The issue with shoes sitting on the shelf for too long is not with the leather as that is easily remedied with conditioning. If I recall correctly, the issue is with the amount of time the shoe has been off the last and how it holds its shape. There were a bunch of posts a few months ago on the flexing and bowing of the quarters that many see with AE shoes along with the various things that exacerbate this. If I am remembering it right, the amount of time the shoe has been on a shelf was one of those factors.
Makes sense, thanks. I'll keep it in mind.