Chelsea boots!!!

I live in the southwest of England, near the Atlantic coast (on an estuary, not on the ocean itself).

It’s generally a mild-ish climate. People grow palm trees. I know I complain about the weather – rainy, grey, damp, cloudy, gloomy – that’s our autumn into winter. Mostly we worry about flooding three to four times before spring.

However, the last week and this coming week the temps have been/will be colder than New York City. It’s unfair and appalling. And really really wrong. There have been a few sunny days which has helped but mostly it’s just been freezing and cloudy, and every few days the morning starts with freezing fog. Like in a horror movie. On Sunday, it was foggy in the morning, cleared for 10 minutes, and then fogged over again. The fog makes things even colder and wetter.

The nasturtium have finally failed. Mightily (see pic). I won’t be able to cut them back until it’s warmer though.

I’ve so far managed to do my night time walks but not sure I’ll be able to consistently until it warms up just a bit. Yes, I realise I’m whining. So be it.

Anyway, onward to today’s title.

In January 2022, I wrote a post about trying to find the ‘perfect’ Chelsea boot ( Alas, at that time it hadn’t happened and didn’t over many further months of looking. Everything was too big, too clunky, just not right. I own some beautiful heeled shoes. But they sit in my closet. I look at them lovingly but I no longer have the oomph to wear them. It just takes too much energy and focus to walk in 2-3 inch heels. So, everything I wear now is basically flat and I’m always on the lookout for great flat shoes.

So, back in January I had tried Blundstones, looked at Dr Martens, perused lots of sites. Since then, I’ve tried Birkenstocks and maybe something else but it escapes me now. Alas they were all all wrong and got sent back (except the DMs, which I never could get myself to buy – they are now just silly money).

Years ago, I had Clarks Orinoco Chelseas. Which were fine but were never beloved. I did wear them out though.

For some reason, I decided to look at the Clarks site again in the hope they now offered something new that might fit the bill. I’m sure I had looked earlier but must not have seen anything.

Low and behold, low and behold.

There they were. A new offering (maybe it’s been on the site for years and I just didn’t notice it).

Orinoco2 Lane. What a stupid name for a boot.

In any case they are not only exactly what I wanted, they are offered in my size (titchy size 3 UK/5 US). Clarks stocks them in black, olive green, black patent (how pointless) and a really weird cream that no one seems to want as they are deeply discounted.

I got black because … well … that’s what works with my rather narrow wardrobe. They really are perfect – exactly perfect (see pics): not too high on the ankle, opening isn’t too wide, leather is nice, shape is classic, sole is good solid rubber. They fit well (particularly the ankle/heel area), the top of the inner foot is soft and lined, so warm, and the footbed is comfortable. They weren’t cheap but certainly weren’t as pricey as DMs, Blundstones, Birkenstocks, etc.

See, something to make me a happy bunny in the midst of all my grumping about our unpleasant weather.

No perfume today. The overwhelming smell everywhere here, not just my village, is wood smoke. Like, anywhere you go. My wood stove is going almost constantly, as are those of everyone else in the area. I get the dog out in the middle of the day when temps are their warmest and try to discern between different types of wood I am smelling. Mostly people appear to burn pine, oak and compressed woodchip, which burns very hot. Sometimes you get something that smells of aged whisky or even rum.

So, that’s me. I hope your weather is significantly better than here and if not at least you have nice snow. Anything surprisingly pleasant happen recently?

Pics are mine

  • Tom says:

    Actually we have been having rain and chilly (for SoCal) weather- lows flirting with freezing. Rain has mostly been overnight, which I love. My shoe purchase was a couple of pairs of regular, classic, penny-style loafers on sale for under $40 each from Nordstrom. Very comfy, not trying too hard to be trendy, and don’t scream “UNDER $40!!. One pair black and one brown.

  • AnnieA says:

    Clarks is a nice, solid brand, and those look like nice, solid boots. Recently bought a pair of ladies Blundstones, which fit really well – except around the ankle. Any suggestions out there about how to break them in without tears? (and bandaids)

    • alityke says:

      Look round for “anti blister” socks or walking socks with a thin thermal pair under.
      Next have both in the UK & I wear the double layer anti blister ones in preference to normal socks now

      • AnnieA says:

        A and C, thank you for your suggestions! I live near both a cobbler and a hiking equipment store so with luck painful walking days will soon be in the past.

