Blink ‘Fennell’ ankle boots, £43.99
At around about this time every year, I start to realise that although I have lots of shoes, I don’t really have much in the way of practical winter footwear. I’m talking here about the kind of shoes I can wear to walk the dog, or take part in some other kind of outdoor activity that requires a fair bit of walking. In the spring/summer, I’ve been relying on my growing collection of Melissa flats for this kind of thing, but they won’t be much use when the weather gets really cold, so every year in October (or thereabouts), a search for low-heeled ankle boots begins.
Last year, my search was fairly successful, and I found myself a couple of pairs of comfortable, practical ankle boots, one of which was a tan pair from New Look with a studded heel. I really like those boots, and have had a lot of wear out of them in the few months I’ve owned them, so when I saw this very similar black pair by Blink at Spartoo, I figured they’d be similarly useful, and a good use of a Spartoo gift code.
The first thing I noticed about these was the smell. You know that “cheap shoes” smell that emanates from certain budget shoe stores? These smell like that. I’m hoping it’ll wear off, and I’m sure it will, but the fact that it exists at all tells you these definitely aren’t leather. I obviously knew that when I ordered them, so it’s not a problem, but I have to admit, I wasn’t expecting the scent!
The second thing I noticed was that the zip on the side of these isn’t actually real: it’s just for show, and there’s another, working zip on the inside of each boot to allow you to get them on and off: something I should probably have realised before I started tugging at the zip on the front and wondering why it wouldn’t budge!
Next up, the fit: I ordered my usual size, and would say these are on the generous size of normal – they’re just a tiny bit roomier than I would ideally like, but not so large I’d want to go down a size. Given that I’ll be wearing them with socks, though, I think they’ll be fine, although I do wish the ankle opening was slightly smaller. My biggest issue with boots like this is that I always feel like they make my feet look gigantic, and while my New Look boots have a fairly snug fit at the ankle, these are wider: again, not so much that I won’t wear them, but enough for them not to be PERFECT.
All of that said, I did decide to keep them: as I said, I’ll mostly be wearing them for dog-walking, and other similar activities, and while they’re not perfect, they’re more than good enough for that!