I purchased my first (and only) pair of duck boots while living in Boston during the 2015 snow storms because that’s what I noticed that everyone was wearing on their walk to work. It seemed like everyone had the same idea, actually, because they immediately went on back order and I wasn’t able to start wearing them until the following winter.
While I understand that leather boots take time to break in, I cannot express how uncomfortable I found these boots. It honestly seemed like the reason they received their name came down to the way that they force their wearer to walk like a duck. The other problem that I had was that my feet would sweat and then freeze, which meant that long walks were still uncomfortable when I finally broke the boots in.
Winters of grudgingly wearing these boots later, I found myself eyeing a leftover skein of Valley Yarns Amherst and remembering a gift that I made for my dad several holiday seasons ago. His knit insoles prevented his feet from sweating and getting cold, perhaps that’s all I needed!
Hikes and dog walks later, it’s safe to say that it worked. In the interest of helping others keep their feet warm, I’m sharing what I did:
Shoe Insoles Pattern
- 100-150 yards of 100% wool (or alpaca) worsted weight
- 6mm hook or needles
- Place your boots on a piece of paper and draw a square around them that’s a 3-4 inches larger on all sides.
- CO until your stitch count lines up end to end with your square.
- Knit/Crochet until your square until it fills the square that you made around your boots. Note: It’s ok if the square ends up being a little bigger or smaller. Gauge is not critical because we will be cutting the square.
- Gently felt the square. Note: It does not need to be perfectly felted, the square will continue to felt as you wear your boots.
- Lay your boot’s insoles on top of the square and cut around them.
- Slide them into your boots and enjoy!