Boot Basics

boot paint
Wearing my favorite Aquatalia Rhumba boots!

Chilly temperatures, falling leaves, you can’t help but notice that it is officially boot season – so many boots, so little time!!! Really, if you have shopped for boots lately, it can be overwhelming with the myriad of styles to choose from – high boots, low boots, casual boots, edgy boots, dressy boots – endless options that can give your outfit a completely different look. I want ’em all!! Haha….Because I learned from Ginger the value of shoe maintenance, last years boots (and way older) still look very good….some are strictly for casual wear, some are appropriate for both work and play….It makes sense to start with basic styles, then add to your collection over the years with those you lust for! Here are some of my favorites:Aquatalia tall boot By far my #1 favorite, the Aquatalia suede boot, also, by the way, worn by Kate Middleton…..yes, pricey, but worth every penny – they are not only elegant and comfortable, they are warm and WATERPROOF. Bring on the snow, sleet and slush! Yessiree, no need to sacrifice style just because we live in New England….they hug the leg and look great with dresses and skirts…also perfect to dress up leggings or skinny jeans…Sold at Nordstroms and Neiman Marcus, this particular style, Rhumba, is one of their classics…..Want a similar look at half the price?  Try La Canadienne brand, sold at most major department stores.plain black bootie Another must have basic is a plain black bootie….this one is Via Spiga, bought a few years back at Nordstrom’s….the tapered heel and polished leather make it dressier and work appropriate…….the 3″ heel is flattering with skirts – wear with tights for a more conservative look or bare legs for an edgy look…..the clean lines of this bootie also make it a perfect choice with straight leg pants or skinny jeans – ideally with no visible sock!tan suede bootie Hugely popular this year and a very versatile year round boot is a beige suede bootie…..these are by Tommy Hilfiger and I actually wore them through the summer with white skinny jeans…..Nine West currently has a similar version for under $200…..they would also look adorable with a denim skirt and bare legs…for cooler weather, perfect with  leggings or blue jeans,  plaid flannel shirts and chunky sweaters….unless you work in a strictly casual workplace, this western inspired boot likely not for work….Stuart W tall boot Here’s a boot I have had for a few years and wear to work as well as after hours… is Stuart Weitzman, a brand that is always comfortable for my not so skinny feet…..simple and unadorned by any zippers or buckles, the beauty is in the soft cognac leather (needs regular polishing)….this color looks great with any color, and especially adds interest to an all black outfit….on the weekend, it creates a ‘wow’ when you tuck in your jeans and add a western belt….Cordani low boot Another great boot brand to look out for is Cordani….these booties are great casual wear, found a few years back at Cuoio on Newbury Street…because of the chunky heel and wide toe pocket, they are very comfy – a shoe I can do my Saturday errands in!  They also look good with a casual skirt/dress – to look current and not frumpy, just be sure that your skirt does not fall below the knee…flat boot Imagine a boot for weekend wear that is as comfortable as a sneaker: Geox brand, completely flat with a rubber sole….gift from Peter a few years back, he found them at The Tannery in Harvard Square….After a Saturday night in high heels, my feet say thank you!

A few final tips:

  • Buy boots that flatter your height and body type, not just because you love them…I love over the knee boots, but whenever I have tried them on all you see are the boots, not the person wearing them.  Pass.
  • Have fun with patterned tights, especially with booties….or consider a sheer nude stocking with a high boot for the illusion of a bare leg.
  • If you admire southwestern style, cowboy boots are timeless and definitely worth splurging on.
  • Skip the socks – visible socks, that is….unless you are wearing a stylish sock with a low boot, wear a ‘ped’ that does not show – or try none at all.  Athletic socks?? Are you kidding??  🙂

What is your favorite boot?

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  • Love the boots! Do you have any recommendations for lower heeled boots that are dressy enough for a conservative office? I love boots and live in them on weekends, but since we live in Minnesota high-heeled boots aren’t very practical in snow and ice. Low heeled boots like riding boots are probably too casual for my office.

    • Stuart Weitzman makes a riding boot every year that has a two inch block heel. It is polished leather with microfiber panels so it has a dressier look – perfectly acceptable for work – I wore them a lot last year when we had two feet of snow every weekend (did not show them in this post!).


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