Five Plus One is our weekly series of buyer’s guides. We pick a specific category and dig up five great options along with one that’s a little outside the norm.
Despite heritage wear continuing to grow in popularity, Lace-to-Toe boots are sadly still under-appreciated. Not only are they one of the classic styles of workboots, but their toe lacing structure actually has functional benefits — by lacing to farther down boot, you are free to lace different portions of the boot more or less tightly. Not only can this help make boots more comfortable, but it also makes sizing LTT boots slightly more forgiving, especially in terms of width.
Whether you’re on-board the lace-to-toe train or just want to watch some great boots roll by, there’s something on this list calling your name.
1) Red Wing: Lineman
If you’re looking for a pair of budget boots, it’s hard to beat classic Red Wings. Their Lineman model is pretty straightforward as far as LTT boots go, and in my mind does a good job at minimizing and otherwise bulbous toebox. While the Lineman isn’t sleek by any means, the lacing design on these boots is definitely more eye catching than the shape of the vamp. They can be difficult to find the US, but luckily for us Gravity Pope has them for us just north of the border.
Available for $300 from Gravity Pope.
2) Sugar Cane Lone Wolf: Carpenter
Lone Wolf is a company known for their historically accurate repros, which is why their Carpenter boot is one of the most compelling options on the market. Not only is it made to look like the boots of the 1950’s using techniques and equipment appropriate to the time, but it even features vintage Cat’s Paw soles and heels from the era.
Available for $480 from History Preservation.
3) Danner: Vertigo Black Glace
It’s especially important to have a well-fitting boot when traction may be an issue, which is part of the reason hiking boots often sport lace-to-toe designs. Danner hiking boots are an icon, and not just because of their lacing patterns — their gusseted tongues and d-ring eyelets both help to spell what is indisputably “Danner.”
Available for $320 from Revolve Clothing.
4) Santa Rosa: Santa Rosa Boot
We’ve seen Santa Rosa products, and this one continues the trend of high-quality reproduction footwear. It may not be as cleanly constructed as some other boots on the market, or the other boots that Santa Rosa produces themselves, but that’s part of its charm–worn out midsoles, wonky stitching lines, and antique brass rivets. Each pair is sewn to a Biltrite half sole, which really helps to finish off the vintage look.
Available for $795 from HTC California.
5) John Lofgren: Donkey Puncher
The reproduction boot train continues, this time with a pair from John Lofgren, one of the leaders in the workwear boot repro industry. Unlike some of the previous models on this list, this one is is immaculate. To some, this isn’t an attractive prospect considering it’s a workboot, but to others the idea of starting with a beautifully constructed boot and then wearing it into the ground is half the fun.
Available for $870 from Self Edge.
Plus One – Feit: Arctic Hiker
Feit is an interesting beast. On one hand, their boots are simple, but on the other hand they’re some of the most complicated and stylized on the market. That’s part of what makes them so divisive, and while a lot of us might not be willing to shell out nine-hundred bucks for a boot that would stand out if worn everyday, others are just happy to add it to their collection.
Available for $900 from Ssense.