If you're going to get custom boots made for you, you should get exactly what you want and you should get impeccable quality. Period.


The customer is always right...up to a point. People want what they want, and should be able to get it, but sometimes they want things they don't need, aren't in their best interest, or want to have despite not understanding what something actually does.

We want you to have the perfect pair of boots. The custom work boots you've always dreamed of. Casual or heritage boots that you are proud to put on every day, and can't imagine ever not wearing.

But sometimes, people want certain options in their build only to find out they really didn't.

Again, we want you to get the perfect pair of boots or shoes and we want you to love them. So let's talk about some custom boot options that you should really think about before ordering.

Only Get Steel Toe Boots If You Really Need Them

People get rid of steel toe boots long before the boots are worn out all the time. Go on eBay or any classifieds site, and you'll see dozens (if not hundreds) of lightly-used steel toe boots for sale.

The reason?

Somebody bought them, because they thought having steel toe boots was a good idea. They found out that having that much less room in the toe box made them uncomfortable. Once they discovered they didn't actually have to have them for work, they dumped them for a soft toe pair.

If you know for a fact that you need steel toe boots because they are specifically required for your job...then you should get them. If they aren't, consider a composite toe if you want the extra protection.

Toe Caps Look Awesome...But Some Don't Think They Feel That Way

Another option that you might want to think about before ordering is a toe cap.

Oh, they look amazing. Old school jump boots - those old Corcorans - look pretty cool with the brogued toe caps, especially if you polish them up to that glassy mirror-shine. It's a classic way to dress up a pair of boots.

Adding a toe cap adds that extra structure and a bit more toe protection. That's a benefit, but the cap also adds more material right at the widest part of the foot. If you want the extra protection, a celastic toe box can do the same thing without making the toe box as cramped.

10-Inch And 8-Inch Boots

get taller steel toe boots for better protection of your legs

If you need that extra leg protection at work, keeping your shins safe from scraping or getting dinged, a 6-inch boot is a better option.

10-inch and 8-inch boots are great for work boots or for outdoor use hiking or hunting or what have you...but they are a bit much if you're wearing them to the office. Even an 8-inch boot is going to be heavy, and your feet can definitely get warmer than you'd like wearing them indoors.

Even taller boots, such as 12- or 14-inch work boots, have their place in some trades such as for linemen and so on, but they are way too much for a construction worker or people in related trades.

Just like with steel-toe boots, think carefully about how much boot you need.

NFPA Rating And Fire Protection

Firefighters need firefighter boots. If you aren't a firefighter, then you might want to think before ordering boots with fire-rated construction and components.

Vibram Red X soles are excellent. They're Vibram's classic lug pattern, with great traction on almost any surface or condition. Vibram makes them with a softer rubber compound, so they also tend to wear a lot faster.

Flame-proof thread is certainly strong, but quality boot thread is just as strong. If you're not fighting fires, flame-proof thread doesn't do anything but add expense.

Two-Tone Leather On Casual Boots

Two-tone leather seems like a great idea, but every color develops patina and wears at its own rate. They will look amazing when they're brand new, but as the leather begins to wear and change as it does with time and might not like them later.

Also, wingtips were great in the 1940s...but that's where they should stay.

Linesmen Shanks Are Great If You Need Them

Another option for work boots is the linesman shank, which is additional reinforcement in the arch of the boot. Adding extra material there is a great idea for some people, but not for others.

If you're a linesman or an arborist, going up ladders and telephone poles every day, you want that extra material there to keep you from feeling the impact. If you're a construction worker that does a lot of work with a shovel, it's also beneficial for the same reason.

But if that isn't what you do for a living, the extra material adds pointless expense and possibly makes the boots a little uncomfortable in the arch. Arch support is important, but too much material there isn't ideal.

You Want To Order The Right Pair Of Boots

Investing in a pair of handmade custom boots is not like adding bacon to your cheeseburger. It's a huge expense, and you should get exactly what you want...but not at the expense of what you need.

Getting something custom made to your specification is awesome, but you want to think carefully about what you actually need in a pair of boots.

If you start with the right pair of boots for what you'll be doing with them, whether that's for work or for casual daily'll be a lot happier with your purchase.