Saturday, September 29, 2012

A Good Purchase or Not?

For the past six weeks or so, I've kept my eyes on a pair of combat boots, which suddenly showed up at my favorite resale and vintage clothing shop. In spite of having some reservations about buying them, due to factors that I'm about to explain, I purchased them Friday morning. I'm just thrilled to have them, but the fact of the matter is, they are between two and a half to three sizes too large for me. Why did I buy them? Here's my logic:

For whatever reason, I tend to have problems with almost any shoes that I buy. I walk a lot and before long, I either get friction burns on my feet somewhere or even more frequently, the shoes that fit comfortably when I first put them on grow tighter and tighter until eventually, they seem way too small. 

The boots I just bought, on the other hand, feel very comfortable and provide me with a lot of extra space; there's no way they're going to feel too small for me and may even fit a bit better after I've been walking or standing in them for awhile. A pair of thermal socks over another pair in cold weather might even help them fit more as well as providing a bit of practicality. These should provide me with plenty of traction on slippery landscapes during the winter months and truth be told, I've wanted a pair of boots like this for a long time, even if they do make my feet look bigger than they actually are due to their extra size. Most importantly, they were priced at $20.00; and after discussing their advantages and disadvantages with the store clerk, he sold them to me for $15.00--along with the offer that if they didn't work out for me, I could return them and trade for something else. Finally, I'm really glad to finally have a good pair of boots that can supplement my style.

Here's my question to you the reader: All things considered, do you think I made a good purchase or not? I'd be interested to hear what you think about this.



  1. I think you should make those suckers work no matter what it takes - even if it means three pairs of socks! ;o)

  2. I find it hard to get boots that feel right and that last ! I bought a pair of boots for work (Steel toe caps and digger plates) on the 1st June they had split by August 20th! Next pair still feel heavy after a few hours

  3. I like the boots, but I would be hesitant to buy anything too big. Maybe one size up, but more than that and I would feel like a clown. But, so long as they are comfortable and you're not having problems with them coming off while you're wearing them, I'd keep them. I want to see an outfit post with them now!

  4. I say as long as they work out for you, good buy. Even if they don't work out, you can still return/exchange them. So, yeah, good buy.

    I got the Vegetarian Shoes boots I've been drooling over for two years for $110 less than retail through eBay this year and had the same problem: great boots that are too damn big.

    If you have a hard time getting them to fit because they're still too big, you can try a few tricks I've learned.

    Insoles can help a lot, especially if the shoes are too 'tall' in the section around your foot. Toung pads can also help with fit around your foot and around your ankles.

    Heel pads can help fit a shoe down and can help with blisters or sore spots on your heel.

    Lastly, and for me most effective when I get it to fit right, is stuffing the toe with tissue paper. It can be tricky though, and may take a few tries. I recommend getting 6 sheets of single ply and softly wadding them up into a 'p' sorta shape for the left foot and a 'q' shape for the right and lightly packing them into the toes. DON'T press them in tight with your fingers - that's your toes job. Put the shoes on, lace them up, and walk around for a few minutes to get the tissue to form around your toes. If it feels too tight, pull the paper out, take off two sheets, and try again. You'll know you got it right when your shoes feel really comfy. One of the great things about this is TP is so cheap, I don't feel bad if I have to try several times to get it just right. The draw back is they usually completely loose their shape when you take them out for any reason and can turn into vengeful sodden mush if you step in puddles.

    So far insoles and toe stuffing have worked for me, though the insoles like to peel out with my feet when I take them off, and since I've got so I'm thinking of taping them in with a lightly sticky tape or stuffing with less paper then laying the insoles so they lay between my toes and the paper.

    Please let us know how they work out for you. Sorry about the long post, thought you could use the advice.

  5. Thank you all for your comments and suggestions. By blending some of your ideas with my own I think I can make these boots work for me. I do appreciate Sarah Silence's concern that boots too large might not go over very well. Still, I'm tall, so I think I might be able to get away with it. And per Sarah's request, an outfit photo may follow; after all, a picture will reveal all.

  6. I think if they end up being comfortable and you don't have problems in the future then it was well worth it. Even if problems do arise, at least you made the attempt and went after what you wanted! -Midi

  7. It seems you're one of those whose feet swell at the end of the day, so getting boots a bit big is probably a good buy. Also, if you live in a climate that gets a bit cold, wearing thick socks will also help.

    I did the opposite several years ago; I found a pair of 20 eye Docs at a thrift store that were a size too small, at $35 USD, brand new. I thought I could either stretch them (which I never got around to), or they would eventually stretch on their own, as two other pair I had in the past did (however, I soon noticed the grade of leather was much different). I thought I'd either swap them, or give them away, but nothing ever panned out. I now have a daughter who, if she wants them, can eventually have them. Perhaps if they *don't* work out, you can swap them, as well.

    On a side note, if your feet are swelling at the end of the day, there could be an underlying medical issue causing it (or it can be nothing), so you may want to speak to a doctor.

  8. Actually, my feet don't swell at the end of the day but instead, when I walk a lot. I actually think it has more to do with getting the right shoe fit. When I try them on at the store they seem to fit okay but once I start using them, they hurt my feet. I should probably just start buying all my shoes about a half size larger from now on.

    I wouldn't think of going any smaller.

  9. I have some too-large combat boots (proper ex-army ones) that I wear with three pairs of socks. They are so damn warm, and not uncomfortable at all. But I do end up wearing long socks, regular socks and then fluffy socks to fit them. And good insoles (which also stop some of the cold from the ground getting to my toasty toe).