It’s pretty safe to say that given my ankle boot collection (currently sitting at about 8 pairs,and this doesn’t include pairs I’ve owned in the past) I am slightly obsessed with them. They’re a great choice of shoe for the transition seasons, and work so well with pretty much every item of clothing.
However, being 5’0″ AND having athletic legs means not all ankle boots are made equal – one pair that look amazing on my more lithe, long-legged gazelle counterparts can make my own legs look stumpier and shorter. So I decided I’d share my thoughts and tips with you on what ankle boots work best for me (and hopefully for my fellow petite readers).
But first, some boot anatomy that I’ll be mentioning in this post.
The shaft is basically the height of the boot from the ankle to the top of the boot. The height of the shaft is very important for us shorties as they can affect how long our legs look.
The toe box is the front of the boot where the toes live. The shape of the toe box can also have an effect on how our legs look while wearing ankle boots.
What I’ll call the boot opening is the circumference of the top of the boot when it’s zipped up.
The dip is present in some styles of boot and is basically where the boot opening “dips” at the front. This might be a curve or a V-shape. Not all boots will have a dip, but they can make a difference for us petites.
And of course, you know the heel.
The first boots I’ll be showing you are my Frye Engineer 8R short boots. I bought these overseas years ago, mainly because I’d seen so many bloggers wearing them and absolutely fell in love. BUT seeing them on other (read: taller) bloggers doesn’t necessarily mean that they’ll suit me. You can see why below.
You can see a few problems with these boots. The main issue is that the shaft of the boot is too high – basically the boot ends at a wide point of my calf. By concealing the slimmer ankle, the boots not only make my legs look wider but also shorter. The wide boot opening, the round toe box and relatively low heel further contribute to the truncation of my legs. So as much as I love these boots (on others), they’re no good for me.
Next are my absolutely favourite boots, these Rag and Bone boots. I bought these from eBay (I wrote about them here) and they have quickly become a regular in my winter wardrobe.
What a difference the shaft makes. There’s basically very minimal shaft on these boots and the boot ends at my ankle, ie the slimmest part of my leg. This slims and lengthens the leg. In addition, the colour of the shoe (grey suede) being similar to my skin tone, the smaller boot opening, the curved dip and the high heel all contribute to make my legs look longer. Unfortunately these boots aren’t available anymore but the Rag and Bone Harrow boots in grey suede are just as good with the same effect.
Next are my newly acquired Acne Pistol boots, also second hand via ebay. I’d been after these for so long, and had been umming and ahhhing about it but decided to go ahead with them after some great advice from Mica of Away From Blue (also an Acne Pistol boots owner).
You’ll see the shaft is higher than the Rag and Bone ones so that it covers my ankle. This isn’t ideal for leg lengthening BUT the boot opening isn’t too wide and the boot essentially follows the shape of my leg, which means that the truncation isn’t as obvious as with the Frye boots. This is also helped with the almond-shaped toe box and the mid-heel height, which lessen the shortening effect. When paired with black opaque tights these boots will give the legs length. (similar, less than $100 | similar, less than $200)
I also recently bought these studded Zara boots via Gumtree because I can’t resist anything studded.
Now the heels on these are fairly flat and the boot opening is wide, but because the boots end at the ankle and the toe box is almond shaped they help give some length to my legs. These look great with a shorter skirt (ie above the knee) or with some skinny cropped jeans – I prefer to show some skin between the hem of the jeans and the boot opening as I find this more flattering and lengthening. This style of boot is a great comfy option for petites who don’t do heeled boots, and are also just pretty damn cool. (similar, less than $200)
Finally these second hand DICO Copenhagen pull on boots, bought from Surry Hills markets.
You can see here that even though the boots end around the ankle, the unstructured wide boot opening, flat heels and round toe do nothing for my legs. They are however incredibly comfy, and with this style of boot I’d probably go with a pair of short distressed denim shorts to help give my legs the illusion of length.
When trying to take outfit photos of my new-to-me Acne Pistols with my Cecilie Copenhagen dress (also new-to-me via eBay), my 18 month old son decided that he just wanted to hang out with his mummy, and no one else would do. #mumlife
Although this probably isn’t an outfit combination I’d do on the regular, I quite like how the boots give the dress a bit of a rock and roll feel. With a denim jacket it would be a great outfit for those cooler months.
Now as for the blogging hiatus… you can kind of get an idea why I haven’t blogged from the photos with my son above… basically life got in the way. I had a heap of work to do, the kids became sick, then I tried potty training (which as been abandoned, for now), then I kind of lost interest in blogging because I just didn’t have time to run out and get Instagram Husband to take photos of me in my outfit during “the golden hour”… anyway I’ll try and give the blog a bit more love but THANK YOU for being so patient! Of course, I post my outfits on Insta regularly so please follow me on Instagram if you don’t already!