Chrystal Erasmus creates masterpieces for brides to wear on their weddings. We spoke to her about her legendary bridal footwear range, Imaani.
What inspired you to start your collection?
I have always sourced wedding shoes for brides on a smaller scale, as the struggle was real for brides to find beautiful, stylish and comfortable wedding shoes. When my nephew popped the question to his sweetheart, I decided to build a proper range of wedding shoes to choose from, comfortable enough to dance in. The Imaani Bridal collection is pure bridal, but the shoes can be worn again for special occasions.
Describe your collection
Our range consists of white, beige, nude, rose gold and silver shades and every shoe is embellished with crystals or elegant trims. It’s a known fact that brides used to struggle to find wedding shoes locally. There are very few shoes on the market that are beautiful and comfortable, and this is of paramount importance when choosing a pair for your wedding.
Imaani offers well-made, beautiful and comfortable shoes that are also reasonably priced. Wedding shoes are made in very clean factories where the operators wear gloves when they handle the delicate bridal fabrics. The Imaani shoes are also embellished by hand, so they are generally more expensive than the average bulk manufactured shoe that you would find in retail. However, when you compare our prices to other bridal companies, you’ll see that Imaani offers fantastic value for money.
What sets Imaani apart from other brands?
Our collection of bridal shoes feature exquisite details and materials. Imaani shoes all have built in comfort features too, such as padded insoles, non-slip outsoles, adjustable ankle straps and a generous wide fit. These shoes were all styled around a ballroom dancer, because we want the bride to be able to enjoy her wedding from start to finish and to dance with her groom, family and friends – it is a bridal feast after all.
Our shoes are also well made and strong and can be cleaned up after you’ve danced the night away by using soap, water and a sponge, to look perfect enough for a date night for years to come.
List some of Imaani’s best sellers.
We do make recommendations, but the bride-to-be will often disregard what you tell her and go for whatever their inner princess chooses. Our bow shoe style Zuri is very popular, but no more than Lulu that appeals to the Vintage bride, or Ashanti and Eshe that appeal to the modern brides. Every shoe sells well as we built the range to appeal to every type of stylish bride that we’ve ever encountered.
What is a unique selling point of a pair of Imaani shoes?
It’s important to me that these shoes are worn again. For this reason, each pair comes with a unique repair kit that is completely bespoke and features a heel and extra trims unique to that shoe. Most brides would like to wear the shoes again or to keep it for their daughter one day, or their bridesmaids or sister. With the repair kit, they can have the new heels put on and retrim their shoes or wear them again.
How would you describe your wedding shoe collection?
Our shoes are all beautiful. Each style covers the important part of your feet, but they also bare enough skin. We also use see-through panels and French lace and those shoes I refer to as Intimate wear for your feet’. The designs are also timeless, so that the shoes can be worn again 20 years later and still look as beautiful.