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Bootiful celebrity-inspired winter styles

By DAISY SAMPSON [email protected]

Diamonds may be a girl’s best friend but shoes and boots are the cornerstone of all wardrobes and the winter months are a perfect excuse to add to your collection.

There has been a long tradition of women who famously adore their shoes, admittedly Imelda Marcos perhaps had taken it a little far and the revelation that Vogue stylist Anna Dello Russo has had to buy an entirely separate apartment for her 4,000 pair collection makes even the most hardened of Jimmy Choo fanatics look tame in comparison.

However, I know many people who simply can’t resist being well heeled for all occasions and seasons and the winter 2010/2011 season is proving to be a joyous one not only for shoe lovers but also for those who have yet to be converted.

Wet weather and chilly temperatures mean that strappy sandals are pushed to the back of the cupboard to make way for winter’s best footwear solution – boots – and this season there is something for everyone.

For the practically minded among us, there is of course the UGG and the thousands of styles that have grown from this Australian phenomenon that we all thought would be a flash in the pan fad but has turned out to be one of the most enduring trends of the noughties.

Rihanna stylish in her over-the-knee boots.
Rihanna stylish in her over-the-knee boots.

These may not be the sexiest boots you will ever own but they are sure to be some of the warmest and most comfortable and the classic short leg boot, now available in a myriad of colours, is a great daily choice for millions. 

Stars who love this look include Jennifer Love-Hewitt, Cameron Diaz and Gwyneth Paltrow, while the Kates of Moss and Hudson not only don pairs themselves but also dress their little ones in this hit boot.

Imitation versions of these boots are now available all across the high street and are usually a fraction of the price meaning that those of us with less cash to be able to splash can get in on the action.

But beware, not all sheepskin lined cosy boots are going to cut the mustard. A friend of mine (who will remain anonymous to protect her fashion identity) recently attended a house party in a pair of woolly slippers, the type that you buy from the pottery shops across the Algarve. 

I will simply state that this is NOT acceptable and she was suitably reprimanded by her boyfriend, who felt she had brought fashion shame on them as a couple (the word ashamed was muted several times), her friends who told her to pull herself out of her Waynetta Slob phase and her sister who noted that it wouldn’t have been so bad if they had at least been clean.

Eccentric Madonna rarely goes unnoticed.
Eccentric Madonna rarely goes unnoticed.

While UGG boots may be the cheat’s way to hitting the right fashion notes, this season the more shoe savvy of us will be looking for a pair of knee high or preferably over the knee boots to sport this winter.

Wearers will have to mentally get over the whole pirate image or Pretty Woman analogies because by teaming these boots with your skinny jeans or with a midi skirt this is a spot on trend.

These boots are not for the faint-hearted so if you are not willing to go all the way and over the knee then look for a style that hits just below or for a happy medium pair with lapels that can be turned up or down to suit.

Go for killer heels for a traffic stopping look or flats to emulate the riding boot if you are not keen on getting your heels stuck in the calçada, either way you will be making a strong winter 2010/2011 statement.

For inspiration, look to fashion chameleons Rihanna and Madonna or to British starlet Leona Lewis who have all been able to pull off the look effortlessly.

Whatever your style, winter is the time to put your best foot forward in a pair of great boots, so what are you waiting for?