Has anyone ever taken a tall pair of boots to a show repair shop and had elastic gussets inserted? Was it successful and did it cost a fortune? I have a pair of boots from my thinner days that I would like to be able to wear. I cannot find any boots with an 18 1/2" calf and can't spend hundreds on custom.
I am not plus sized, but I am very familiar with this problem. I'm 5'1", size 6 foot, with a 15" calf, so I'm a 6 XXW short. I've also asked about this before, and the answer is it's pretty affordable. I seem to remember people quoting amounts in the $50 range, depending on area. I bought a used pair of tall boots that had been heavily modified to fit someone similarly shaped, and they still look nice, IMO. They are certainly working for me and my budget right now since I cannot afford custom. You just need to find a cobbler in your area and get a quote.
There are tall boots out their that go up to 19. I've done a TON of searching. My calves are 21. X.x They don't even look that big, HELL everytime I go to a tack shop, they look at my calves and say of course we have ones that will fit you. And then they're surprised when they don't.
I've never had it done on my boots, but I have taken mine in to be shortened by a cobbler. I was expecting it to be prohibitively expensive, but it was only $30 even though they had to redo part of the zipper in the shortening process. They looked lovely when done. Find a good cobbler and take them in for a quote- a good cobbler is basically like a boot wizard!
If you end up wanting a new pair..Fuller Fillies is a UK based equestrian apparel company that happens to offer extra wide width tall field AND dress boots that fit 17-20" calves! They're kind of steep at about $270 new direct from FF..but they have a Facebook page (Fuller Fillies Pre-Loved) where you can find them cheaper and sometimes you can find a good deal on eBay. I have some half chaps from FF (didn't want to cough up the money for the tall boots yet lol) and they are really nice quality too :) Extra Wide boots for Riders with large calves - Fuller Fillies
Have you tried a pair of Men's Balmoral Hunter boots?? I have a pair and LOVE THEM! They will go up to a size 20 calf and adjustable. I have been using them all winter and they are warm/waterproof and have good support as well... I even ride in them :) I love the extra width as I can tuck in my pants/jeans to keep them clean. They are expensive but totally worth the cost since they are so versatile!