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Streching Shoe Widths

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I purchased some shoes recently which are a tad tight. What is the best way to stretch a shoe's width?

Lockey2k
post #2 of 13
get one of those shoe strechers, it will last a lifetime.
post #3 of 13
Yeah, if you want to do it yourself, either use a stretcher or shoe trees that barely fit in the width (be sure they're not the kind that end halfway up the forefoot and make a line where they stop). You can spray the insides with a water/alcohol solution first to promote stretching. IMO it's better to do this than just wear them because your foot can stretch them in an ugly way, usually by making an "outdent" where your little toe is. A stretcher or tree will do a cleaner job of it.

Or take them in and have them stretched by a pro.
post #4 of 13
I have one of those shoe stretcher thingies (width only). It's the very sturdy german oak and steel model around $40. It applies much more force than any shoe tree. I did them over a week. It wasn't working for a while until I got the leather quite wet. Once the leather got soaked, they stretched out quickly. I'd start slowly.

Stretching shoes isn't something I'd plan to do if the toebox was the problem. The width of the midsole doesn't change, and my toes didn't and still don't fit on it so well. The shoes just aren't as comfortable as they should be.

On a pair of boots (polo holland), the stretchers worked to increase the volume under the vamp very well. This operation was well worth the price alone. So if you have loafers or something with midfoot volume issue, this is the ticket.
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
The shoe fits snug without socks and super snug with thin socks. I'd like to stretch it to be comfortable with thin socks. Is that doable?

How much does a cobbler charge to stretch a pair of shoes?
post #6 of 13
Go to a cobbler. This is not an expensive operation...
post #7 of 13
I went to cobbler to stretch a pair of cordovan longwings, but I was concerned to see that he sprayed a light film of alcohol ON the shoe (as opposed to inside it) to promote stretching. the finish definitely looks different now....did this guy ruin my shoes?
post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by mr chorizo View Post
I went to cobbler to stretch a pair of cordovan longwings, but I was concerned to see that he sprayed a light film of alcohol ON the shoe (as opposed to inside it) to promote stretching. the finish definitely looks different now....did this guy ruin my shoes?
interesting. I have tried the alchohol spray on a pair of calfskin but not on cordovan. I didnt see any changes in color, etc. Could the different look be attributed to the cordovan stretching and not the alchohol itself? I would presume that its now a lighter color. Post pics!
post #9 of 13
for me, the changes were more in the luster and finish of the leather...they started out as very shiny and you could really see the color changes in the creases. now they are more matte and less "mirror like." Will try and post pics tonight; I mean the shoes don't look horrific but definitely different from when I dropped them off.
post #10 of 13
I'd bet that some serious time brushing them would bring back most of the luster.



Unless you've already done that.
post #11 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by lockey2k View Post
I purchased some shoes recently which are a tad tight. What is the best way to stretch a shoe's width?

Lockey2k

I'd be careful, I had a pair of suede loafers stretched by a cobbler and they went from looking brand new to looking worn even though the leather itself wasn't visibly damaged. It's hard to describe but you can just tell the shoes have been stretched out and it doesn't look so good to me.
post #12 of 13
^^ That's good to know; I had a pair of suede bals stretched by my cobbler this week. They look great, but still fit snugly so I was wanting to stretch them more. I may just live with them as is since they still look as good as new.
post #13 of 13
I don't put a whole lot of stocking in stretching.
While it does work, to a degree, Ive never seen a drastic difference that suddenly made the shoes more than marginally more comfortable.

sometimes, you just have to accept that a certain last or shoe is not for you (see: C&Js 360 last)
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