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Slim Calf Boots ~ Hello Heels!

Updated on November 17, 2014

The year's best looks with a mid to high heel

Frustrated with the seeming lack of options for legs like mine, I started researching in earnest three years ago and publishing these targeted lists to help women like me. While still not as common as wide-calf boots, narrower styles can be found with a little digging.

A few things to consider as you browse: Leather, suede, or fabric? Yes or no to stretch panels? Will you be wearing these outdoors as well as in, and if the former, do you need a weatherproof version? Do you like the look (and can you handle the walkability) of a stiletto, or is a chunkier heel your friend? Do you want office-appropriate, casual, or middle of the road?

Here, the 20 latest & greatest boots I've discovered with calf circumferences under 14 inches and 2- to 5-inch heels. Enjoy! And please, if you have input, feedback or tips on these or any other styles, do share in the comments section, as others have done (thanks!).

Note: To alter or not to alter...

If you've found your dream leather boot, but it's too wide around the leg, you may be able to find a reputable cobbler (ask around locally!) who can take it in. Expect this to run about $50 to $100, or possibly more if you're in a high-cost area. And keep in mind that while the shaft can often be taken in, the ankle generally can't. So if a baggy ankle is the real problem, this may not be your solution.

(pictured above: the Tsubo Tarian is a great fit & a great deal too ~ info below)

I love the Tarian for versatility (work and play appropriate, with a heel that will give you some serious height). The Trenton? Exhibit A for proving that weatherproof boots can be insanely cute. Great choice for a "younger," hipper looking heeled boot. And Chicboot has arguably the smallest circumference you'll find outside of kids' boots. (And thankfully, they don't make many of those with high heels!)

TSUBO Women's Tarian, Black, 9 M US
TSUBO Women's Tarian, Black, 9 M US

12.75 circumference, 3.25 heel

Stretch panels are a fact of life with most slim calf boots, but sometimes designers manage to incorporate these creatively, so that they look like an intentional design element. This style from Tsubo is a great example.

 
Stuart Weitzman Women's Chicboot Boot, Black, 8 M US
Stuart Weitzman Women's Chicboot Boot, Black, 8 M US

Lists an almost unheard-of 12 inch circumference, plus a 2.5 inch heel. For a slightly chunkier but still elegant heel,

 

~ It's back! the "Middleton Effect" boot ~

Kate Middleton -- Dutchess Katherine, "Princess Kate" or whatever you prefer to call her :) -- is the best thing ever to happen to Aquatalia, it seems, having worn its sleek Rhumba style for numerous royal appearances. At one such event she even played a bit of field hockey in her Rhumbas .... while pregnant! (Props to the little touch of platform sole that lends stability to this dressed-up style.) Not sure I'd recommend that for those of us who aren't as athletically gifted, but I do love how this boot conforms to a leg as slim as Kate's.


Aquatalia Women's Rhumba Boot,Black Stretch Nappa Suede,10 B US
Aquatalia Women's Rhumba Boot,Black Stretch Nappa Suede,10 B US

Bonus: They've brought it back in a few more colors this year. Not sure about the wine, but the plum & taupe are gorgeous. Hard to beat classic black or espresso, though...

 

La Canadienne is a boon to those of us in cold or rainy climes, working in awesome weatherproof leathers and suedes.

The SoleMani boot is a true find, promising a tiny 12-inch calf measurement at size 6 and including a chart listing both calf & ankle measures for every size from 6 to 11. Why can't all brands do that??

SoleMani Women's Ana Slim Calf Boot, Black Leather 8.5
SoleMani Women's Ana Slim Calf Boot, Black Leather 8.5

12" circumference at sz 6, click to see chart for other sizes

3" heel

Part of a complete "slim calf boot collection" :)

 
Robert Clergerie Women's Prisca Boot,Black Suede Strap,38.5 EU/8 B US
Robert Clergerie Women's Prisca Boot,Black Suede Strap,38.5 EU/8 B US

12 inch stretch calf circumference, 2.25 inch heel

 

~ Skinny steals! ~

The super slim Donald Pliner Yazi, with a cute kittenish heel, is on offer right now at a deep discount at the Zappos-owned clearance site 6pm that has become one of my fave-ever shoe sources. This one will likely fit like a legging, so if you don't want to emphasize the slimness of your calf, it might not be the best choice. Proud member of the Skinny Limbs Club? Go for it!

