something every girl should know

November 25, 2011

How to accurately measure your insole

teal feet

I have tried several times to buy shoes online.  The results are usually pretty disastrous.  The shoes always turn out to be too large.  I sometimes have equally terrible experiences buying shoes in person.  I know I’m not the only one to have squeezed my foot into a very snug shoe while saying ‘these will stretch, right?’   This moment of delusion is normally followed by weeks of hobbling around the house in thick woolly socks + new shoes –  a seriously great look.

Failed attempts to wear new shoes for the entire duration of my 6 minute walk to and from the train station in the morning are common.  Sometimes my new shoes stretch enough to turn into the best. shoes. ever.  But sometimes not.  Most of the time it’s a pretty nerve racking process.

As yet another pair of favourite shoes are shredded by the pavement and disappear from my life, I’ve decided to up my game a bit.  Last night I purchased a pair of Dieppa Restrepos.  My ultimate dream shoes.  But how disappointing would be for your dream shoes to arrive, but not fit?

Using an accurate insole measurement  is the only way to make sure that a pair of shoes will absolutely fit.  Would you believe that my foot is 22cm, but I wear a 24cm insole?  I wouldn’t have thought this was right, but it turns out your shoes need that much wriggle room.

A shoe manufacturer or a supplier will usually be able to tell you the insole measurements for their shoe sizes.  Often a website will say something like ‘Runs true to size’ and you can use a size chart to work out what size will fit you best.  The super cautious can always email the store and ask for more information.  And you should.  This is hard earned money you are spending on something that is not only beautiful, but functional.  Something you will wear every day.  You want to get it right.

Here’s how to measure your insole

  • Find your favourite, best fitting pair of shoes.
  • Find a soft, flexible tape measure (or, if you don’t have a tape measure, a piece of ribbon or string.)
  • Take the right shoe (your right foot is usually bigger) and push the beginning of the tape measure marked with a ‘0’ way down with your fingers until it the point marked with a ‘0’ is sitting in the middle of the inside bottom of the shoe, as close to the toe as possible.
  • Hold the beginning of the tape there at the point where the inside bottom meets the toe, and walk your fingers along the tape measure pushing it flat against the inside bottom of the shoe.
  • Keep walking the tape up the middle of the shoe the entire length ofthe insole, until it hits the place at the back of the inside bottom of the shoe where it meets the heel.
  • Take note of the number in the corner where the back of the insole and the heel meet.
  • Hold a finger on that number, and (just in case the beginning of the tape measure has slipped up a little as you stretch it out) push the other end of the tape all the way in to the toe and hold it where the bottom inside of the shoe hits the toe. Hold that point with the fingers of your other hand.
  • Pull the tape out of the shoe while still marking both points with your fingers.
  • The distance of length between your fingers is your insole measurement (mine is 25 cm and I’m usually a 7.5/38).
  • Compare this measurement to the insole measurement for the shoes you want to buy.  Dieppa Restrepo size 7s are a 25cm insole and the size 8s are a 26cm insole.

Before checking my insole I would have assumed I was an american size 8, but I’m pretty sure now that I’m actually a size 7.  Follow these steps and your shoes should always come out a perfect fit.  I’m backing the size 7 Dieppa Retrepos.  Only time will tell – but I’m pretty sure I’m going to end up with shoes that fit, rather than shoes that are a size too big.

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2 Responses to “something every girl should know”

  1. Stitchybritt Says:

    This is very useful. I’m trying to do the ‘bought online stretch’ at the moment. Experiencing blisters. Next time, I know what to do!

  2. Natalia Says:

    Very useful. I am importing and selling handmade sandals from Greece and direct my customers to your article every time. Thanks so much :-)


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