Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Doc Martens - Breaking In & Styling

I own two pairs of Docs, one black, and one white pair. My black pair the Triumph 14-eyelet boots with a furry lining, and my white pair are an 8-eye pair of the classic 1460 boots. Today I'm going to take you through how I will be styling both pairs for the Autumn Winter season.

When I start breaking in any pair of tough-looking shoes, I do so by hand. When it comes to Docs? I make sure to do it way more thoroughly. Dr Martens have a reputation for making minced meat of your feet. Blisters, bruises, blood, Docs are known to make you, the wearer, suffer for weeks, if not months. So, I took my first step of breaking in shoes by hand, and went at it hell for leather – pardon the pun!

The first thing I do, is bend the soles where you bend at the toes. I bend them really harshly, over and over until it's softened a bit and you can see the beginnings of a crease. The level of ferocity I usually go at this with looks like an attempt to fold the boot in half. The next thing I do, is to put pressure on the heel cup, not enough to break it, but enough to soften it, repeating until I'm satisfied. I'll keep repeating the toe bending and the heel softening until I'm generally happy with the outcome. I've been known to spend the duration of a movie breaking in shoes by hand, and not just Docs, let me tell you!

Then comes the fun part!

Generally, I will put on a pair of ordinary socks, the kind that come above your ankle. Then, I'll put on a pair of thick boot socks. This helps to alleviate the rubbing. Then I walk around my house first, maybe out to my gateway and back again, or if I'm feeling really brave, I'll walk the perimeter of the property. I'll take it slowly enough, stopping every few feet to lean forward on my toes, to help to wear in that crease. Then I'll go back inside and I'll do some chores around the house, or get in the car and go to the supermarket, where I can walk slowly, breaking in the shoes. Take it from me, a full day of walking around Dublin is not advised – I learned that the hard way in college with my Triumphs. If they become too uncomfortable, I'll sit with my feet up for a few minutes, and let them settle. Then I'll do some more walking. I'll do this for a few days before I wear them for a full day.

I must admit, I found the 1460 8-eye classic boots a lot easier to break in than the Triumphs. The leather in my Triumphs is reinforced in places, and it made breaking them in an absolute nightmare. Whereas, the 1460 Classics, they've been much more easy to wear. They're a bit harder to style, but then, when you're in love with the colour black, that's to be expected!

My black 14-eye boots have been a staple in my wardrobe for years. I wear them with skinny jeans, boots, slouchy-tees, dresses, flannel shirts and beanies. In other words, they're the ultimate in casual footwear. The fleece lining also makes them super cosy, and they are quite roomy inside, allowing you to wear fuzzy socks if that's something that takes your fancy... If I'm feeling like a tough chick, but I still want to look girly, I'll pair my Triumphs with thick black tights, a dark floral dress and either a hoodie or a biker jacket.

The new white ones, I'm loving with jeans, and an oversize wooly jumper. Think Rory Gilmore in the first few episodes of Gilmore Girls. High waisted mom jeans rolled up, a vintage tee or a cropped top and a flannel – 90's grunge, am I right?!

When you break in your Docs, they're going to be the comfiest shoes you've ever worn, forevermore. I can vouch for that. Maintain them, mind them, and they will last you a lifetime. They wont go out of style, they won't lose their charm or appeal with age. Docs are timeless, and if you don't have a pair, you need one. 

I buy my Docs on Ebay or from China Blue in Temple Bar.