Over the knee?

I have recently been imagining smooth, plain knee high boots to wear with skirts just below the knee or midi length. But this is turning out to be impossible to find. I have muscular calves and very short legs, so knee-high boots are too tall, making the top bulge hugely around my leg.

I stopped by Bloomingdale's to try on a pair that seemed promising. No luck, but on my way out, I noticed a whole display of over the knee boots. I realized that they actually fit my short legs better, unintuitively! The boot doesn't bulge out at the top of my calf because it keeps going higher.

I always thought over-the-knee boots were way too much look for me. I know my style can be edgy, but I'm timid about things that read as extreme to me. I was a teen during a phase when OTK boots were not "in" at all, so they seemed fetishy at the time and I think my brain is stuck on that image. Now, of course, we've had years and years of them being on trend, and they seem to be having a tiny resurgence this year.

Soooooo. I fell in love with these Ash boots. They aren't clean and simple like I thought I wanted - they have dramatic zippers, though they're not particularly shiny or glossy. They remind me of some Demeulemeester looks. Sorry that I didn't get any photos.

Would I manage to wear them? I work in a very casual environment where dressing up stands out. I'm afraid I would just never wear them.

(You may remember that I did get really wonderful mid-height boots last year, Tsubo Loe, shown below for comparison. Perfect over jeans and fit like they were made for me. Alas, they have the same diagonal zipper look as the Ash boots so I probably don't need another pair with the same look!)

There's one pair left at Shopbop and if I do want them, I should snap them up now while the discount is still going...

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  • cheryle (Dianthus) replied 3 years ago

    I like them a lot.  They don't look over the top in any way.  Having said that, I posted just a few days ago questioning whether OTK boots were in my comfort zone.  

  • catgirl replied 3 years ago

    I have a very wearable pair of OTK boots - they are flat,which helps, and they have small zips at the bottom so I can get my feet in.  You can definitely wear them but just have to style to avoid fetish looks and stumpifying if those are fears.

  • Greyscale replied 3 years ago

    Oops, Dianthus, I wish I'd seen your post! Sorry to repeat a topic so soon. I got behind on reading while I was traveling, I guess.

  • gryffin replied 3 years ago

    Grayscale - I bought the SW hammer OTK boots at NAS 4 years ago.  I had a pair of black suede heeled OTK from the last 80's that I almost never wore, too "pretty woman,"  but I wear the SW's a lot and I work in a conservative field.  I think the key difference is flat with a less delicate sole (and the one's you've selected have almost a lug sole which gives them a more casual, not sexy, vibe even though they are sleek and edgy with the zips.  Then it comes down to styling.  I keep contrast down either with black tights or leggings.  I add a blazer and I think, according to the feedback I've gotten they read elegant, polished, and modern with a little kick ass thrown in.  I think they look really nice.  But I don't think you'll know how you'll feel until you get them home and style them with your things!!  Good luck!! 

  • unfrumped replied 3 years ago

    I don't know, but I'd love to see you try them. I really like the suggestions to create a kind of classic but casual equestrian vibe (leggings or skinnies and some sort of blazer--nonchalant, not too costume-y; maybe even a long BG cardigan would look great, and also dressed-down) which should keep the boots from looking hoochy or too center-stage.

  • Suz replied 3 years ago

    Oh, I'm so glad you posted this question. My calves are not super muscular (on the slim side) but they are about the height of yours and I have the same fit issues you have with knee highs. It's a nightmare finding them. And I find myself strangely attracted to over the knee boots, too, but wasn't sure how to style or what to do with them or whether they would read as "too much." 

    I really love the ones you posted and feel as if they have potential. What's the Shopbop returns policy? You could try them, style them for us, and then decide? 

  • viva replied 3 years ago

    I think you should try them if they are returnable.

    I actually tried on a pair of OTK boots at Joe Fresh today in NY, and I was seriously tempted even though this look is just nowhere in my style vocabulary. They were very cool (flat grey suede).

    And just because they have that same zipper detail as your others, I wouldn't discount them. The completely different style trumps that, I think!

  • Deb replied 3 years ago

    From what I've seen of your style, I think these would work well. The zippers would add a nice detail to your largely black wardrobe too and the boot shape is quite different from your other boots. They'd be worth a try, providing you have the option to return if they don't make the grade. My only reservation with this style, is they don't really suit petites, otherwise they look good.

  • ironkurtin replied 3 years ago

    I don't think it's a dupe. When a style works, it works, I say go for it.

  • Angie replied 3 years ago

    More thumbs up from me too. 

  • Tanya replied 3 years ago

    I say give it a try, especially if the boots are returnable.  This particular pair is gorgeous.

  • Elizabeth P replied 3 years ago

    I think these would be great for you, and in no way a duplicate of what you have. 

  • Nastia replied 3 years ago

    Oh I like them a lot!

  • thimblelina replied 3 years ago

    Classics! Do it! Only the super highest of heels verge into fetish wear. 2 1/2" or below = perfectly ladylike! Flat is the way I would do them too. And yes, where the boots hit matters A LOT. I could literally take a sharpie and draw hash marks up my calf: here, here, not here, here, not here, or here, here, etc!

  • shedev replied 3 years ago

    I have the same fit issues as you in the calves. I hadn't considered OTKs. The only way to know is to try them.

  • Leah replied 3 years ago

    I think they're great and definitely practical enough for everyday casual wear. I have some similar ones (frye shirley OTK) and wear them all the time! They are super versatile. I live in Boston and see them on stylish women of all ages.

  • rachylou replied 3 years ago

    I'm on the lookout for OTK boots myself, so I say Yah. Plus, those Ash's are nicely plain, if you know what I mean. A lot of OTK boots come off as a little tacky to me... too much blingy fixin's.

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