Pull-on Boots

Ariat Bille courtesy of 6pm

Ariat Bille courtesy of 6pm

Not all boots are created equally.  Clearly… since my favorites are actually a half size smaller than the shoe size I wear, and are up to 1.5 sizes smaller than some of my boots that I *think* fit just fine.

Now, regular readers and old friends know what’s coming.  My analysis paralysis and I are into boots right now, leather pull-ons in the western and/or harness styles to be precise.   If you’re looking for cute, trendy, fashion boots, this post isn’t going to be too applicable, but if you want something functional in nature that will last for many years… let’s talk.

Laredo Miss Kate courtesy of Amazon

Laredo Miss Kate courtesy of Amazon

It starts with fit.  Here’s a great, brief explanation of how pull-on boots should fit.   I like to try pull-on boots on with a thin, knee-hi sock, no matter what I plan to wear with them once they’re broken in.

And here’s Country Outfitter’s fit guide for the major brands.  Some have a great little synopsis about the company too.  For instance, I now want to try Ariat because the fit model says one could run a marathon in them, and I want to try Nocona because the founder of Justin Boots daughter started THAT company after her father’s death, when Justin moved out of their home town.  You’ll have to go read the fit guide to learn what happened next!

I also think pull-ons HAVE TO BE leather, and the best you can afford.   Other boots – again, especially the fashion sort – can be whatever works for you and your budget, but for pull-on boots, the magic happens as the leather stretches ever so slightly and makes for a custom fit.  That won’t happen with synthetics.

Heel and sole are highly personal.  I like something in the less than 2″ range, but not slick on the bottom.  I don’t want work boot lugs if I can help it, but I don’t want to tiptoe on wet concrete or high-gloss wood floors either.  See above… the right sole will also conform to your foot and be uniquely supportive.

Justin Gypsy Square Toe courtesy of Amazon

Justin Gypsy Square Toe courtesy of Amazon

Toe is another consideration.  I like an almond toe, which is a little pointed but not so much so that your boots are inches beyond your big toe.  I don’t mind a square toe or a rounded toe.

I’ve been in boot meccas and have tried on just about every major brand that has been in business more than a decade or so, and those of you who know I don’t enjoy the traditional shopping experience will be shocked to hear that I think most of you who are new to pull-on boots should go try on as many brands, styles and even a couple of sizes in each.   Given that my weight and shoe size now is about in line with what it was when I did my last big boot sensory overload shopping trip, I’m going to try to avoid some analysis paralysis and sit ‘n shop… and appreciate free return shipping.

What say you?

This entry was posted in Boots.

8 comments on “Pull-on Boots

  1. kathy boyer says:

    Given a choice of Billie, Kate or Justin I’d take Billie out of practicality. My big old calves do not easily fit into boots so a short boot is best. I LOVE the colors of Justin However. I cannot wait to see how this turns out for you! These boots are made for walking…
    (sorrry I had to!)

  2. Blond Duck says:

    I always think Justin’s are a winner. Trust your gut.

  3. Katherine says:

    The Justin Gypsy Square Toe would be my choice, but I love, love, love the little shorty red boots. I think I have to go look at them now!

  4. gmariesews says:

    Oh my – I’m torn. I think they are all fabulous. In was just stalking your happy feet page and there are some real winners there as well. Can’t wait to see what finally makes you click ‘buy’. g

  5. Karen says:

    I don’t wear a lot of boots but my Sarah lives in them and has about 35 pairs; from tall riding boots to western type, both tall and short, square toe and pointy toe. She loves them all but swears by her Ariats for comfort. She says she could keep them on forever.

  6. Nancy says:

    I’ve never been a boot person, but some of my friends swear by them and love the shorter tops. Good luck in your search.

  7. Kathy says:

    I can’t wait to see your choice of boots because clearly you’ll be buying some soon! I think it’s good to think this through because it’s not a cheap purchase and you’ll wear them for many years.

    What did you decide about a purse? Did you put the loved-but-summery-colored one away for something new?

  8. Sue says:

    I love boots, all sorts of boots. I was married in boots and have fabulous memories of favorite boots. But now I have trouble wearing boots with my joint disease. The act of pulling them on is painful. Still I have hopes of someday wearing my boots again.

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