Many companies specialising in the manufacture and distribution of large or outsize shoes are based in the United States. Quite possibly the world’s tallest citizens, Americans have long been producing extra-large shoes for sports and everyday wear. With the dawn of the internet and online shopping, however, selecting and buying a good-quality pair of large shoes outside the United States is no problem at all.
For men’s shoes, the large sizes tend to start at size 8, often going up to sizes as large as 22. Women’s shoes are deemed large from about size 7 onwards, and tend to be manufactured up to approximately size 13.
Since large shoes are such a specialist commodity, the biggest and best known online large-shoe suppliers provide an excellent service. Their catalogues contain an impressive list of different styles and brands, and you will find that the majority of internationally known labels manufacture outsize shoes. Not all styles or brands will make shoes of all sizes – some only go up to size 16 – but the choice is so varied that finding a decent pair in any size should not prove difficult.
That said, the range of options for women’s large shoes is considerably more limited than for men. It is far more rare for women to have extremely large feet, and so many styles will only go up to a size 12 or so. There are also many fewer makes of shoe for women to choose from, but by browsing a number of different online shops you may well find what you are looking for. There is a surprisingly good selection of evening and party shoes online, for instance, as well as sports and casual shoes. If there is a very specific style you are after, or one that is no longer available in conventional stores and online shops, it is worth checking the online auction houses for second-hand bargains.
Some specialist online stores have what is known as a shoe sizer available on their website; this is a double-A4 document that you can print out and measure your feet size against before ordering. This service prevents one of the most frequent pitfalls of online shoe-shopping: ending up with the wrong size.
It is worth noting that many online specialist shoe shops also stock socks, jeans, tops, belts and other accessories in large sizes, so you will be able to purchase all your footwear and extra-tall clothing from the same place.