When winter arrives in New York, I depend on a few wardrobe essentials to get me through until spring: a warm coat, thick tights, cashmere sweaters, fitted leather gloves, and of course, tall knee-high boots. However, since high school, I’ve had to deal with the same challenge – finding boots slim enough to fit my 12.5 inch calves. Like most Asian women, I have thin legs and the typical American boot with a calf circumference of 14+ inches never comes close to fitting correctly. I’ve probably tried on hundreds of boots and most leave a large gaping hole at the top making me feel like I’m always wearing a pair of rainboots. The only way they would fit snug around my legs was to wear them over jeans with a layer of thick socks. This all changed when I tried on my first pair of Guidi boots.
Before 2010, I had never heard of Guidi and if you look them up, you won’t find much as they tend to keep a low profile. What you will find is that Guidi footwear are produced in a leather tannery located in Tuscany, Italy. The tannery started in 1896 when three master craftsmen, Guido Guidi, Giovanni Rosellini and Gino Ulivo, established “Conceria Guidi E Rosellini”. The Tuscan region is historically known for its tanneries and since being founded, the Guidi tannery has continued to supply the best designers with all their leather needs.
The current tanner is Ruggero Guidi. He has spent his time focused on creating beautiful leather shoes that are steeped in tradition but have a modern twist. He refuses to go the mass production route and creates small quantities of quality shoes. Guidi is also very selective with which stores can stock and sell their shoes and bags. I was lucky enough to get a pair of the purple 410s.
- Color: Purple
- Collection: SS10
- Style no.: 410
- Reversed cordovan
- Fully lined
- Front zip tall boot
- Fit: runs very small so size up at least 1 size. I actually went up 2 sizes. My American size is 5.5 so I typically get a 35 or 35.5 shoe, but these are a 37 and my toe touches the front of the boot.
Why I love them:
- No more gaping, no need for thick socks or wearing over jeans, they fit my legs perfectly. It’s as if they were made specifically for me. And, not just this pair, but every pair of Guidis I’ve tried on. They just fit! Amazing.
- The leather and craftsmanship are exceptional. These specific boots are horse leather and examining the boots you can see the quality and work that went into shaping them. Plus, each boot is slightly different so you know they didn’t come off an assembly line.
- Small quantities created means I still have yet to see anyone else in NYC wearing my boots.
- And, specifically for these boots, I love the eggplant color. It’s a good break from the sea of black boots in the city.
I grabbed my boots from Brooklyn’s Eva Gentry. However, the store closed in 2012. They still have a consignment store open where I’ll occasionally spot a pair or two of Guidi boots. Keep an eye on their blog for updates on what they’re currently carrying.
Aside from Eva Gentry, it’s been pretty difficult to find stores carrying Guidis in New York or online. However, I know that Atelier and If in Soho carries the brand. Online, check out FarFetch and H. Lorenzo.