I can't speak to customer service, but with the countless posts on this thread pointing out defects in AE shoes (not to mention the numerous examples I have seen myself with the dreaded 'bowing" issue), I have a hard time believing Alden QC is lacking in comparison. I own far more AEs than Aldens, btw - just to forestall the inevitable hater accusations.
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Allen Edmonds Appreciation Thread - reviews, pictures, sizing, etc... - Page 1654post #24796 of 707377/12/13 at 8:06ampost #24797 of 707377/12/13 at 8:12amQuote:Originally Posted by Winston S.
I agree that Alden's #8 is special, but the QC for Alden shows does not seem as good and I don't think the customer service with them is as good as AE, i.e., Alden may not remake your shoe if there is a manufacturer's defect if it is within their QC standards, which from what I have seen is not as stringent as AE.
His opinion on the new burgundy cordovan is his own and some people do like the new AE burgundy cordovan.
+1 I like the new AE burgundy (like the old AE burgundy, too by the way, and also like the Alden #8. Maybe I'm too easily satisfied... I am, admittedly, a bit of a shell cordovan nut). See my "new" burgundy patriots:Quote:
Agree on Alden vs. AE shell. However, EEric22, I generally recommend a shoe rotation of at least 3, and ideally 5+ pair of dress shoes. This greatly lengthens the life cycle of the shoe, since they can completely dry, and are not subjected to multiple wears per week. If going to shell so early in your dress shoe buying means you will be wearing the shoes 3+ times per week, I'd recommend against it. However, I do recommend you at least try a pair of shell shoes. Though expensive, I feel they are worth it.Quote:
Congrats - enjoy!
Today's shoes: burgundy shell Rancourt boat shoes to match my burgundy shell Ashland wallet (casual Friday and all that)post #24798 of 707377/12/13 at 8:24ampost #24799 of 707377/12/13 at 8:43amQuote:
I have three of them and find them to be of good quality. For $64 bucks, it's a pretty good deal. They are my go-to belts. The leather is nice and soft, not like some of those belts that feel too tough.post #24800 of 707377/12/13 at 8:53ampost #24801 of 707377/12/13 at 9:24amQuote:
Depends on the environment the shoes are stored in, but generally I wouldn't worry. Give them a healthy treatment with leather conditioner prior to storage if you have any concerns.Quote:
Perhaps I'm the outlier, but Alden has treated me very well. I've sent two pairs back for service and both times they called me right away to go over the issues. Both times I got my shoes back within a few weeks, no charge, and they threw in some shoe bags to boot. No fuss or hassle from Alden. To be fair, AE has also provided very good customer service.Quote:Quote:Originally Posted by RogerP
If we could run the numbers, I would expect to find that AE produces more shoes than Alden. Hence, I would expect to find more pairs with manufacturing defects.post #24802 of 707377/12/13 at 9:37ampost #24803 of 707377/12/13 at 9:45ampost #24804 of 707377/12/13 at 9:46ampost #24805 of 707377/12/13 at 9:48ampost #24806 of 707377/12/13 at 10:04ampost #24807 of 707377/12/13 at 10:34amQuote:post #24808 of 707377/12/13 at 10:46amQuote:Originally Posted by RogerP
QFTpost #24809 of 707377/12/13 at 11:51ampost #24810 of 707377/12/13 at 12:02pmQuote:Quote:Originally Posted by kentyman
Here we go again. I got my third round of Merlot McAllister firsts, and am still seeing problems. As before, they have the same obvious ridges, and the pinking/stitching is a little wonky again:
Additionally, the back left panel on the right shoe looks quite different, as if it's a darker, rougher leather that isn't able to sit correctly:
And finally, and I think worst of all, the inside leather of the left shoe is wavy in such a way that they bow out off of my foot:
I'm pretty discouraged. Should I just give up trying to get a pair of firsts that I'm comfortable width? Which of these problems would y'all find unreasonable? Is this toe cap ridge here to stay?
Any words of wisdom would be welcome.
I have the same ridge issue with Bourbon McAllister firsts as well. I wore my first pair a few times, not thinking too much about it, but then looking at pictures of other McAllisters on their website and elsewhere, I thought it was a defect and hoped that they could replace it with a pair without the ridges. If not, I could live with it. Customer Service asked me to send them in for inspection. I received a new pair (excellent customer service) and it had the same ridges. Here's photos of mine:
This is what Customer Service had to say after I e-mailed them about this:Quote:
This must be the way that these shoes are burnished, since these were a special inspected shoe by our quality control manager. I have seen what you are talking about and it is not clearly defined on the website picture. I apologize for that. I know they are darker around the wing tip and cap toe of the shoes. This is the way these shoe are manufactured. The tight parts around the last show more definition of color especially on these bourbon shoes since they are manufactured from a walnut to bourbon color through burnishing.
So they say this is how it is, though I don't recall the Merlot McAllister display model in the San Francisco AE store having the ridge. I was going to buy a Merlot pair during their Rediscover America sale later, but now need to consider whether I can live with the ridge. The pictures on the website don't show this, nor the various pictures I've seen elsewhere.
I'll probably end up keeping my pair as I love the Bourbon color. However with yours I'd be especially bothered by the darker leather, and possibly the wave/wrinkle. If you have the time to wait for a replacement and are willing to live with the ridges (they may not be noticeable from a distance, and likely others won't notice it), then exchange them for another pair, and hopefully the replacement won't have the other defects, or at least a significantly lower degree that's acceptable. They're handmade out of natural materials after all.
I'm discouraged by the quality control of AE. I'm waiting for a third pair of Walnut Strand firsts due to quality issues of the first 2 pairs. The first pair had a dark ridge across one of the caps, and the cap itself was darker than the other and rest of shoe. The second pair had a noticeable wrinkle on the outside of one shoe (opposite side of the wave of your shoe), and the AE store assistant manager said he's seen worse. I also had a pair of Bourbon McAllisters in a different size that had one shoe where the finish was lighter than the other. I've also tried on pairs of Strands and McTavishes where the outside ankle collar of the right shoe feels high, such that I feel it hitting my ankle bone. It's not bad and you get used to it after a while, and SAs say that they can soften that part for you. It could also be my feet and ankles aren't perfect/symmetrical, but odd it's coming up now and not other pairs purchased in the past. Maybe with the company's growth some of the employees aren't as precise in making the shoes, and QC don't have time to inspect as many, and/or are willing to let more pass to satisfy demand?
AE's customer service is great though, and are more than happy to exchange for new pairs or offer a refund. Maybe I'm just too picky. Actually I am picky! But when you're spending $300+ on a pair of shoes, I want to be satisfied. I don't expect perfection as the shoes are hand-made out of natural materials, but they should be near-perfect as firsts. Seconds at a lower price is another thing.
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