With scrawny 11.9-inch calves, I've been on a mission for years (decades!) to find the very best, most beautiful slim calf boots. There have been successes, but for whatever reason, what remain most elusive are the perfect riding boots for thin calves. Heels and wedges are challenging to find with a narrow shaft, but equestrian inspired? The toughest of all. In this blog I'll review riding boots with calf circumferences published, or reported anecdotally, at under 14 inches around. If your legs are like mine, maybe you'll find your dream boot here :)

Please note: Except where otherwise stated in the captions, all photos & text are copyright this "Howdy Slim" blog and cannot be used elsewhere without permission.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Vince Camuto Vacilla

boots for skinny legs
A bit of "leg room" with knit tights
You know those long, smooth, military inspired wool coats with buttons all down the front that pop into fashion mags almost every fall? The Vince Camuto Vacilla is the boot version of those. You can get your long, lean military look on with the Vacilla, at a fraction of the cost of one of these high-end coats.

The calf fit? Well, these were a little big on me up top, with the opening measuring 14.5 around in shoe size 8. The 13.5 inches commonly listed online is probably for size 6 in this boot. I will say that the foot was a bit roomy, so you could probably size down 1/2 size, yielding a slightly snugger calf, if you give the Vacilla a try.

camuto narrow shaft
With stockings, the gap is more obvious
The all-important "widest part of my leg" point -- 11.5 inches UP the boot shaft from bottom of the foot -- measured only 13 inches around, which is an inch of extra room for me. Not bad, especially over jeans, cords or the midweight, stretch J Crew pixie pant I tried these on with. Over thin stockings they did look more gappy.

The ankle on the Vacilla measured 11 inches for me, which is almost 3 inches bigger than my ankle. (There is a small zipper by the ankle for easy on & off, but I didn't need to use it.) Could be a recipe for bagginess, except that the stretch-fabric back of this boot is quite thick and stiff, and between that and the firm suede front, I didn't get much ankle slouch at all.
boots for thin legs
Ankle slouch minimal, thanks to the materials

The embossed, roughly half-inch-diameter gold buttons running all down the boot set this style apart from the pack.

I like that this an "inclusively" fashion-forward boot. I could see my teen nieces wearing it with minis, skinnies or even cool shorts & tights. I can run around in it with my beloved cord leggings, sweater & scarf/fun necklace uniform. And an older lady could tastefully rock the Vacilla with a great wrap dress or fitted trousers.   

Beauty: ****/5
Value: *****/5
Calf slimness: ****/5
In black.
Find it at:

The last few of these hanging on at retail & even clearance sites appear to be sold as of Feb. 2016, so check ebay if you're feeling lucky 

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