Although summer appears to be enjoying a last hurrah, we’re all mentally packing away our sandals and flip flops and wondering how long we’ve got before we can start layering up.
Knowing the British weather, you can probably safely assume that within the next couple of weeks pedicures and flip-flop related blisters will be out the window and we can legitimately start wearing cosy socks, woolly tights and comfortable autumn boots.
To make the transition easier, I’ve rounded up some of this season’s most attractive autumn boots, so you can start planning your cooler weather outfits today…
Colourful autumn coats
Under jeans or trousers
Ankle boots are perfect for wearing under jeans or trousers; finishing (unsurprisingly) at the ankle, they won’t spoil the line of the lower leg, and they won’t cause you to overheat if you’re wearing them indoors, as a knee-high boot under a trouser leg might.
Try: Timberland Earthkeepers Amston, £115 (pictured above)
Coming in tan, dark brown and black, these suede ankle boots have a padded, soft leather cuff that will keep your ankle supported whilst disappearing seamlessly under jeans. The rubber wedge heel will give you height without making your footing unsteady – perfect for strolling through leaf-strewn paths on a bright autumn day!
With tights and a skirt
You can also wear ankle boots with tights, and team them with a knee-length skirt; though in my opinion, this is more of a casual look, and perhaps best avoided if you’re trying to go for a smarter image.
Try: Rieker Women’s Boots, £65 (pictured above)
Of course, going casual means you can really have some fun – these boots come in brown, red, blue or black, and even if you plump for one of the more sensible options rather than a pop of colour, the devil really is in the detail.
Each one has a colourful section of multi-coloured wool peeking out from behind the laces, and around the cuff of the boot too – you definitely won’t want to hide these under trousers, they deserve to be partnered with tights and a skirt and used to really give your outfit some pizazz.
With a long skirt
If it’s not a maxi skirt with sandals in the summer, I always think long skirts look best with boots – they have to find the line between not so marvellous (see above) that you can’t bear to hide them away, but pretty enough to admire if someone catches a glimpse of them as you stride through the park.
Try: Hush Puppies Boots Vivianna, £85 (pictured above)
Whenever I think of teaming long skirts and boots, I picture Victorian governess swishing elegantly through corridors, which makes these boots the perfect fit.
Go for black or brown with a patterned skirt, or paint the town red with a crimson pair that you’ve paired with a plainer skirt to avoid distracting attention from your toes.
Why we are not over the heel
Knee length boots
Under (or over!) jeans or trousers
Adding an extra layer of warmth, knee-length boots under trousers are perfect if you know you’re going to be pottering about outside for a large amount of time – perhaps at a fireworks night, or Christmas shopping.
Wear your jeans on the outside, or tucked in – a handful of years ago fashion came down very firmly on the side of tucking trousers into boots, but last year saw a resurgence of boots back to where they once belonged on the inside of the trouser leg, which now puts us in the enviable position of being able to do whatever we feel most comfortable doing.
And with the illusion of length knee high boots give, you can easily forgo a heel and go for an altogether more comfortable flat option, if you’re conscious of being a bit vertically challenged in comparison to your contemporaries.
Try: Next Leather Strap Long Boots, £85 (pictured above)
These brown boots feature a low heel, and are the ideal choice for throwing on as you leave the house for a dog walk or a trip into town.
Flats are back
With tights and a skirt
This is perhaps the most classic autumn look there is – knee high boots, woolly tights, a corduroy skirt and a cosy jacket and scarf. This look can take you from work to play without missing a beat, regardless of what you’re up to.
Try: Hotter Mystery Boots, £89 (pictured above)
I find that some knee length boots gather irritatingly around the ankle as gravity takes its inevitable toll, giving an unstreamlined look that I can’t say I’m fond of, but these intriguingly named boots solve the issue by taking it and running. The ruched leg is designed to look slouched, and because it’s doing it deliberately rather than haphazardly, it looks great.
Our pick of the best autumn waistcoats
With a long skirt
Long skirts have an unlovely habit of dwelling in puddles then brushing their soggy bottoms over your lower legs with no warning. Knee high boots prevent this from happening, which is why I will be forever in their debt.
Plus, if you’re not a fan of tights, teaming knee high boots with a long skirt and forgoing tights means you can keep your legs warm without feeling too stifled – perfect for sitting by the fire in a pub with a hot chocolate!
Try: Clarks Barley Ray Grey Suede, £125 (pictured above)
Grey is a fabulous choice as they’ll go with brown or black skirts, as well as patterned or coloured. The fashionable block heel on these will keep you stable and comfortable as well as chic!
Read our grown up guide to autumn style