jvc44 thanks for the PSA on the Townley's, they are great and at $300 for shell an unbelievable deal. However seeing how I suffer from AEAD - Allen Edmonds Acquisition Disorder it may cost me more like $1,000 when it is all done, provided things go well.
And I had the same thought as well..... With CXL Bayfield:
About a year ago someone posted a picture of a burgundy shell Bayfield that was custom made (top):
And doing some digging found a post on AAAC from Dec 2009 where the CEO of AE said: "We haven't planned to bring the Bayfield back in shell cordovan at this point." So it sounds like at one time the Bayfield was actually available in shell.
Black calf Bayfields fit me pretty well, slightly snug at the ball of the foot. My CXL Bayfields are tighter yet, and I can not wear heavier socks with them. Even with normal socks they are pretty snug across the ball of the foot. IF the Bayfield in shell was an option today I'd want to make sure they aren't too tight to wear with heavier wool socks. Shell can be and usually is a bit looser fitting than calf, but not always. I don't want to go up in size or width so much that I get heel slip. I am a 10D in the Bayfield and most of my shoes and boots. When I have tried a 10.5 in other footwear they are too long. Going to an E usually means heel slip. Not sure that would happen with a shell version of the Bayfield though because it is so sung to start with. Any thoughts on which size would be best?