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Q. After hours of searching online, I’ve concluded that nude, neutral, or beige heels only come in heels above 3 inches! I know that works for most ladies who are more daring than I, but I am looking for a pair of nude heels for a wedding I am in this May. I am by far the tallest bridesmaid in the bunch, and I’m hoping not to stand out too much from the rest of the shorties - can you help? Another requirement: the bride has requested that heels do not have anything other color in them.


A. True, most evening shoes are of the sky-high variety, but we found several that are under 3 inches high:

Q. I was wondering about boot height (shaft height, not heel) to body proportions. Should shorter people avoid shorter (mid-calf/ankle) boots? If you are bottom heavy/athletic build, is it better to go with either really short, or really tall boots (eg knee or over-the-knee height)? I have a range of boots that vary in shaft height, and I’ve got thicker legs and find that mid-calf/lower boots make me look shorter/thicker waist down. Is that always the case, or am I just not doing it properly? I tend to wear all these boots with skinny jeans.


A. That is a great question! I’ve touched a little upon choosing the right shaft height for petite women in the past, but here is a more detailed primer on choosing the right boot for your figure. First, a lesson on boot shafts:

Boot shaft: This is the part of the boot that covers your legs.

Shaft height: The height of the shaft is measured from the inside seam of the boot where it meets the sole up to the top of the shaft.

If figure flattery is your primary goal when purchasing a boot, the key is to find a boot that hits just at the top of the fullest part of your calf, leaving a couple of inches between the top of the boot and your knee (depending how tall you are). If your calves are very full, a boot that hits mid-calf will draw attention to the fullest part of your lower leg, while one that hits just at the top of the calf will emphasize the slimmest part of your leg right below your knee. For petite women, a boot shaft that comes right up to your knee will effectively chop your legs in half, making you appear shorter, while a boot that hits an inch or more below your knee will make your legs appear longer.

There are, of course, exceptions to the above rule based on your body shape or boot type (for instance, a petite woman may be able to wear a tall boot shaft if the boot also has high heels, or a woman with full calves may be able to wear a mid-calf boot if she has long legs), but this is a great way to help determine your boot shaft “sweet spot”. To find your sweet spot, measure the length from your instep (the top of the foot, not your arch) to the top of the fullest part of your calf, this will be the shaft height you should aim for.

For ankle boots, a woman with fuller calves, an athletic build, or petite legs should look for low ankle boots that hit below the ankle bone and dip down on the instep for the most flattering look.

Q. I’m headed to London for the Christmas week and will be doing tons of walking. Since I recently hurt my knee, comfortable shoes are really important, but I don’t want to look like a fashion victim in big clunky sneakers. Also I typically wear skinny jeans/pants so they look a bit weird paired with a sneaker, but it will be too cold to wear a maryjane type walking shoe. I’ve been desperately looking for comfy boots that I can sightsee in all day, bonus if they’re weather-proof for rainy London! I have extremely narrow calves so on top of that, so I have a problem finding tall boots that fit. Thank you!!

A. For walking around London with your skinny jeans, I would recommend investing in a chic pair of rubber soled ankle or mid-calf boots to avoid having to worry about fitting a tall boot to your narrow calves. Though comfort is a priority, that’s no reason to sacrifice style. As a personal favorite, I have walked for hours in my Frye Engineer boots, just add a comfy thick sock — and they look great with skinny jeans. And when it comes to comfort and warmth, you can’t beat an Ugg boot, though whether you think they’re stylish is up to you. Finally, I love the look of a rugged fur lined boot like the Sorels below with skinny jeans, even if your winter coat is a bit on the dressier side, it’s a great contrast (and very London!). Plus, I can personally attest to how amazingly comfortable they are.

Below are some options for you to try out for your trip. I purposely selected only boots from Zappos because of its free shipping and return policy. This will allow you to order several pairs of boots at once and wear them around the house as much as possible to select the one that will be most comfortable for a week’s worth of walking. Bonus, they’ll all serve you well for the damp British weather.


Q. I’m looking for some stylish winter boots (I live in MN.). I love the Blondo Leonie boot in Mushroom Suede, but I can’t find them in my size (7 wide) anywhere! Can you suggest something similar? I thought these hit the right mark with stylish and practical.

A. You will be happy to know that we found 7 Wides in your color preference on today (click the image at right). However, here are some more options that are similar in style and equally as practical for snow and rain.

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