Concur. I wear my Burgundy Belt with my Color #4 Aldens. I got lucky and got a pair of Alden demo belts in Color #8 and that matches Burgundy and Color #8 much better.
Just a quick update on my issue (stray burnishing on Walnut Strands) from a couple months back. I ended up dealing directly with AE customer service, and they put in a ticket to the factory requesting even burnishing on a new pair.
Well, I just received the new pair today and it is flawless - no random and dark burnishing marks on the side on one shoe but not the other. Very happy with this pair. It took a while to arrive, but AE got it right, and in this regard matches reality to expectation when it comes to customer service. Apparently the rude salesman that I had issues with was just a bad egg.
Thanks everyone for your help! Now I am wanting a few pairs in black to wear with suits.
Any style suggestions on the Park Avenue vs the Fifth Avenue?
I would reach out to them with a few pictures. They may suggest to have the pair sent to them and they could attempt to repair them and give you a discount for the trouble. They did that for a pair of mine that had uneven dying on the toe. Now it looks even better than usual because they refinished the entire shoe and the level of finishing was much better than any normal AE.
They also may just make you a new pair of shoes.
Part of what you pay is for customer service, so you should use it. They are great there and will do whatever they can to help you out.
Took out all my AE shoes to get a sense of what's missing/lacking. As you can tell, there are certain styles and colors I'm drawn to. I have some non-AE shoes that aren't pictured (Bally burgundy single monk strap, a few black oxfords from Magnanni and Bruno Magli). I also have one pair of AE (Walnut McAllister) that's currently away, and a Tan Dublin Long Branch GMTO in production.
I'm thinking to probably stick with what I have for a while to keep the shoe budget under control. My current wishlist (perhaps for this fall's RDA) is the MacNeil in Burgundy Cordovan and the Strand in Bourbon.
Sorry for the photo quality - night-time and weird apartment lighting don't lend themselves well to good photos.