Also deeply discounted (more than half off retail) is Pliner's Benne, in stretch leather with a 3.5" heel. Based on how sexy this one looks on the video, I'd say it's a good pick for date night ;)

These two styles are almost gone, but you may still find your size if you hurry!


Modern Vintage Women's Diana Boot,Black,8.5 M US
Modern Vintage Women's Diana Boot,Black,8.5 M US

Want the -- in Carrie's words from that Sex & the City episode where she had to walk a runway -- teetering "big girl shoes"? Check out the gorgeous Diana.

13.5" around, 3.75' heel

 
Donald J Pliner Women's Nikko-30 Riding Boot,Black Stretch Nappa,7.5 US/7.5 M US
Donald J Pliner Women's Nikko-30 Riding Boot,Black Stretch Nappa,7.5 US/7.5 M US

With a 13.5 inch calf circumference and a 2.5 inch heel, this one gives you less height than the Diana but is just as elongating to the leg, due to its chic pointed toe.

 
Stuart Weitzman Women's Coolboot Boot, Black, 8.5 M US
Stuart Weitzman Women's Coolboot Boot, Black, 8.5 M US

One more pointed-toe option, with a very slim 12-inch circumference and a 3.25" heel. Caveat: The shaft may be too tall for petites.

 

~ poll! how high is too high? ~

What's your ideal heel?

See results

Have you found the perfect pair? Please share!

Comments

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    • verymary profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary 

      5 years ago from Chicago area

      @anonymous: that is wonderful; I hope they fit perfectly! do come back and let us know, ok?

    • profile image

      anonymous 

      5 years ago

      Thank you! My only tall boots narrow enough in the calf to fit me that I have ever owned have finally given out after over a decade. March is not an easy time to find replacements, especially with my chicken legs! I just ordered a pair from Amazon that you have listed. Excited for their arrival.

    • verymary profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary 

      5 years ago from Chicago area

      @anonymous: I share your nervousness about alterations. Better to find something that fits -- or a laceup is a great solution.Enjoy your boots!

    • profile image

      anonymous 

      5 years ago

      @verymary: I just found a great pair. They are lace up. The Frye Julia lace up. I don't even have to make those as tight as they can go.

      I do worry about a cobbler damaging the boot, or the alteration coming out a bit strange. Thanks again for your help/advice.

    • verymary profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary 

      5 years ago from Chicago area

      @anonymous: yes, some cobblers will take boots in, generally for $50-100 -- maybe worth a shot, but there is a definite risk of damage to the boot :( Many European & even Canadian boots will be slimmer; not sure if women are taller in Europe, though .... prob. depends on the country. But maybe European bootmakers don't automatically increase calf circumference for larger shoe sizes, but rather stay in the same range for all sizes. Do report back if you find out!

    • profile image

      anonymous 

      5 years ago

      @verymary: It seems the only thing would be to wear thick socks and jeans and tuck them into the boots, or get custom made boots with thin calves up to my size. Do you know if shoe repair places can take-in the calves of boots?

      I also heard that in Europe they have much slimmer calved boots and tall women, so maybe next time I am there I can try a pair.

    • verymary profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary 

      5 years ago from Chicago area

      @anonymous: Hi Adele - sorry your search is so challenging. Circumferences always go up with shoe size, so many tall slim women have your problem. I own 2 pr of very slim aquatalia boots that fit my 11.9 inch calves, but I wear a sz 8.

    • profile image

      anonymous 

      5 years ago

      I have tried the Aquatalia Rap and the Stuart Weitzman boots. I am 5'11" and weigh 125lbs, and am very athletic. I wear a size 9.5 - 10. Once I get up to my size, these calves are still too large. I have a 12.5" calf. The Aquatalia was 14.5" and the Stuart Weitzman was quite a bit larger (I didn't measure them, but they were at least an inch larger than the Aquatalia boots). I had great hopes for this list, but am disappointed that by small calves, it refers to somewhat thin calves, not really thin calves.

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