6ft4 woman with size 11 feet launches range of fashionable shoes

Caroline Stillman has resorted to making her own range of shoes - because she can't find any to fit her size 11 feet.
Caroline Stillman has resorted to making her own range of shoes - because she can't find any to fit her size 11 feet.

A woman who stands at 6ft 4ins tall has launched her own range of fashionable shoes - because she can't find any to fit her massive size 11 FEET.

Leggy blonde Caroline Stillman, 24, has been 6ft tall since primary school and was wearing an adult size eight shoe by the age of 12.

Throughout her teens she was taunted by bullies who called her a "lanky b*tch" and ridiculed her 3ft-long "giraffe legs".

The jibes were made worse by the fact that she couldn't find footwear in her size, so while other girls donned glam heels, she was stuck wearing boys' trainers.

Angry about the lack of options for long-limbed ladies, Caroline took matters into her own hands and enrolled on a design course at London College of Fashion.

She poured hours into drawing up ideas for the pretty pumps, sexy sandals and high heels before turning them into real-life shoes.

This week, she started selling them through her website, Carobella Boutique.

Lofty Caroline, of Rutland, Leics., hopes her shoes will help other large-footed women and girls feel fab and fashionable.

She said: "I needed to launch this range because I couldn't ever find any shoes for myself.

"It's horrible going shopping with big feet. My friends would go into Aldo or wherever else and buy beautiful shoes and it wasn't very nice - I was always a bit jealous.

"I would always think, 'God, I wish I could go and try on a pair of shoes like that and walk home with them.'

"When I was younger, I wore trainers and stuff, guys' trainers, or I would go shopping with my mum where she shopped.

"It's annoying not being able to have nice shoes to wear. It really affects your confidence."

She added: "I'm hoping that these shoes will give people lots of confidence and make them feel better about themselves."

Caroline's height is due to Marfan Syndrome, an inherited chromosomal disorder which can cause heart and eye problems as well as exceptional growth.

Common complications include a leaky and enlarged aortic valve, meaning Caroline is being closely monitored by medics and will one day have to have open heart surgery.

Sufferers also often have extra-long arms and legs, are tall and thin and have long, slender fingers - like the Stillmans.

But though being tall is not unusual in the family - Caroline's mother, Sarah, stands at 6ft tall and her brother Sam, 24, is 6ft 7ins - she hasn't always felt normal.

At secondary school, cruel bullies taunted her relentlessly about her height, calling her a "lanky bitch" and "giraffe legs".

The teasing was so severe that Caroline was forced to move from Uppingham Community College in Rutland, Leics., to Stamford Girls School, Lincs.

Since leaving school, single Caroline said most people have been supportive and she was even approached by a model scout about a job on the catwalk.

Her shoes - glitzy, fashionable flats inspired by top designers like Valentino and Christian Dior - come in sizes eight to 11 and are sold on her website.

They cost around £80 to £90 a pair and have a "luxurious" feel, Caroline said.

The fashionista said she hopes her range - which will grow to include heels in the near future - will one day be stocked at Selfridges and Topshop,

She added: "At the moment there are only a few shops that sell shoes in big sizes.

"I wanted to make more of a luxurious range because I love designer brands.

"I would never be able to pick up a designer brand and get shoes from them so I'm hoping that I'm ale to give people that option.

"I'm also trying a bespoke range so people will be able to request a pair of shoes that they like in a bigger size, or come up with something completely new."

To view Caroline's shoes, visit Carobella Boutique at www.carobellaboutique.co.uk

To find out more about Marfan Syndrome visit www.marfan.org