Model: Hanover Zip Paddock Boot
Category: English Chaps/Boots/Helmets
Purchase: I bought these boots in brown from Amazon for $139.
Likes: These are beautifully constructed and have an elegant and comfortable looking shape that I admired online for some time before persuading myself that I needed some new paddock boots. I ordered them and was delighted by how comfortable they are. There is a lot of room in the toe and ball of the foot area, and they have thin but very soft cushioning that keeps the foot comfortable. They also happen to match perfectly with the Ariat Classic Chaps half-chaps I bought half price on eBay some years ago! When I bought the chaps I had to shorten the elastic under the foot as it was way too long for my previous boots, but I couldn't even get the chaps on over these boots with the shortened elastic, so I had to snip out all my stitching and take them back to the original Ariat-approved length. Perfect. My how elegant and stylish I looked!
Dislikes: And then I got on the horse... My trainer of several months, who has never mentioned my foot position before, suddenly became obsessed with it. She asked me to turn my toe out a tad. Hmm, not easy, since these oh-so-chic boots locked my feet into an elegant classical position that had my toes pointing straight ahead. I guess that might be desirable for some, but I'm studying centered riding and want to be very flexible. She then asked me to put some weight in the ball of my foot (rather than along the outside where it seemed to be resting) and I found that I simply couldn't do it without bracing my foot and ankle. After several lessons with her fussing over my feet, I went back to my far less elegant but much more flexible Blundstone boots. My feet haven't been mentioned since.
Quality: Very nicely made. Good quality zipper and leather. The leather does scratch fairly easily.
Summary: I think that the ankle on these was simply too fitted. I don't have the thinnest ankles, but they're not huge, either. Maybe the boots will stretch in time? They do have elastic on the sides. They are are comfortable to wear for walking as long as I have a longish sock on, so I guess I'll be wearing them for anything except riding from now on.
Usefulness Rating: 2.5 out of 5.
6 reader(s) voted.
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