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    Q:Wide Calf Boot Tips… How to zipper or stretch boots over wide calves

    I just bought this great pair of knee high wide calf

    boots, but I can’t get the zipper to close over my calves. Is there any way to stretch them?

    Someone said Star Jones talked about a boot stretching device on The View. Please help I love these boots! (Marietta, GA)


    First question- why did you buy a pair of boots that you cannot zip? Were they super cheap?

    A bargain is only a bargain when the perceived deal is useful. I can identify with buying boots that are a tad snug in the fever of a shopping frenzy, but not being able to zip them – that’s nuts! Too tight boots are not only uncomfortable but they also look horrible when an overflow of excess flesh floods over the top of the boot.

    These days, there are so many gorgeous boots around that surely you can find a brand that is more suited to properly fit your leg. And, there is no shortage of fashion conscious wide-calf boots in trendy styles.

    A simple at-home trick when boots become a little snug is to wear a pair of heavy socks under the boots (use footless socks if you don’t want to stretch the shoe portion). Squeeze some liquid shoe stretch on the inside of the boot. Wear the boots around the house and they should loosen up nicely. Placing a plastic bag over your foot will help glide your foot into the boot with added ease.

    When it comes to stretching a boot any more than a smidgen, it is best to consult an expert. Ron Georges of Georges Shoe Store is celebrating its 100th year of repairing shoes and boots at the family owned business in Arden Hills, MN. The repair shop’s web site lists every conceivable professional shoe and boot stretching device imaginable- from Boot Toe Stretchers to Calf Expanders/Instep Stretchers.

    When it comes to stretching shoes or boots, Georges notes three ways:

    1) Dry stretch with a professional shoe or boot stretcher.
    2) Shoe Stretching Fluid with or without mechanical shoe stretchers (stretching spray may spot light color leather).
    3) Heat activated machines found in professional shoe repairs.

    Georges cautions that every leather stretches differently, however if you can’t fit your leg into the boot to get the zipper up, it probably is too snug to stretch without tearing the boot. Just as you can tailor a boot to make it slimmer, you can also widen the calf of the boot by custom fitting the top with some elastic, although it is probably easier to find a manufacturer who designs boots that fit your calves in a more forgiving fashion.

    Good luck, but next time, please buy a wider calf boot with enough give in it to both look and feel fantastic.

    Shop These Stylish Wide Calf Boots:

    –November 3, 2005


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