Top positive review
18 people found this helpful
Cute form and Docs function! <3
on July 30, 2015
I haven't worn Dr. Martens since I was in my twenties. It wasn't that I disliked them, or anything. It just never happened that I bought any, for one reason or another. Perhaps cost. I admittedly love getting a good deal. And I got a great deal on these boots to the tune of $60 + free two day shipping. Okay, okay I am done doing my "look what I found!" bragging. :-)
I had a number of pairs of Docs in my youth. Boots, oxfords and wingtips. They were heavy, they were sturdy, they took a smidge of effort to get perfectly comfy to my foot and then they were golden for hard wear for years upon years. I was a stompy-clompy teen and young person in these boots. I wore them to work in restaurants and on deliveries and stocking stores. They were tough and reliable.
These Triumph 1914 boots are a little different from the Docs of old, which relied on heavy-duty, utilitarian and classic features. Yes, Docs have catered more to fashion and less to function in some of their new shoes and these Triumphs are no different. However, after carefully inspecting and wearing these boots I have to say that I think Dr. Martens struck a good balance of form and function with the Triumph 1914.
-The same classic sole is present. Comfy, expected, welded on and stitched up as usual. GOOD!
-The same metal lace eyes are there. GOOD!
-The stitching all looks even and well-placed. GOOD!
-The leather is of good quality and cut. Excepting the where the leather is stretched across the cap toe and the heel, which have structural supports, this leather *is* a lot softer than any Docs I have owned. It does not, however, feel cheap. PRETTY GOOD!
-The lining-- I've never had lined Docs and this is a thin flannel. It is a pretty pastel pink/blue/green plaid that coordinates with the cool pink eyelets which show when you peel the boot shaft down to wear it in the shorty-cute style. It looks good so far, but if I was mean to these shoes it might tear or pull off from the leather as it is sewn only along the very edges of the boot shaft and the strip up the back. COULD BE BETTER!
-Ribbon laces! These look adorable! They offer a softness to the rough and tumble look of combat boots. I love them, but it's good the boot comes with plain old laces, too. Please note: I searched on amazon and found replacements when searching for "ribbon shoe laces". There are some supposedly made by Dr. Martens. (I may grab some in blue and pink just cause I am kinda in love with this ribbony look!) ADORABLE! (the ribbons, that is) and GOOD! (the standard boot laces)
-Fold-over style. I wasn't sure I would like this. I had a pair of mid-calf Converse that were the same way but for some reason I just never liked them down. These, however, look great folded. The plaid lining and the pink eyelets are a very cute and girly touch.
Fit can be tricky, especially with European sizing and with buying online. Although I cannot guarantee my suggestion will help you I can offer my experience as follows:
For reference I have a wide foot that can fit in a B-width if the cut is right. I have thinnish ankles and mediumish calves. I am not a skinny lady. Pretty "normal" wearing usually an 8-10 in clothes. I pretty consistently wear a 7.5, although sometimes I can get away with a 7 if the shoe is wide and boxy-toed. For the Triumph 1914 (and all my past Docs shoes) I chose 5 F (M) UK / 7 B (M) US shoe. Docs seem to run maaaaybe a 1/2 size big. So, since I usually wear a 7.5 US, I chose the 7 US from Docs, AKA 5 UK. The shoes may be snug, but that is a good thing. Stretch them and break them in (as I mention down below at the end of the review) and these shoes will perfectly conform to your feet!
So: I wear 7.5 US. I got 5 UK / 7 US boot from Dr. Marten.
Docs How-To make 'em comfy!:
-Before you wear them rub 'em down with saddle soap, leather conditioner or something to protect and soften the leather. I use Fiebing's Saddle Soap. It is cheap and it works. Apply using a sponge, cloth or brush. Then buff-buff-buff across the leather. Be sure to remove or avoid your laces- especially the pretty ribbony ones! "Work" the leather with your fingers, gently stretching and bending it as you rub in the conditioner. You will notice a marked difference in the suppleness and condition of the leather, which is apparent when you move from the finished first boot to the comparatively dry and stiff second boot. (Please note: You may need to buff extra across exposed stitching, or use a brush/fingernail to get out the extra goo that can cling to little grooves in the threads.)
-Now that your boots have a fresh layer of protection and softening - if the heels of the boots feel stiff and rub your heel or ankle, take the boot heel (with your foot removed! :P) and gently bend it into the foot bed area. Repeat from slightly different angles. Repeat on second boot. Check how it makes the boot feel and check to make sure the leather and heel cup are not being damaged by this "working". Again this is a gentle smooshing, not a thoughtless hulk-smashing. Repeat as needed.
-Wear the boots around the house before you go for a long trek. Wear socks - maybe two pairs! (I wore a long knee sock and a short running shoe sock which provided extra cushioning at my heel bone but no extra padding in the boot shaft.) Make lots of silly stretching motions. Point your toes! Flex your feet! Do running squats!
-Repeat the above as needed until your boots are soft and comfy! Then make sure you use saddle soap on a regular basis to keep your boots nice.
I hope you love your Docs and that my review helps! :D
Side note: Be sure to check out my attached photos which show what the amazon marketplace is currently calling "Black". I show the boot in the normal upright position and folded over. It's really cute folded! It is the blackish boot with the pastel plaid lining. Please note that some have said their boots arrived as a forest green. I was hoping for this but it didn't happen. My boots are pretty-darned black. It might depend on the production run. I wish there was a guarantee, but without buying in person it seems hard to say what you might get.