Originally Posted by aportnoy
I just got a pair of these from Whoopee and they are quite remarkable. The antiquing is superb and the last shape is most elegant. I highly recommend them!
edit: I also want to add that they are a beautiful shade of dark oak.
Andrew, I got these too in 9.5. I quite like them, and they fit reasonably well (I always seem to have a little heel slippage with loafers, but with these it is minimal). However, I did notice one thing that surprised me a little: If you'll notice where the narrower strap on the inside of the shoe enters the slot in the wider strap, you'll see that the dark oak finish peters out so that a lighter color appears on the rest of that strap (the part lying under the wider strap). If there's no tension on the vamp at the strap location, this lighter color pretty well disappears, but it there is some tension from the instep on the straps, it will show for about 2 mm. That is, if yours are like mine! I think that this can be fixed by judicious use of some dark brown cream applied on the narrow strap for a short distance under the wider strap, but I was surprised to see this in a top-shelf shoe like a Grenson Masterpiece. It appears that the finisher simply treated the parts of the shoe that were most visible and didn't think to extend the finishing a little under the slot. It's certainly not a big deal, and I'm pleased with these shoes and grateful to Chris for making them available at a fabulous price, but I did find this oversight to be a little surprising.
BTW, for those of you who have both Grenson Masterpieces and C&J Handgrades, do you consider them to be equal in quality? The conventional wisdom I've seen on forums is that they are equal. What do you think?