MORE's fashion features editor, Susan Swimmer, blogs about the fashion matters that really count.

By: Susan Swimmer
Photograph: Photo by: iStock

December 13, 2010


When I was a senior in college (in upstate New York), I traveled to Los Angeles for a week to look for jobs in the entertainment industry. My roommate at the time joined me, and how it was that we convinced both sets of parents that this was a) a good idea and b) would result in an actual job, was beyond me. But we dumped frequent flyer miles and off we went to conquer the west.  It should come as no surprise that Hollywood big shots had no interest in meeting with us, let alone hiring us, but we did have a few very productive “informational interviews” with some of the most harried assistants in show business.

We also shopped, naturally, and my prize purchase was a pair of black cowboy boots. I had seen a celebrity wearing something similar at some event and I deemed them a must-buy. I promise you I wore them every single day for three years.  Rain or shine. Hot or cold. With jeans, skirts or black pants. I loved them, until the above aforementioned roommate did a fashion intervention and told me I had to move on. Immediately. Because styles change and what once looked cool was starting to look really wrong. Buh-bye my trusty western friends…

This is all a long way of saying that it may be time to reevaluate your boot collection, and have I got an idea for you: Over-the-knee-boots.  Before you bombard me with the I’m-too-old’s, and the I’m-too-short’s, stop and listen. They’re EVERYWHERE this season, in all different varieties (lots of textures and colors, with hardware or not, many different heights, hi heeled or flat), and I have seen with my own two eyes that they can look great on all ages and sizes. I think they work best over leggings or skinny jeans, and my favorites are styles that allow you to wear them up over the knee (edgy), or folded down (traditional). I also love them with shorter skirts (the scroll down: skirt, a few inches of textured tight, boot) if you have the legs for it and also the lifestyle (corporate job? Not so much).  I’m telling you, try on a pair before you judge me a buffoon, and if you are at all in doubt of the strong style statement they make, go for simple, unadorned, black calf skin and enjoy warm, sexy legs all winter long.

Go! Buy! Be Chic!

First Published December 13, 2010

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