Lookie! The New York Times’ “T Magazine” has advice for those of the Fatted Calf:
Question: I’m looking for women’s boots that can fit my calves. A lot of tall boots are too narrow for me. Help!
Answered by: Karla M. Martinez, women’s fashion market director
Your problem is something that I have heard so many ladies complain about — it is a real issue, and I wish more shoe companies were sensitive to it. One common solution is buying boots with a stretchy panel sewn into the upper. But that isn’t always the most attractive style, and sometimes the elastic does not provide enough stretch to fit. A great solution I’ve found is J.Crew’s boots, which are made for different calf sizes. I love the Sinclair boot in espresso brown. Equestrian boots also tend to have wider widths and always look so chic with dresses, pants or skirts. You have good options available at A.P.C. . . . and Madewell. The best riding boots are made by Ralph Lauren and Church’s, which told me its uppers are roomier than average. When Spring shipments arrive in stores in February and March, Ralph Lauren will have an abundance of riding boots, which certainly have room for bigger calves.
I called Florinka Pesenti, who works for Tod’s, the luxury shoe company. She suggested the option of having your boots stretched. Shoe Service Plus (212-262-4823), which has many fashionable customers, can stretch boots as much as two inches at the calf. Erich Lutz, the manager at the Christian Louboutin boutique on the Upper East Side, also suggested the stretching at Shoe Service Plus, where the procedure costs about $30. I also recommend Top Service, a small shop at 845 Seventh Avenue (212-765-3190) — there, a stretch costs about $10. If money is no object in your quest, Manolo Blahnik can custom make its signature boots to perfectly fit your calves.
One final bit of advice: Judging by the pre-fall shows I saw a few weeks ago, fantastic slouchy boots that fall slightly below the calf are on their way back. Arrivederci calf-squeezing boots! My favorite designs of this new style come from Balenciaga and Chloé. Keep your eye out for those in June. And let us know what you end up doing.
Francesca is fascinated to know that one can have one’s boots professionally stretched. If you do not live in New York, a few calls to to the shoe stores may help you find a local place to do this.
However, she is wary of this idea of the “slouchy” boots that “fall slightly below the calf.”
She warns the Big Girls that cutting off one’s leg at that point might make one’s legs look stumpy. Obviously, each girl must try the fashions for herself; much depends on the shape and length of one’s legs, the exact style and height of the boot, and the other clothes one plans to wear with it.
All Francesca is saying is to be careful. (And to give peace a chance.)