I went to see the cobbler today, and he said that it's totally possible to narrow the shaft of boots (and will cost $40-$60), but there is one condition! The boots MUST have a zipper running the length of the shaft. This allows them to turn the boots inside out, use a machine to sew along the leather, and then hand sew up the lining. The boots I brought in (see picture) only have a zipper part way up the side, so he can't turn them inside out

At least now I know, and I'll be looking for boots with a full zipper rather than trying to find narrow boots since none of them seem to be narrow enough.

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