By Ralph Stuart
It’s a known fact: The woman who has everything can always use a new pair of boots. And the woman who does everything will want a pair of Fairfax & Favor Imperial Explorer boots from Hound & Hare. Elegant and stylish, these English-made knee-high boots are fashionable as well as functional—serving equally well in the field, in the saddle and around town.
They are handcrafted of waxed Spanish leather and fitted with a waterproof, breathable membrane. A full-length zipper—operated with a stylish leather tassel—and scalloped boot pulls make for easy on-off. Double stitching on the spine adds strength and detailing. The boot’s sleek lines and tailored ankle offer a flattering look, and a padded insole and Vibram outsole provide comfort and grip.
It took little leg twisting to get my girlfriend, Trina, to wear-test a pair. There were plenty of “oohs” and “ahs” when the box was opened, and then other complimentary words once the boots were pulled on. During the next couple of weeks, Trina wore the boots extensively in a variety of terrain, commenting on the leg-hugging support, stable platform and sure grip even on rocks and slippery surfaces. They were comfortable enough for all-day wear and stylish enough for evenings out. The hardest part was getting her to give them up—immediately upon which I was informed that she needed a new pair of boots . . . .
Imperial Explorers are available in Mahogany (pictured) or a lighter Oak in US sizes 5 to 11. They come in a Regular fit or a Sporting fit, which adds 3cm to 4cm in the calf for a more “athletic” (read: full-figured) cut. Price: $500. From Hound & Hare.