I just get aggravated with those who turn this forum into a bitch, moan and complain thread, when this is supposed to be an Allen Edmonds "APPRECIATION" thread! Appreciate what is good about the company, and the vastly positive things they are doing, which far outweigh the nit picking negatives I see for the most part here. I submit, that for the price, which will soon be $279 for a lot of great shoes for RDA (Strand among them) to $327 for the rest of the line for the most part during RDA, you can't get a better shoe bang for the buck.
But instead we get the constant flow of "my seconds have a welt gap of 1/8" and aren't completely closed, should I send them back or keep them", or "my $127 Patriots have a wrinkle, should I keep them" BS. Geez! They are seconds for a reason! The lion's share of first quality shoes are pretty damn nice, and no other company is even trying to make available the different sizes that AE is is offering for those with very small, very big or narrow or wide feet. So, I for one am saying Bravo, Allen Edmonds, keep up the good work, and keep striving for the improvements you are seeking.
This, so much this. That's why I think that the real question is whether AE is honest about what they say about the quality of their footwear, not whether they do this or that specific thing. And (unfortunately) goodyear welted generally is seen as "handmade" by "everyone". I think it would be very hard for AE to not be on that bandwagon if they want to keep selling shoes. Obviously their marketing will sell you "tradition" and "Made in USA" and "craftsmanship". That's about the only thing (except for image and name) that sells higher cost stuff to a broader audience nowadays, where everyone just wants cheap, cheap, cheap.
I for one APPRECIATE Allen Edmonds for their EEE shoes, when not many other people will even offer those online, AE even puts them in brick and mortar stores. Arguably not in Canada (unfortunately), but since they don't have their own stores here, we're at the mercy of local chains.
I APPRECIATE Allen Edmonds for having a Shoebank, where they sell 2nds. Many other big brands have "Outlet stores" that sell stuff cheaper but they don't tell you that it's 2nds or that they actually make runs with lower quality materials just for the outlets.