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Allen Edmonds Appreciation Thread - Page 2143

post #32131 of 47196

Interesting discussion that's been taking place on the "high-end" status, or lack thereof, regarding AE.

 

I just have a few thoughts, and with a couple of them, I don't mean any offense.

 

I don't think AE considers themselves to be a "high-end" shoe company.  I think they consider themselves to be a high quality shoe and strive to produce the highest quality they can while keeping prices as low as possible.  These two goals are obviously at odds with each other, but I think AE balances them very well.

 

I do think that the status of the men's clothing/shoe industry has incidentally made AE a "high-end" shoe.  The proliferation of cheap materials, cheap manufacturing methods, and cheap labor has skewed the spectrum in the negative direction substantially over the last several decades. As a result, shoes which are made using traditional methods and respectable materials are forced to be more expensive, and they often stand out visually, even to the uninformed masses.  They may not know why they look nicer, but they can frequently tell that you have on more expensive shoes.  I fully believe that in a poll of "average" men, AE would end up being ranked as a "high-end" shoe.  Those of us who have been on SF long enough, and know about shoes, know that there are absolutely other brands that spend significantly more time, effort, and money in their finishing.  Those additional costs get shifted to the consumer when it comes time to purchase them.

 

It is silly to forget that we are discussing a spectrum here.  Saying that AE isn't a high end shoe simply because of the existence of better shoes available in the market isn't logical.  Using that logic, there could only be one high-end product in any given product market, which we all know isn't true.  High-end isn't synonymous with "king of the hill."  Yes, there can only be one "best" but there can be many that are "better than most."

 

In a similar vein, saying that there can be many that are "better than most" is based on the principle of a Gaussian distribution.  However, by saying that, I am using the assumption that the people in this discussion have a good understanding of the available options and can reasonably come to the same conclusion using abstract or theoretical thought.  Under that assumption, it is reasonable to make such claims for purposes of illustration.  However, the discussion remains abstract or theoretical because we haven't presented any scientifically derived data with which to make such claims.  For statistics to have any teeth, it must first have dependable data as a foundation.

 

Here is where we insert Mark Twain's premise when he grouped statistics with "lies and damned lies."  Using statistical jargon to make an argument sound more persuasive to those who are less informed amounts to employing proof by verbosity, or argument from authority.  I think that it is reasonable to make claims about a subjective concept within a group of people who are on relatively equal footing in order to illustrate a point.  Anything beyond that, however, is simply proving Twain's point.  We can't make accurate claims using a Gaussian distribution, asserting how many standard deviations one shoe brand is from another, or even what the mean is, without hard objective data from which to calculate the distribution.

 

Statistics may have changed a lot since the mid-19th century, but I think that the reason many people's perception of it hasn't changed is because it is still used as a tool in rhetoric and for the purposes of bolstering an argument at the expense of the less informed individual in the argument.  That will never change.      

post #32132 of 47196
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJTraveler View Post
 

Just picked up these brand new Seven Hills in bourbon on the Bay.  Really pleased with them.  They're on the 2 last and have the v-tread tap sole.  Very comfortable!  Not sure why AE decided not to go full production on these.

 

 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by cincikid View Post
 

They look a bit similar to the Rush from the AE Independence collection

 

To me they're a bit more casual version of the Patriot.  Both are penny loafers.

post #32133 of 47196


AE Aberdeens
post #32134 of 47196

MWS dropping eloquent knowledge as always.

post #32135 of 47196
Quote:
Originally Posted by kentyman View Post
 

I'd gladly sign that. Even though I don't have a MTO, I do have this:

 

I have been gone for months, but I wanted to follow up on round 4 of these McAllisters. Here they are made with the new experimental pattern to remove the toe ridge. Proof that it can be done:

 

Hidden (Click to show)

 

The only possible blemish I saw was a particularly wrinkled piece of leather in the lacing, either from weaker leather or just sitting in the box wrong, but after some Reno and lacing them properly, I think it's not a big deal:

 

 

Looking forward to wearing these for the first time not-this-but-next weekend at a good friend's wedding!

