Sunday, September 15, 2013

Boot Shopping

I love boots!

The fall catalogues have me drooling (not good for my keyboard).

I want them all!!

As much as I love boots, I hate shopping for them. It's a nightmare. Hours later, the only thing I have to show for my time is an attitude and a whole lot of frustration.

My problem is with my feet and calves. Being plus size, I have large calves, so that drops a lot of boots off my list. My boot shopping problem is compounded by the fact I wear a women's size 6 wide. A lot of manufacturers start with a size 7, which is way too big for me.

About two months ago, I told my DH I wanted a new pair of cowboy boots and a belt to control the rolling/sliding waistband problem my jeans have--that's a whole different story. Living in Texas, he took me to a couple of different local western wear stores. The first couple of stores didn't have anything in my size, but said they could order a pair for me. I declined, because I've learned I have to try the things on, otherwise I'm paying return postage to send them back. At one of the stores, the cute sales girl pretty much blew me off and went back to her co-worker to talk. The last store my DH took me too was a western store that had everything from trailers, to tack and saddles, to feed, to everything you could possibly want to wear to work on a farm or got to a rodeo (whether you were participating or just a spectator).

Hey, I said I live in Texas! LOL

Anyway, I started looking through the women's boots, but found nothing that would fit. Even though this was not the first time I've looked for boots, I was disappointed, though not surprised.

I had already decided to give up when a sales lady came up. We talked, and I told her what I was looking for and the problem I was having. She told me, to my surprise, my problem was fairly common, and she had a solution.

She took me to the kids' boot section.

I would never have thought of looking in the kids' boot section. I tried on different pairs, and I found that depending on the style and brand, I can wear a 4 to 5 in kid sizes.

The boots made for kids are replicas of the ones they make for adults, so I had a choice of styles and colors. The only difference is kid sizes are a little cheaper than adult ones and they may be a little shorter than adult boots (but not much).

I found a pair I really liked, but the left boot was too tight across the ball of my foot. My left foot is slightly wider than my right.

The sales lady smiled and said she could fix that too. She left and came back with a spray bottle filled with a mixture of water and rubbing alcohol. She sprayed the top of the boot while I was wearing it, and the leather almost instantly loosened.

Of all the times I've shopped for boots, this is the first sales lady who ever truly helped me and left me with some good tips. I definitely will go back to this store.

Oh, by the way, I've got a pair of leather, knee high boots that are a little tight around the top. The water-rubbing alcohol mixture worked wonders. I even tried the mixture on a pair of leather sneakers that wouldn't loosen up because it hurt to wear them.
Ariat (brand), size 5

Just a word of caution--always test the water-rubbing alcohol mixture on a small section of the leather before you spray it everywhere. You don't want to ruin you leather boots.