    • cinnamon says:

      Could a shoemaker stretch the back a little? Otherwise, if the boots fit snugly silk socks, as they’ll have some slip. Good luck.

  • Dina C. says:

    Love those boots, Cinnamon! I had a pair of Clark’s boots in the early 2000s for 12 years which I loved. A cross between a Chelsea, an Engineer, and a Motorcycle boot, but not too clunky. I wore those things into the ground until they were rubbish. So glad you found your HG boots! I got to see some dear friends from the 80s this weekend, but sadly because of a funeral. A friend’s mom died. That was my third funeral in 2 weeks, and I’ve got a fourth on this Tuesday. Our weather has been cold, rainy, foggy and sunny. No snow yet.

    • cinnamon says:

      I had desert boots as a teenager. Some Clarks stuff is just awesome, but some now is just really really weird. That’s a lot of funerals. I hope everyone lived long, good lives.

  • Portia says:

    Hey Cinnamon,
    We have had a glorious week of summer sunshine. It’s been perfect for all the social get togethers and some wandering around our suburb (Parramatta) and the city.
    This morning I woke to really cold winds and grey skies as I walked the dog that waited till we returned home to become a torrential thunderstorm. Seriously epic winds and rain with cracks of thunder very close by. HEAVEN (if you are inside with a cuppa).
    Wearing Granville by DIOR. Lemon tinged greenness.

    Hope it warms for you soon.
    Portia xx

    • cinnamon says:

      Getting vicarious pleasure from your weather, even the storm. The mist has lifted today. Same temperature, completely different feeling.

  • March says:

    Those are so cute! They’re less casual-looking than the Blundstones which I see everywhere here (I gave mine to my daughter, they were just a bit wide for my feet.) I’m still trying to break in my Doc Marten boots years later lol so you made the right call there.

    • cinnamon says:

      Um, cute. Not a word I love. They are less casual than Blundstones. The Birkenstocks were sort of in-between. I love the idea of DMs but they’ve gotten so expensive and I think you have to have a particular shape of foot for them to be comfortable out of the box.

  • matty1649 says:

    Well done on finding your …Chelsea boots.. they look very nice

    • cinnamon says:

      Thank you. I miss Zappos (which we don’t have here) where you kind look at loads of things in one place.

  • Maggiecat says:

    Rainy and gloomy here, as it can be in late fall/early winter in Dallas. Holiday errands and plans have been going smoothly, and that’s always a pleasant surprise.

    Love your boots!

    • cinnamon says:

      It’s always nice when things work well. I have one set of holiday shopping to sort which has to be done in-person vs online. Hoping for decent weather that day.

  • alityke says:

    Excellent news on the chelseas, very nice indeed.
    I stood chatting to a friend of mums today to find the tiniest snowflakes twinkling around us. It felt too cold to snow & I hadn’t smelt it in the air. There again, I do have a lurgy. Going to do C-19 test in the morning if it’s no better.

    • cinnamon says:

      No snow here (London looks like winter wonderland). Arg on the lurgy. Hope it is receding and not covid. My son has ‘something’ — not covid as I made him take a test and negative — which is seasonal and unpleasant. Very cold here today but so far no mist so more bearable.

      • alityke says:

        Not Covid. The test was negative. Just a very heavy cold. I haven’t had one since retirement & the poor dog is confused by my coughing, sneezing & blowing.

        • cinnamon says:

          There are so many lurgies this year. I’ve been wearing a mask indoors in the hope I don’t pick up whatever my son has.

  • Tara C says:

    Pouring rain here today. I hear you on your bad weather – cold is one thing, but when combined with extremely damp it’s mortal. I do love the smell of wood smoke.

    Congrats on finding your boots! I wear Blundstones, they are very popular in Canada, although I wouldn’t wear them in the dead of winter as the traction is not good.

    As for good things, I received a large unexpected cheque, always welcome!

    • cinnamon says:

      Indeed, wet and cold not pleasant. Indoor weather. With simple cold at least you can wrap up and do stuff outdoors. I think I recall you saying you had Blundstones. They look much cooler than these Clarks but my feet are simply too small. And that’s awesome on the cheque.