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post
 

That's awesome that they agreed on the ridge being an issue.  I noticed the ridge on my AE's wingtip models.  It's great to see that AE is doing things to change this. 

 

Thanks for being the catalyst for this change! 

 

I embarrassingly realized that with all my recent travel, I forgot to email Allison and thank her. I also asked her about the new pattern. Here was here response:

 

Quote:
Good Morning Kent,

 

I am always happy to help accommodate someone in any way I can. Thank you for sharing the photo! It is a possibility that we could make the template used on your footwear as a part of our regular designs. I will make a request and see what the design team can do. 

 

Thank you for your loyalty and giving us the opportunity to correct the issue,

 

Allison Meyer

 

Exciting that they may improve the pattern, and an excellent example of Allison's (and AE's in general) great customer support.

post #32136 of 47196
Quote:
Originally Posted by clarinetplayer View Post



AE Aberdeens

I have them too and I like them a lot. Great casual shoe for the fall weather. 

post #32137 of 47196
Quote:
Originally Posted by kentyman View Post
 

 

I embarrassingly realized that with all my recent travel, I forgot to email Allison and thank her. I also asked her about the new pattern. Here was here response:

 

 

Exciting that they may improve the pattern, and an excellent example of Allison's (and AE's in general) great customer support.

 

If they permanently implement the change, you can always look at the McAllister and know that you had something to do with it's improvement.  Kinda cool.  :bigstar:

post #32138 of 47196

I would like to give a shout out to the Allen Edmunds store in Phoenix, AZ.  Last Thursday I took my McAllister's in to get the left shoe stretched free of charge (it takes a week).  I noticed there was a sale on and my eye was drawn to the Blue Neumok.  I told the salesman I would need to discuss another purchase with my wife.  One week later,yesterday, I went in to pick up my newly stretched McAllister and noticed that the sale was over, damn.  I asked the saleswoman when the sale ended and she said they would honor the sale price on the Blue Neumok.  I asked her if I could get the sale price on my 7 week old McAllister's as I paid full price.  Guess what - She gave me the sale price on the McAllister, Neumok, matching belt for the Neumok, shoe trees, travel kit, and shoelaces.    

 

Damn fine people working for Allen Edmunds.

post #32139 of 47196

I ordered a few pairs of cedar shoe trees during the recent JAS sale ($8.50 a pair). I thought I would take a picture to compare the three different brands of trees I now have. I was surprised to see how noticeably wider the fixed full-toe trees are compared to the split tree. All three are size L. 

 

 

 


Edited by DNSamurai - 10/18/13 at 9:40am
post #32140 of 47196
Quote:
Originally Posted by DNSamurai View Post
 

I ordered a few pairs of cedar shoe trees during the recent JAS sale ($8.50 a pair). I thought I would take a picture to compare the three different brands of trees I now have. I was surprised to see how noticeably wider the fixed trees (not sure what the proper term is) are compared to the split tree. All three are size L.

 

 

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
 

 

 

 

 

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
 

 

 

The proper term is "full toe" for the ones that are fixed.  When the split toe trees are inserted, they expand to fill the space appropriately.  Thus, the wider forepart on the full toe trees makes sense, given they can't expand.

post #32141 of 47196
Quote:
Originally Posted by wdahab View Post


I am not intimately familiar with Carmina, so I don't know how their widths fit. I just figured if I didn't mention the EE width, someone else was going to.

Here's the problem with their options over all their lasts: I'm going to assume (though perhaps this is wrong) that they can't make each of their styles of shoe on any of those lasts. So, for example, their LWB can't be made on a narrow last, if its only made up for their extra wide last. So yeah, they have options, but if you want a pair of their boots, and they only come on a last that doesn't work for you at that width, you're out of luck. This is as opposed to AE who does a wonderful job of making their lasts available over the full range of widths.

