Style Hunt: The Riding Boot

A chic casual look with black riding boots and a Loewe puzzle bag. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

earrings | scarf | lipstick | cardigan | v-neck | bag | jeans | fragrance | boots

Boot Up

I’ve been feeling a bit out of step with Fashion lately in that I’m ready to start wearing knee boots again. Not over-the-knee boots, not scrunchy or high-heeled boots, but rather a classic riding boot. For the past several seasons, there hasn’t been much offered between ankle-grazing and thigh-hugging styles. Whether or not this pendulum is due to swing, I’ve decided to venture into that sparse middle ground.

I really like how a sleek knee boot works with leggings or skinny jeans to help balance a more voluminous top. They also look great with both above-the-knee and midi-length skirts. I have a several-years-old pair from Etienne Aigner, but have been checking out the end-of-season sales to see if anything catches my eye. I’m steering clear of more casual or distressed styles in favor of something that will dress up or down.

Black knee boot with buckle detail. Info at une femme d'un certain age.

Above: these have a fun buckle detail and are currently 60% off. Also available in brown. (More sizes available here, though not as deeply discounted.)

black knee boots from Cole Haan. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

These from Cole Haan have classic riding boot styling, and a pebbled leather finish which tends to be more durable. I’ve often found CH leather goods to be a good value for the money.

Black knee boots from Stuart Weitzman on sale. Details at une femme d'un certain age.

They’re on the spendy side, but these boots from Stuart Weitzman have a clean, sleek look, and gorgeous soft leather. I’ve tried these on and they run about ½ size large, so take into consideration if ordering.


black riding boot from La Canadienne. Details at une femme d'un certain age


If I lived in a wetter climate, I might spring for these, which are weatherproof, and very well-reviewed. I like that little bit of heel. Currently 20% off.

Do you have a favorite style of knee boots?


 Stuart Weitzman |  Cole Haan | Frye | Ralph Lauren | ecco | Børn


Aquatalia | Blondo | La Canadienne | Aquatalia

Wide Calf

Naturalizer | Cole Haan | Nine West | Michael Kors | Frye


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  1. January 4, 2018 / 4:23 am

    This is my favorite boot style! They’re so versatile and warm!! Thanks for the suggestions.

  2. Janet
    January 4, 2018 / 4:40 am

    They are my favourite too! I can live in these! Great examples that you posted.

  3. January 4, 2018 / 5:12 am

    I’m with you Susan, I personally love the riding boot. Mine are old Ralph Lauren and a true basic that I find myself coming back to each fall and winter.

  4. January 4, 2018 / 5:25 am

    I’m a big fan of riding boots. They’re warm, comfy and add a great dash of style to simple outfits. Aquatalia and Le Canadienne are some of my personal favorites.

    • Patricia
      January 4, 2018 / 5:59 am

      I agree…both Aquatalia and La Canadienne are very expensive but they last and last. Here in the snowy upper mid-west, water resistant boots are a must. Lord and Taylor has a nice selection of La Canadienne and they are often on sale. Bluefly has good prices on Aquatalia. 6pm (a Zappos affiliate) also has good prices on both, but limited sizing.

  5. Linda Boardman Kerr
    January 4, 2018 / 6:32 am

    I bought a pair of Charles Jourdan riding boots in the early 80’s. $200.00 at the time, which was a fortune for me. They are STILL in my closet, re-soled, and I still wear them occasionally, even though there is a tiny hole starting on the ball of one of them. It’s IMPORTANT with boots to keep them in boot trees! I use old T and C magazines for all my boots, and they work well. (And it’s fun to occasionally peek into the old ones!)

    • Kelly
      January 4, 2018 / 7:14 am

      My stepmom taught me to use empty 1L soda bottles 😉

    • Jill Ann
      January 4, 2018 / 6:22 pm

      I’ve heard that pool noodles work well as boot trees

  6. January 4, 2018 / 6:39 am

    You know after kind of giving them a break last fall/winter, I’ve been wearing my simple black leather riding boots again. They are so practical, go with everything, and they’re warm and comfy too!

    Dawn Lucy

  7. Lyn
    January 4, 2018 / 7:21 am

    Stuart Weitzman would get my vote. I don’t wear boots (live in Florida and don’t like anything hitting me around the ankle), but I’m a sucker for soft leather.
    Your blog has inspired me to try some low shoe-boots, but they would have to be packable, and good for a full day of walking. I’ve been looking for over a year. (It’s hard to build a stylish travel wardrobe around black oxfords, but they have been faithful servants. An old foot injury has made me too cautious to trust anything else.)

  8. Linda B
    January 4, 2018 / 7:30 am

    This is inspiring me to maybe get my riding boots out again. A few years ago, after longing for riding boots for years, I got a nice pair at this time of year when they went on sale. They are a snazzy black and brown combination, Vince Camuto. I have yet to take them out this year–partly because we have had an overwarm winter for the most part in the Sonoran Desert of southern AZ. (Not meaning to gloat–I would much prefer some chill, though I am glad I don’t live in MN anymore about now. . .) Truthfully, I prefer my ankle boots overall. They give me better freedom of movement. But I do love the look of riding boots, especially with skirts and dresses! I should really get mine out, before it is utterly too late soon.

