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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Thursday, April 17, 2014

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Say hello to fashionable cold-weather footwear and goodbye to blah winter boots.
Say hello to fashionable cold-weather footwear and goodbye to blah winter boots.
The Ahnu Tahoe.  (photo ahnu.com)
The Ahnu Tahoe. (photo ahnu.com)
Teva Vero WP Boot  (photo: backcountry.com)
Teva Vero WP Boot (photo: backcountry.com)

Give someone the boot this holiday season

Although we've only been teased with a sprinkle of snow, I take frozen precipitation as the cue to stash the open toes and high heels that pose danger beyond "slippery when wet" on icy walkways and slushed-over parking lots.

I have become resigned to wearing a pair of (let's face it) ugly, yet highly functional boots that keep my soles warm and my toes dry. These boots are all about practicality. There is not an inch of their brown, rubberized facade that says "fashion."

I then lug another pair of more aesthetically pleasing, "indoor" footwear for work to change into. In addition to the parka, hat, scarf and gloves ... it's just all a lot to schlep, especially when it's below zero and a blizzard has reared its blinding fury.

After surviving Milwaukee winters for 30-odd years, my footwear prayers have finally been answered. I got a Blogakkah/Christmlog gift that is changing my winter footwear attitude.

Teva and Ahnu kindly sent me one pair of boots each to try out: the Teva Vero and the Ahnu Tahoe.

My jaw hit the floor as I raised the covers to the over-sized boxes that housed footwear that has transformed my bootitude and wardrobe below my knees this winter. Sweet boots would be the perfect holiday gift for those still looking for something to stun the "active-ista" this gift-giving season. (That is, the active gal on-the-go who still likes to look stylin'!)

How have I been naïve to the marriage of technology and trendy design in the world of boots? My mind is blown that I no longer need to slosh through inches of accumulation in "moon boots" or "galoshes." I can glide into a boot that works just as hard to give me the coverage, protection and traction needed to navigate the Milwinterwonderland as it does to just plain "work it."

I tried out the Teva Vero in Gray Morning first. When I think of Tevas, I think of the exact opposite of a boot. Their strappy, athletic sandals and comfy flip-flops come to mind.

They must have trapped one of those flip-flops inside this great-looking boot, because as I slid my foot into the unbelievably light, mid-calf sleeve I released a pleasured, "Ahhhhhh."

Comfort does not begin to describe what is going on inside this boot. And check out the pic of me trashing my old boots. How killer is the look of this footwear?

Problem of dragging two pairs of footwear around all winter long? Solved! This boot has Teva's T.I.D.E. Seal waterproof membrane so you can trudge from your car to wherever you are going without sloppy socks or squishy tootsies.

They look equally great over or under pants/leggings or even with thick tights and a skirt.

The Vero comes in four neutral, fashionable shades. Trust me – you'll want at least three pairs of them because they are going to become your everyday go-to shoe. I not only am rockin' the Vero for work and errands, but I'm throwing them on for walking the dog first thing in the morning ... and am motivated to walk her a little longer in the freeze because each step is a bouncy, warm treat! I even wear them around the house as a slipper alternative. No – I am not exaggerating how comfortable these babies are.

Now, when the weather launches its nasty combo of moisture and freezing cold equating to snow and ice, it's time for the more hardy, more snow/sleet/slush/snain-oriented Ahnu Tahoe.

This boot will protect you from whatever Wisconsin weather tries to throw at your ten toes and tootsies. Tall and decorated with faux shearling, you'll feel like a Nordic princess rockin' these through snowy trudges. Try the white ones with an all-white winter ensemble for a true "Snow Princess" look. Or the black version with an all-black, body-conscious get-up for a more "Lara Croft," super-sexy, frozen tundra spy aura.

Safety first people! The Vibram sole provides much-needed traction for navigating 'Sconsin's icy sidewalks and roads. You can look chic and not slip in the Tahoe.

And no more excuses for not being active outdoors! You can take cold-weather hikes in these kicks! The Tahoe would also be perfect to attach to a pair of snowshoes enabling a killer cold/wet-weather outdoor workout! (Upcoming blog teaser: more on snowshoes to come in January!)

Armed with 200 grams of insulation and "eVent" waterproofing, you can trek through the winter wonderland in swanky style. And bonus: for a heavy-duty, all-wheel drive version of a boot, the Tahoe is still surprisingly light, super comfy and cozy for all-day wear.

Ditch toting multiple footwear changes this winter and give yourself or someone else the (fashionable and practical!) boot this holiday season. Keep their feet warm, dry and happy all Wisco' Winter long.

Here are some great places in the Milwaukee area to find the Tevas and Ahnus I'm rockin' this winter, plus many more stylish boot styles to get you through the season:

Teva retailers:

The Walking Company (Mayfair Mall)
2500 N. Mayfair Road, (414) 774-9255

The Walking Company (Brookfield Square)
95 N. Moorland Road, (262) 782-8313

Erehwon Outfitters, Bayshore Town Center
599 W. Glen Bay Ave., Glendale, (414) 332-9000

Ahnu retailers:

Erehwon Outfitters, Bayshore Town Center
599 W. Glen Bay Ave., Glendale, (414) 332-9000

Clearwater Outdoors
744 W. Main St., Lake Geneva, (262) 348-2420

Talkbacks

brunocarlson | Dec. 27, 2011 at 7:47 p.m. (report)

35104 I got my wife some crime Sorel. They are just as high but in various colors, not in ghetto white.

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baciami | Dec. 21, 2011 at 10:41 a.m. (report)

How much are they? Will we enjoy them as much as you if they aren't free?

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