I knew it was coming one day. I’d have to capitulate and buy winter boots. For the first time in decades. And so I did, back in early November. They’ve been sitting in their box, “seasoning”, as my mum says, until I was ready to wear them. And the time has come, my friends. For warm boots. And for a discussion about boots. Whether I’m ready or not.
But before we get into that discussion let me introduce you to my new winter boots. They’re from Ugg. A brand I never thought I’d ever wear, given the ubiquitous, suede, squashy Ugg boots on the feet of every teenage girl, or so it seemed, back when I was still teaching. I used to look at their boots and, I kid you not, I’d think, “Ugh. Not Ugg.” But time changes, as do brands. I still hate the original Ugg boots. They look too much like cartoon feet for me. But these, these boots are just what I need. And I love them.
I should back up a bit and explain my earlier remark about not buying winter boots for decades. One would expect that, living in Canada, I must own winter boots. Especially since it’s so cold and snowy here. And especially since I love boots so much.
My relationship with boots has not always been a convivial one. I wrote a post about boots and my thoughts about boots a while ago. You can read it here if you’re interested. In this post I wax nostalgic over boots. The dreaded galoshes we wore as kids with the sad little fringe of fur at the top. How we wore plastic bread bags in our boots when they leaked. And the move into fashion winter boots when I was a bit older. Fashionable winter boots that looked smashing on other girls with their sturdy legs and their mini-skirts. But not on me.
As a tall gangling adolescent, with sticks for legs, I sighed and moaned about the fact that other girls could find knee-high boots that fit their legs snugly, and looked cool with mini-skirts. Me, I didn’t even have to unzip mine to take them on and off. My long skinny foot and leg just slid right in and out. Sometimes even when I was trying to keep them on. Ha. I’ll never forget writing in my journal in grade nine, that, after weeks of training for the basketball team, my legs were “getting fatter!” I could tell because they filled out more of my winter boot. Gad. I’m not sure how my mother endured all the drama.
I bought my own boots for the first time the year I was in grade ten. With money earned by working for my aunt Phyl at the canteen in the Beaverbrook Rink. They were the first pair of boots that I loved. Tall, lace-up, brown leather granny boots, that I could cinch tightly to fit my legs. They were cool, so cool. But they were not winter boots. I froze my proverbial off waiting for the school bus all winter, but I didn’t care. I chose fashion over warmth.
Since that time, I’ve always bought boots to look good and to go with my outfits, snow and slush be damned. I still remember the burgundy leather, knee-high boots I ruined the winter I worked in pharmaceutical sales and had to wade snow and salty slush in parking lots every day in my beautiful boots. But they looked cracking with my long taupe winter coat. Since ankle boots came into style in the nineties, I’ve usually owned black and brown tall boots, and black and brown ankle boots. Always leather or suede boots, never proper winter boots.
Hubby once said he thought the number of pairs of boots I owned was excessive. Why did anyone need more than one pair of boots? D’uh. I couldn’t be expected to wear black ankle boots with a brown pantsuit. Sheesh. What seemed excessive to me was investing in a pair of winter boots that would look terrible with my outfit and which I’d take off as soon as I arrived at work.
Maybe I should explain that I usually wore my boots all day because they were always part of whatever outfit I was wearing. I love the look of a knee-high leather boot with a midi-skirt. Or how a brown ankle-boot looks so lovely disappearing up into the leg of a brown dress pant. And the warm winter boots I saw in stores just could not compete. Besides, I didn’t really need them. For those days when I wasn’t wearing my good clothes, I owned rubber fishing boots, sturdy hiking boots, and warm ski boots, and they were sufficient to my needs.
Now besides my fishing, skiing, and hiking boots, I own several pairs of leather ankle boots that I wear all winter with my jeans. From house to car, and car to shopping mall or restaurant. And a tall pair of suede and leather boots, bought years ago, which I wear on the occasional day when I need to tuck in my jeans and wade snow. But they’re not really warm. They’re a house to car, and car to restaurant kind of boot too.
Not since I was a kid have I needed a dedicated warm winter boot for romping in the snow. Until now, that is.
Since I retired and no longer spend most of my winter days inside a school. And my winter wardrobe is trés casual, and not professional-wear. Since my old sturdy hiking boots bit the dust, and I discovered that my new light hiking boots, which are wonderfully supportive and great for travel, are not so great for walking in the winter. Now that Hubby and I are walking later and later in the season when there’s some snow, but not enough to ski. And since I’m even more determined to be outside for my exercise as much as possible… I’ve decided that I need a pair of warm, comfortable boots to walk in the snow. And maybe even romp if the spirit moves me.
If those boots also look great with my Massimo Dutti khaki skinny jeans, an old cream wool sweater from Gap, and my ancient Adrienne Vittadini camel jacket. And the lovely new cream and grey scarf I bought when I was supposed to be shopping for Christmas gifts. Well, all the better. I’m kind of excited to pair my new boots with my black jeans and my cream down jacket. Or with my dressy Max Mara alpaca coat and jeans. I’m even excited for winter weather.
You know, I would never have picked these boots off the shelf if the young sales assistant at Brown’s Shoes hadn’t suggested them. I’m so glad she did. They are just the ticket. Kind of funky looking. Kind of old-fashioned looking. Not too girly, or old lady-like. Not galoshes by any means. Ha. They’re waterproof leather, suede from just above the ankle to the tops, and the tops can be worn turned down with the fur showing or not. They have soft, warm, furry lining, with a furry innersole. Soft enough to go barefoot in them, so says the salesgirl. Ha. Mine are caramel and black, but they also come in several colours. As well as a taller version. I’ve linked them below.
So I will be all set for winter walking. And for braving the elements to run errands on those days when I might possibly ruin my good Stuart Weitzman black ankle boots or my suede over-the-knee boots in the slush and salt of a Canadian winter.
Here’s a selection of Ugg Adirondack boots. I also liked the grey ones. But I demurred on the pure white boots, with white fur. I laughed out loud when the salesgirl showed me those. They looked a little too much like the white furry boots I wore when I was a toddler. The ones that matched my white faux-fur snowsuit. I know I’m regressing in many ways, my friends, but wearing those would be a step too far. Ha.
So that’s all I have to say about boots today, folks. I hope you’re ready for winter or for whatever kind of season is coming your way: snow, rain, or even extreme heat if you live downunder. What is your footwear of choice for the next couple of months? Besides slippers that is. Ha.
P.S. I sure hope that you are still planning to join us for our imaginary Paris getaway. I’ve received a couple of photos already. Thanks Dottoressa and Wendy in York. Maybe some of you took a photo of your Thanksgiving Day outfit, if you celebrated Thanksgiving? Don’t forget that you don’t have to send your dressy dinner outfit. Comfy travel clothes, sitting and yakking with the other ladies outfits, shopping outfits… whatever you can manage. We just want to see your smiling face on the post. I will be writing our Paris post this week for publication on Saturday. So if I have the photos by Thursday, Dec. 3, that would be wonderful. You can send them to me here.
P.P.S. The links to boots in this post are affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking my link, I will earn a commission.
Joining Catherine over at Not Dressed as Lamb for her #IWillWearWhatILike link-up.