ByPicardVINE VOICETOP 1000 REVIEWERon 29 October 2010
Prior to buying my pair of Hunters, I had always assumed that wellies 'were' wellies - just boots which only differed in style or material to a loose degree. As per usual, my stubbornness was proved wrong when I decided to push the boat out and get a pair for my rainy ventures into town. Oh, and for the rarity we do actually have snow here! (Note: Foul weather not included)
Though I'm still perplexed as to why these are 'the' thing to wear at Glastonbury (lets face it, its just a place for girls to be seen anyway! Don't hurt me....), I can honestly now appreciate why they're cost that little bit more than your standard PVC products. The quality all round is fantastic! Upon taking them out the nice box, greeted with its own carry handle, you'll get a waft of that lovely natural smell of rubber that is supple, but still offers good support to the whole boot. You just know from holding it that these things, which are vulcanised, are that bit more special. The sole is also very good - standing up well to rough surfaces, though I dare say that they're fair better on more natural ground where they belong.
The most important thing is that they're comfortable and fit 'really' well. How often have you tried on someone else wellies and they either feel stiff and awkward, or generally misshaped? These Hunters on the hand really hug your feet, making it quite sad taking them off. With regards to fit, it should be known that these "Short" models have a slightly different cut to the standard "Tall" variants. The Short products have a wider calf width, and I believe the heel is also slightly wider too, as they're designed to be taken on and off quickly.
In terms of sizing, there is something to definitely think about when ordering. Normally I'll get away with Size 10 shoes if they're wide, since I myself have quite wide feet, and thats with normal socks. Obviously different brands vary... My Converse are 9's but they're a bit tight, yet my Adidas Stan Smith's of the same size feel too spacious! I ordered the Size 9 Hunters and they're absolutely perfect - not only because they have a lovely wide area at the toes, but they leave plenty of room for thick socks. I would therefore suggest that you shouldn't worry about going for a size down than what you're used to.
On a final pointer, I've noticed how the colours of these wellies on websites and brochures tend to differ slightly from real life. I got the 'Dark Olive Green' style, and they're definitely a touch darker than in photo's. This isn't a problem, I just thought I'd highlight it.
I'll definitely say that these boots are much more, as a friend put it, 'socially acceptable' than other wellies (blurb for 'they look well good'), and that as a guy I don't give a second thought to wearing them out and about. But they're a treat when going for walks in the woods or anywhere that would otherwise ruin normal shoes, and for that I'd be more than happy to pay the extra bit for these Hunters than other brands.
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