How To Stretch the Calves of Leather Boots

Instead of donating or throwing away a nice pair of leather boots that are too tight, stretch out the calves to make them fit more comfortably.Use boot-calf stretchers for a hands-off approach, or try spraying them with a solution of rubbing alcohol and water.You will be able to stretch the calves by a full 1 to 2 inches with time.

Step 1: Purchase stretchers for the calves of boots.

A pair of stretchers with good reviews can be found online or in a local shoe store.Plastic stretchers are more expensive than wooden ones.The stretchers come in pairs.If you are buying them individually, consider buying 2.You don't have to wait 12 hours for the first boot to finish stretching before you can move on to the second one.Plastic stretchers work just as well as wooden ones and usually take up less space.If you want to purchase stretchers that are long enough, make sure to pay attention to the length of the stretcher.

Step 2: The calf stretchers should be put into each boot.

The stretchers should be positioned so that the narrower end goes into the boot first.The stretchers should be pushed down until they reach the actual body of the boot.The entire calf will be stretched evenly.You can get the stretchers into the boots completely by keeping them unexpanded.

Step 3: The stretchers are pulled taut by twisting the handle.

The leather gets tighter and tighter as the stretchers push against it.When you can see the leather straining against the stretchers, keep twisting.You should be able to expand the calves of your leather boots by about 1 to 1.5 inches with time.

Step 4: For about 12 hours, let the stretchers do their work.

Before you need to wear your boots, start the process of stretching leather.If you leave the stretchers in for more than 12 hours, the boots won't hurt.If you stretch the boots for a short time, the leather will shrink back to its original size.

Step 5: Continue stretching until you get the fit you want.

Remove the stretchers and try on your boots after the initial 12 hours.If they are still too tight, you can expand the stretchers for an additional 12 hours.You could take your boots to a cobbler to see if they can expand them a bit further.

Step 6: In a spray bottle, mix 1 cup of water and rubbing alcohol.

The rubbing alcohol loosens the leather, which allows it to expand and stretch.The rubbing alcohol won't evaporate quickly if it's Diluted with water.You can buy a leather-stretching spray from a shoe store or online.The range of products is $10-$20.

Step 7: When the boot calves are saturated with the mix, spray the inside of them.

It's a good idea to wipe away any spray that ends up on the outside of the boots.If you have a hard time getting the bottom half of the calves wet, try flipping the boots upside down.Make more of the alcohol and water solution if needed.

Step 8: Wear the boots for about 30 minutes until they dry.

Put the boots on after spraying the insides.As the leather dries, it should conform to the exact size of your calves.If you don't like wearing wet boots, use boot-calf stretchers with the spray.

Step 9: Rub a leather-conditioning cream on your boots.

The risk of your boots drying out and cracking is increased when water is applied to them.The conditioning cream will help keep the leather supple.You can apply the conditioning cream while you are wearing the boots, or wait until you have taken them off again.Either way, the conditioning cream will work.

Step 10: The calves will fit comfortably if the process is repeated 3-4 more times.

After spraying the inside of the boots with water and rubbing alcohol solution, wear them until they dry, and continue to apply conditioning cream each time.It may take several sessions for the calves to fully stretch.Take the boots to a cobbler if the calves are too small after a few attempts.They can use more than one method to manipulate the size.

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