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.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Steve Madden Ryyder

I'm not sure where Macy's (or Steve Madden) got their 13 inch circumference measurement for the Ryyder. By my tape measure, it's 13.75 at midcalf (still decently slim), 10.75 at the ankle and 14.75" up at the very top. In short, a slimmer than average but not terribly skinny boot.

What distinguishes the Ryyder, then? Very nice, soft feeling leather, to start. And an overall look much like the coveted (but skinnier) Kors Arley, with a soft, not stiff, stretch panel in back and pretty gold hardware.

Where the Arley has a gold nameplate in the front, across the top of the foot, the Ryyder has a small, textless gold bar in back above the heel, which I rather prefer.

These accents nudge the boot into slightly dressier territory than many riding styles, though it will still look terrific with jeans.

Oh, and the sale price is fabulous, too.

Beauty: ***/5
Value: *****/5
Calf slimness: ***/5

In black.
Find it: As of spring '15, this one seems to be gone everywhere. Share in the comments if you find it!


  1. I am SO happy I found your blog. I have slim calves as well; not quite as slim as yours at about 12.75 inches and wearing a size 8.5-9 makes it very difficult for me to find boot that fit well. I have only one pair of chocolate brown suede boots from La Canadienne that I paid $400 for but fit me very well. I felt so lucky to have found these after first trying on 100s of boots in stores over the years and then resorting to the internet where I could speak to customer service first to help decrease my order number but like you have still found that many sites provide inaccurate information. I've worn these LC boots so much in 2 falls/winters that I've already had the soles replaced. With your blog's existence I can now dream of owning a second or gasp, even third pair of boots.

  2. Welcome! I think your slightly larger calf size (compared to mine) will be offset by your slightly larger shoe size so that the boots I feature here should look very similar on your legs & mine. La Canadienne don't go on sale very often, do they? I love that brand for weatherproofing the leather & for always giving us thin legged women at least a couple of styles a year that will work. Aquatalia, too. Thanks so much for being here; enjoy the search!