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Shoe D’Jour: Sorel Caribou Snow Boots

Sludgy NYC crosswalk post-blizzard.

Last year, I bought my first pair of snow boots. They are cute, shearling with toggle closures. But when I bought them I didn’t know what I was doing. First off, they’re not waterproof, secondly… for some god-only-knows-why reason they did not line the toes. So after a month of wearing them in Chicago, it became clear that I still had cold toes. That’s the most important part to keep warm!

This year I grilled New Yorkers about snow boots… it’s warmer than Chicago but there is a lot, a lot, a lot of snow in New York now. It’s really going to be a snowy winter. So I went ahead and got a second pair of boots that are waterproof AND keep my toes warm.

Finding snow boots that aren’t ugly is a huge challenge. There are some ugly snow boots out there. Really ugly. I looked at the Sorel Caribous last year, but thought they were too heavy, but like the old school look about them. After seeing them in the J. Crew catalog, it sealed it for me. I had to get these. They’re relatively inexpensive at $110, and they’re ok looking, they go go along the whole duck boot trend this year that I love.

I took them to Germany with me and they’re perfect. Granted, I thought they’d be smaller, and I feel kind of like a robot when I’m walking with these giant boots. And my first instinct about them being heavy was right, they are heavy. But my feet have never been toastier. I tried wearing my regular boots in the Bavairan snow, but that led me to spending 4 days in bed with a cold.

I’m glad I got these, especially now that New York is encased in snow.

UPDATE: I just got home last night, and WOW post blizzard, NY is crazy. I’m so glad I got these, because every intersection looks like the lower left photo.

jennineShoe D’Jour: Sorel Caribou Snow Boots

Comments 38

  1. Nickie Frye

    I don’t think I could do it. Being from California (the part that doesn’t snow) I am such a wimp when it comes to this stuff. Walking, DRIVING, or otherwise maneuvering around in the snow, & wearing snow-appropriate gear are all unheard of for me. I think you did well with the boots, though I’m obviously not an expert on this matter. ;)

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      jennine

      haha, well, i said the same thing when i heard the word ‘snow boots’ but you really do need them, because toes are always in fashion!

  2. Tamara

    I recently moved from Spain to snowy Germany and… Ok, I must confess in the beginning I was trying to avoid snow boots but after slipping on the street the other day (and totally falling on my face in front of the bus station!) I am reconsidering them again ;)

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      jennine

      oh my god, the winter i spent in germany i totally ate it several times. it became a big fear that i would break a bone! now i won’t even walk on ice, even with special boots!

  3. Elle

    I’ve been seeing these pop up everywhere lately. I got a similar pair last year but all black and no separated front before the pleating from Merrell. So not my most fashionable shoes, but I’m definitely greatful in the snow in the Northeast (I got to school in New England).

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      jennine

      haha well, if you’re in new england you definately need snow boots! but i dont’ know if there is even a fashionable snow boot, is htere?

  4. Carly

    Sooo hard to find snowboots that are cute! I think you have done it!
    I HATE spending money on such a practical purchase…probably why I don’t own a snowboot (uggs dont count – warm but NOT waterproof) I am stuck in 4 feet of snow today…would be a good day to own a pair.
    Not owning them, gets me out of shoveling tho!
    C

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      jennine

      ooh are the fur lined ones waterproof? maybe i’ll get another pair next year. who knows if these are right for new york.. it’s always such a tossup when it’s the first winter!

  5. Melina

    You are so right about ugly snow boots! I grew up in New England and generally if a boot is functional, it’s really not easy on the eyes. I do like these though, they look comfy and warm!!

    xx Melina

  6. WendyB

    How I hate the snow. Especially the New York snow that quickly turns to gray slush. Waterproof is a must — preferably without holes for laces that let slush in.

  7. Marissa

    I’ve been looking for the right pair of snow boots, too. I’ve been traipsing around in my rainboots and heavy socks for a year now, and while they keep me nice and dry, they do absolutely nothing to keep me warm! I like the caribous a lot, but I’m scared they’ll be too bulky-looking. Maybe if you did an outfit post with them… (hint, hint). :)

  8. Laura Connell

    I just wrote a post about Sorel’s myself! These babies are Canadian-made and we know winter like few other countries do! I take non-waterproof “winter” boots as a personal insult! What are they trying to do, give me frostbite? You could lose your toes! Anyway, I am also thinking of grabbing a pair of Sorel’s and embracing their clunkiness. We do what we must in the snow and slush. Sometimes we have to play around with our fashion boundaries to keep ourselves safe and warm :)

  9. Aida

    haha, I know exactly what you mean about feeling like a robot when you put the snow boots on. After tons of time looking on the net for a pair that was fashionable yet functional I finally settled on a pair of Kamik’s Pearson boots. They are similar to the Sorels although I got them in a darker brown. They arrived on xmas eve so luckily just inthe nick of time (i live in nyc too!) They have totally made my days of traipsing through the snow a ton easier .Yes they are a bit heavy (subway stairs, ugh) but they’re great and I’m looking forward to getting tons of use out of them this season.

  10. liz

    I wish I had seen this post prior to Sunday! I could barely step out of my apartment, and like a dumbass tried to venture to midtown for work on Monday. Snow boots are def. my next purchase now

  11. lisa

    These Sorels are cute! I normally don’t like the look of them, but the ones you got are making me reconsider.

    I bought snowboots last year from a Canadian company called Blondo. They look like normal tall flat black leather boots, except that the leather is waterproof and the inside is fleece-lined and the boots have a much better tread on them than trendier boots.

  12. Nubiasnonsense

    I only like the first day of snow and then it’s yucky sludge! These snow boots are really cute and traditional looking but I totally know what you mean about being able to find a nice pair. Someone should get inspired by all the ugly ones and make an ultra chic line lol

    Hope you feel better and got around to making your snow homie ;-)

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  16. Cate

    i’ve been in Boston for 2 years and i still dont’ have snow boots. or rain boots. i basically fail at boots. it’s not my fault though. trinidad’s weather doesn’t really call for excessive footwear. but i’m motivated to find good fashionable snow boots when i get back into the US.

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  22. ...love Maegan

    yeah, these are definitely the best of all worlds …I have the same pair …which I’ve had now for at least 10 years {though I don’t go to the snow often and you know it doesn’t snow here either} but still, I’ll have them forever.

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  25. tricia

    i have a pair of sorel boots too and you’re right, they are heavy. but they are hella warm. i live in ontario and we have similar temps to parts of new york and they have taken me through many cold days and even some very cold nights, like styling music video shoots in the middle of a forest way up north…

    the only downside is i have to tie the laces loose otherwise i get blisters just above my heel, which is so annoying (and painful!). either that or wear two pairs of socks.

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