Alix’s Closet How To :: Stretching Yer Shoes!

Ouchie, owie! Tight shoes. The bain of my existence! Back in the day I could rock a little vintage pointy pump, or a pair of shoes that were just a weeee bit too tight. But now? I have a zero tightness policy. I would rather wear a pair of shoes a size too big than suffer a pinchin’ on my big toe. Dare I admit I’m workin’ a bunion over there? Oh yes. I am.

So I was extremely delighted when i discovered this easy peasy way to give your shoes a little added stretch. And all you need is this:

No, there isn’t a magic stretching liquid in that little bag….it’s simply  a little zip lock baggie of water! Just you wait, it’ll all make sense.

Fill a ziplock bag of water. Don’t use a cheap one, you def want to make sure that the bag doesn’t leak. I used the little snack size bags because my shoes were little flats (and I wear a size 7…or 8 if i’m wanting a little more roooom!). Don’t fill the bags to overflowing, just 3/4 of the way is fine.

Now insert the baggie of water into your shoe, make sure it is down deep inside if that’s the area that is too tight. Mine are always a little snug across the toes. Again, do make sure that bag is sealed tightly!

Stick those shoeies in the freezer! Of course you should put the shoe in a plastic/paper bag first, to keep things clean (and you may want to warn family members so they don’t think you’re crazy for putting shoes in the freezer!). Now we let the ice freeze. Here’s the thing. Water expands as it freezes….and as the water expands inside the shoe, it will stretch the shoe with it! Genius!

It’s not a perfect system, but it worked for me. I would say I think it works best on leather shoes….i don’t know if I’d try it on boots. You kind of want a shoe that you can manipulate your zip lock baggie in easily. I think strappy sandals/heels, pointy toed pumps and flats like these are probably best. So, to recap!

    1. Fill two small ziplock bags 1/2-3/4 with water. Make sure they are sealed tightly!
    2. Insert them inside your shoes.
    3. Stick those shoes in a plastic bag and place them in the freezer.
    4. Leave inside the freezer until the water has completely turned to ice .
    5. Remove from freezer and  let thaw (approx 20 minutes). Don’t leave the ice in to melt completely or it could burst.
    6. Remove the ice baggies.
    7. Try on your shoesies and do the happy dance!

15 thoughts on “Alix’s Closet How To :: Stretching Yer Shoes!

  1. love this idea! any tips on how to stretch the calves of boots? Apparently since I have size 6.5 feet I am also supposed to have’s.skinniest.legs. With taller boots I sometimes find myself having to buy a size 8 just to get them to fit in the leg.
    oh jeez, my first world problems…

  2. Genius. Nay–SUPER GENIUS!

    I am the same way with shoes–comfy shoes rule! I have such an issue with shoes that seem fine when tried on in the store and then turn into horrible shoes of tightness doom when worn for a full day. I’m going to try this on a pair of shoes tonight!

    thanks, lady!

  3. Hello, do you think it would be wise to try the frozen water method with suede shoes? I bought a lovely pair of suede shoes at the sales and they were comfy enough at the shop but when I tried them on later at home they felt tight unfortunately I cannot take them back as they were a sale item. Grateful for any advice about stretching suede shoes. I have since learnt that it is better to buy shoes in the afternoon when feet tend to swell up.

    1. I think suede/leather stretch the easiest. I’m not an expert, but as long as you make sure the zip lock bags are sealed tightly, i think this method should work! GOOD LUCK!!

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