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.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Seychelles Dramatic

So excited!

It's only January, and I've found us a *****/5-for-calf-slimness boot! When adjusted, that is. Unfortunately there aren't a ton of sizes left (sure wish I'd spotted this one sooner), so act fast if you like what you see.

It takes a minute to get this hip style -- the Seychelles Dramatic -- fitted to your leg, but worth it for that sleek, calf-hugging look we're all after.

This is a tall boot. In the size 7.5 I'm wearing in these photos, the shaft is 17.5 inches tall. That will put the Dramatic, unfortunately, out of the running for shorter folks, who will likely find it hits 'em right on the kneecap -- not ideal in terms of comfort or style. For those of us either of average or taller stature or proportionately long-limbed, it's a keeper.

I was easily able to tighten the back laces on these skinny calf riding boots to a 13" top circumference, 13" at midcalf, and 10" around the ankle. Seems it could tighten further, to your comfort level, at top & midcalf, though perhaps not much more at the ankle.

What to do with the laces themselves, once tied to the desired fit, is a bit tricky. For the photo at left, I tried tucking the (long) loose ends for one boot and, for the other one, doing them up in a bow. Which do you prefer? Or maybe there's a better solution I haven't thought of.

The leather is soft, smooth and supple. The stretch panel that runs all the way down the back of the boot, underneath the laces, is nice and silky, though I doubt it would do well in more punishing winter climes.

The half zip is super helpful, and in fact -- always a great sign vis a vis shaft slimness --  I couldn't get my legs into these boots without unzipping.

No tread to speak of on the sole further supports my view that these cuties are made for fashion, not rugged outdoor pursuits. But fashionable they are!

The foot is a bit more rounded than the standard "almond" shape, so expect your feet to look a little smaller in these. Not a bad thing, unless you're self-conscious about your teeny feet! (Not my situation ;)

And speaking of feet, there's one other caveat with the Dramatic besides its fairly tall shaft height: The foot on this one runs small. If you’re between half sizes, definitely go with the larger of the two. And if you consistently wear one size, consider ordering up by half a size, especially if you plan to wear thick tights or socks of substance under these.

Beauty: ****/5
Value: ****/5 or better, depending on sale price you snag
Calf slimness: *****/5

In black
Find it at:
Amazon (limited quantities as of early December 2018, but still a decent selection of sizes available)

Nordstrom (any chance they'll restock? it's happened before w/ Nordies.....)

Tip: Zappos is out of stock on this boot, but you can still watch the shop's video clip of the Seychelles Dramatic on fairly slim legs:


  1. Very cute! Btw, I am constantly seeing your pictures used on sites like Poshmark - obviously without your permission. Do you want to be made aware when we find these?

    1. Ugh, I see them sometimes on ebay & ask sellers to take them down. Had not thought of checking Poshmark. Are there other sites where you see my pix? I don't want to burden you or others with tipping me off to these unauthorized uses, but I would like to know where I should be looking, in general, so that I can address at least some of them. Sigh. Thanks for the heads up!

  2. Poshmark is the only one I use consistently but I’ll let you know if I see any more! :)

    1. Just cane across one: https://poshmark.com/listing/Frye-Molly-Boots-59b4454e8f0fc4a8e700f090?utm_source=gdm&l_con=PREOWNED%2FUSED&gdm_bottom=false&campaign_id=971517964&utm_campaign=971517964&enable_guest_buy_flow=true&gclid=Cj0KCQjwnqzWBRC_ARIsABSMVTOikTl3IIwkly3pyHj33hknYlxSYpSs5IH2I7oODXji6R31tcJRDhgaAvsJEALw_wcB

    2. Thank you Priya! I couldn't find a way to contact her privately so put a comment on the product listing page. I really appreciate your having my back! :) :) :)