the stores are gone 1st. The small sizes are always left for clearance sale. Why don't stores order more larger size from the start with. So I can find my size when I need new shoes.
A New Specialty Shop Offers Large Shoes For Large Feet.
Jodi Grace is not a big woman, only 5 feet 2 with a proportionate size 7 shoe. But like the market she is addressing, she knows people with big feet.
"When a woman has big feet, all her friends and family know it," said Grace, who in October opened Big Foot, a store that caters to women needing large shoes.
Grace's best friend is a size 12 so she has heard the stories for years about how impossible it is to find stylish shoes for big female feet.
Those who don't know women with big feet think the store is a failure waiting to happen, Grace said; those with big-footed friends think it's a gold mine. Solving this latter group's pain is something like a public service, she said.
"I'm amazed at what's selling," she said. "The frumpy ones are doing 10 times better than I thought they would."
Grace had heard from her friend and others that it's hard for big-footed women to find style, so she deliberately downplayed the "old-lady" shoes. She also didn't think tall women would want heels, but they do. She's also waiting for the colorful sandals to start selling because her research told her big-footed women were tired of buying dull men's sandals and slippers.
Grace is playing on a trend: Feet are getting bigger. Humans generally are getting taller, but women's shoes seem to be growing more rapidly. Shoe stocks are changing, too, she said, perhaps because women now feel freer to buy their correct size instead of squeezing into the mainstream product that is on most shelves.
A hundred years ago, the average American woman wore a 3.5 or a 4, Grace said. The Professional Shoe Fitting Manual says that 60 years later, it was a 5.5 or a 6, then 8 or 8.5 during the 1980s. Now, the average women's size is somewhere in the 9s.
The culture certainly has its examples of big-footed women. According to the Web site feetbytheinch.com, tall women celebrities like Geena Davis, Nicole Kidman, Tyra Banks and Uma Thurman all wear size 11s or bigger. But even Meg Ryan or Paris Hilton at 5-8 clock in with 11s, as does 5-6 Kate Winslet. Her average price point is about $70. I love a nice pair of shoes especially dress shoes. Ladies what about your shoe size, has it changed through the years or stayed about the same?