  9. Kathleen Ludgate
    January 4, 2018 / 8:31 am

    I love all boots….have Ralph Lauren riding boots both in black and brown. I also have Blondo brown booties and a lovely pair of black echo booties. I also have a lovely pair of Frye cowboy boots in brown and a pair of teal cowboy boots with beaded flowers.

  10. Carolyn from Oregon
    January 4, 2018 / 9:32 am

    I adore riding boots and have worn them all my adult life. They add style to my very casual wardrobe and look great with everything from leggings to skinny jeans and pencil skirts.

    I can still remember my first pair of cordovan Etienne Aigners in the late ’70’s., Seems like I get a good decade’s wear out of each pair. I agree with maintenance mentioned by others, cedar shoe trees, boot shapers, resoling as needed and boxing them up over the summer.

  11. Vicki Mullan
    January 4, 2018 / 11:33 am

    Dear Susan, I rarely comment upon blogs like this, but I have to add a new year message to tell you that I have become hooked ever since I first signed up. You have transformed the way I think about my day to day dressing. I realised that I have spent the majority of my clothing budget on “special occasion” dressing rather than the workhorses that I wear every day and which I buy from cut price shops and sites. It’s such a false economy and I am now going to sell off all the expensive, wear once or twice white elephants and concentrate on buying good quality, everyday pieces(in the sales). I have also taken on board the long, lean silhouette you model with such elan. Thank you so much.

  12. Joanna
    January 4, 2018 / 2:12 pm

    I’m with you. The OTK boots are not for me and I never liked the slouchy style. I do love a simple riding boot though. I always wear them with my skinnies in the winter. You’ve picked s nice selection here. Living in the wet Pacific Northwest, waterproof is very important to me.

  13. Elizabeth
    January 4, 2018 / 4:34 pm

    I bought a pair of classic black riding boots from Ariat a few years ago and I never tire of them.

  14. Nicole K
    January 4, 2018 / 5:33 pm

    I used to wear riding boots constantly circa 2009-12, but then they seemed to go out of style for awhile and mine have been languishing. Have not felt the need to pull them out, but I am looking for some calf height boots which feel more current to me.

    For the sweater you chose, I have an N. Peal sweater I bought on Net A Porter a few years ago and it’s one of my favorites! Great quality.

    Thanks for your posts!

  15. Jill A
    January 5, 2018 / 3:13 am

    Susan, I look forward to your emails and read each blog post. You are an inspiration! Our styles are very similar and I buy through your links whenever I can to say “thank you!” An exception – the Chergui perfume. You posted about it last year, but I didn’t want to purchase without trying it first. However, I should have known I’d like it if you do. I fell in love and bought it immediately. So thank you for that recommendation as well–will reorder via your links.

    Best of luck with your remodeling. It will be beautiful and worth the inconvenience. Looking forward to seeing the end result.

  16. PresDuLac
    January 5, 2018 / 9:48 am

    I went on a riding boot binge a couple of years ago and tried so many.
    The ones I wound up liking best when considering style, comfort, and price all came from Easy Spirit.
    I bought 4 pairs and I can walk for hours in them too.
    Right now, they have some nice low heeled leather/suede riding boots on sale for $60 – free shipping too.

  17. January 6, 2018 / 3:04 am

    It’s so interesting that they are in style in the USA, because in Japan, I realised this year that knee high boots are terribly out of style. Everyone is into ankle boots or flats. Which is a tragedy because winter is very cold! They were in style for about two decades until this year.

    • Susan B
      January 6, 2018 / 6:12 am

      Hi lesleyito, actually they’re not in style here either, which is why the selection is more sparse than it was a few years ago.

  18. Bitsy
    January 6, 2018 / 3:53 pm

    I wear knee high boots in cold weather, whether in style or not. I have La Canadienne in black and dark brown. I can vouch for their durability. My black pair are about 15 years old and look practically new. I also have 2 pairs of their ankle boots (again, black and brown), and a pair of Dubarry chelsea boots. But for for cold, the knee boots always win out.

  19. January 8, 2018 / 6:19 pm

    I love a good riding boot. I have a pair of La Canadienne in the bootie style, thrifted of course, and they never let me down in wet weather. I just wish someone would make slip-proof boots. Even super treads can be very slidey on icy sidewalks. Let’s get some picks in our soles! Hahaha. Or a stylish add-on that doesn’t look like we’re ready to go mountain climbing. The boots you’ve featured are all beautiful.

  20. Elizabeth
    January 12, 2018 / 1:14 pm

    FYI, those gorgeous Stuart Weitzman boots are 50% off today ❤️

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