The Weird Thing Queen Elizabeth Does With Her Shoes

We all know the pain of buying a pair of shoes that look great and seem to fit like a glove, only to find that glove turn into an instrument of torture — at least for the first few days. All of us, that is, except Queen Elizabeth II

In a new book, The Other Side of the Coin: The Queen, the Dresser and the Wardrobe, Her Majesty's dressmaker and close confidante Angela Kelly reveals she and the queen are the same shoe size — so Kelly often wears the monarch's new kicks to break them in before any engagement. "As has been reported a lot in the press, a flunky wears in Her Majesty's shoes to ensure that they are comfortable and that she is always good to go. And yes, I am that flunky. The Queen has very little time to herself and not time to wear in her own shoes, and as we share the same shoe size it makes the most sense this way," Kelly writes (via 

Why the Queen needs her shoes to be comfy

Talk of the queen's unique way of breaking in her shoes first surfaced in 2017, when Stewart Parvin, who designed Queen Elizabeth II's wardrobe for 11 years, revealed there was one person in Buckingham Palace whose job it was to stomp around in the new shoes until they softened out. Parvin tells the Evening Standard, "The shoes have to be immediately comfortable... she does get someone to wear them. The Queen can never say 'I'm uncomfortable, I can't walk anymore. She has the right to have someone wear them in."

So while we can be certain each pair is broken in before they are worn, we don't know how long that breaking in period takes, or whether there have been any misjudgments in the past with shoes that haven't been broken in to the queen's liking. Another burning question: Does Princess Charlotte get to break in her mummy's new shoes by playing dress up in them before Kate Middleton heads out for a long walkabout?