Yeah, I'm contemplating returning the ones I got with the blotches for $379 and paying the $200 more for firsts through a custom offer. It's also possible I should size down from 8.5D to 8E, but I'm unsure without trying on both. Wish Nordstrom had E widths I could try on.
Nordstroms will do something more for you. Call the shoe manager and ask him to check his storewide inventory on the sizes you want to try on. They will make that extra effort to actually pull inventory from any store in the country so that you can come in locally to try the item on (whether it be shoes, suits, or anything). Don't give up.
A few days back I was asking if the Aberdeens that I bought off of eBay might fit. They are a 10B and fit pretty well. I am wearing a 10C in my Strands and AE 5ths. I think the soft leather allows for a little more comfort. I could possible go a little longer but I think wider would have been a problem. I really like the look for a casual shoe with jeans and khakis. Here's a picture before I added some conditioner which took care of a any discoloration. I think I got a fabulous deal for $79 including shipping as they look brand new.
Yes, that is outstanding. Good catch for both size, fit, and price.
Thanks for the encouragement, Doc. I am due for my exam next month and can't wait. I have been blessed with great doctors in Montana. If you ever get here around July, I'll leave the light on for you after the sunset at 10:30 pm :)
As you and others may have discovered, I am a bit of a novice still learning about the AE shoes that I purchased years ago (and recently). But the AE Longbranch and Dalton boots in Cafeskin has a great light brown I like - and although I understand the calfskin may be more forgiving in adapting to my feet, they may have to be cared for more than the shell version. But as you say, if the shell tends to darken - then I guess my love affair with the calfskin remains ongoing.
No Bravo Zulu for me- I received my McTavish 2nds today and they have a 1/4" gash on the driver's side fender. The size was off too. I'm always an 11D and I think a 10.5 would be better. My other AEs are on a 1 (511) last and these are a 5 (65) last which I see is the longest last in AE's arsenal.
Looks like I've gotta say goodbye.
Sadly, I have to pay for shipping both ways because I'm stationed overseas and can only receive packages via USPS. Bummer.
You have a good picture of it - and before you pay for any return, may I suggest you privately email the photo to Kirby at the Hangerproject? I have spoken to his staff several times, and they have some great products that can vastly improve on the gash - where it can barely be noticed.
And, I am also reminded of my father who (like you) was stationed overseas in three wars (WW1, WW2, and Korea) - and when I opened all of his military trunks after he passed on - I discovered a treasure trove of leather goods - blemishes and all - from the times he served around the world. I would not trade them for anything.
Your own story of being stationed overseas may not seem like a journal ready to pass on - but it will be a wonderful story for your children and grandchildren to say your shoes were delivered to the far side of the planet at a time when you anticipated some relief from the day to day routine of serving your country - and you found one shoe that needed extra tender care to make it "right".
I spent nearly two hours the other day on one shoe, a Sanford, making the effort to save it. What drove me to stay with it was that I wanted to learn "how to do it". My journey of saving a leather shoe is nothing like I have ever done in my professional life.
I encourage you to rethink returning them for now - and explore the remedies available to help this shoe along the way. I have seen the "before photo" and I can wait for the "after photo".