How to Stretch Leather Boots

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Dear Budget Fashionista,

I recently purchased my one splurge item, a pair of Michael Kors Jolene boots.  These boots are knee high and gorgeous!!!  Unfortunately, they do not fit around my calves (the one muscular part of my body… go figure!)  Is there anyway to stretch leather boots so they will fit around my calves, or do I give up and return these beautiful boots?

How to Stretch Leather Boots

No need to return the boots. Take them to a cobbler and ask them to either stretch the calf of the boot, or,  if need be, add a piece of elastic and/or leather to the boot to make them larger.  This is pretty common request, so your local cobbler should be able to do it, no problem.  You can find a great cobbler in the nearest mall or in the yellow pages.

You can try and stretch the calfs of your boots yourself and there are several “calf stretcher” products online. I’ve never tried this myself, so I can’t recommend one product over another, but it may be worth a try.

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  • Cindy K

    My cobbler told me to take a shower with my boots on.   Dump the water out, dry out the inside with a towel and put them back on and wear them all day (change out socks often). Wear them again the next day, all day.  By the third day when the leather has dried, apply some quality shoe leather.  Custom fit — he says.

    I just bought a pair of Frye riding boots and I’m petrified I am going to ruin them.  Has anyone heard of this?

  • Princess

    What about if you have skinnier calves? 🙁

  • Christie

    Well, I ended up returning the boots before this answer came out.  However it was for the best.  I ended up finding a pair of knee high Frye boots that were awesome, slightly less expensive, and far more comfortable to wear.  They have a high heel, but they feel like I’m wearing tennis shoes.  Divine!  All in all, I like them much better than the original boots, and they look a lot more rugged and durable.  I’m very pleased.  But it is good to know that boots can be stretched.


  • Keroppi

    I have the same problem with boots. Unfortunately few of the higher end brands make wider boots. I did, however, discover Naturalizer. They make their more popular boots in what they call “plus shaft”. After getting over the fact that I need “plus” anything, I shelled out the $129 for boots that I LOVE!! They may not be Michael Kors, but they work!

    Hope this helps!

  • jj

    It’s also a very good idea to establish a relationship with a quality cobbler.  Maintence and repairs can make an expensive pair of shoes last a very, very long time.