 

The flaw in your argument is that, identical to Carmina, not all AE lasts work for all feet, regardless of the shoe's availability in different widths.  I cannot wear the 8 last because a D width is perfect in the heel but too narrow at the ball of my foot.  The E width in the 8 last is too wide in the heel and my foot swims in the shoe.  Same problem with the 2 last for most people.  There are also many with low volume feet that cannot wear the 5 last due to the bowing issue.  Some cannot get a good fit with the 7 last, regardless of width.

 

With regard to Carmina, I will never get my foot in the Simpson and other narrow lasts, but the  Rain, Inca and Forest lasts are almost identical in shape to the narrow lasts and work for wider feet.

 

I do agree with you, though, that an individual with an irregular width or other fit issue is much more likely to find a shoe that fits him at AE than at Carmina, due to the number of AE lasts and widths available.

 

It is interesting to me that we are only discussing Carmina vs. AE with regards to quality.  For me, my major incentive to step up to Carmina is not the difference in the finishing, but the difference in the lasts.  The stubby toe cap and extended welt on the Park Avenue and 5th Avenue can appear blobby, which is why I began looking elsewhere for my cap toes.  When I justify the price increase to go outside AE's offering, it is to obtain a sleeker shoe on a last that fits my foot as well or better than AE.  When it comes to more casual shoes, I can't see myself going outside of AE.

post #32142 of 47196
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoneyWellSpent View Post
 

 

The proper term is "full toe" for the ones that are fixed.  When the split toe trees are inserted, they expand to fill the space appropriately.  Thus, the wider forepart on the full toe trees makes sense, given they can't expand.

Interesting. Thanks.

 

Why would someone choose a full-toe versus the split-toe, or vice versa?

post #32143 of 47196
Quote:
Originally Posted by DNSamurai View Post
 

Interesting. Thanks.

 

Why would someone choose a full-toe versus the split-toe, or vice versa?

 

You are probably going to get several responses to that question.  Personally, I think it comes down to individual preference.  AE claims that the full-toe tree is better for AE models, and the split toe tree is better for "all other brands."  I don't believe that, or see any reason why that would be true.  All full-toe trees are the same shape, but AE's has many different shaped lasts.  Unless they somehow used a computer to "average" out the shape to basically accommodate all their lasts to some degree, then it doesn't seem like it would matter.

 

I use full-toe trees because the split toe trees annoy me.  Plain and simple. :D  I find the split toe ones to be more finicky, and I always feel the need to reach inside the shoe to make sure they are fully expanded with my fingers, because they never seem to expand appropriately on their own.  This may not be the case for everyone, but it's been my experience.   

post #32144 of 47196
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoneyWellSpent View Post
 

 

You are probably going to get several responses to that question.  Personally, I think it comes down to individual preference.  AE claims that the full-toe tree is better for AE models, and the split toe tree is better for "all other brands."  I don't believe that, or see any reason why that would be true.  All full-toe trees are the same shape, but AE's has many different shaped lasts.  Unless they somehow used a computer to "average" out the shape to basically accommodate all their lasts to some degree, then it doesn't seem like it would matter.

 

I use full-toe trees because the split toe trees annoy me.  Plain and simple. :D  I find the split toe ones to be more finicky, and I always feel the need to reach inside the shoe to make sure they are fully expanded with my fingers, because they never seem to expand appropriately on their own.  This may not be the case for everyone, but it's been my experience.   

 

I do this as well.  Always need to check to make sure they expanded.

post #32145 of 47196
Quote:
Originally Posted by New Shoes1 View Post
 

 

The flaw in your argument is that, identical to Carmina, not all AE lasts work for all feet, regardless of the shoe's availability in different widths.  I cannot wear the 8 last because a D width is perfect in the heel but too narrow at the ball of my foot.  The E width in the 8 last is too wide in the heel and my foot swims in the shoe.  Same problem with the 2 last for most people.  There are also many with low volume feet that cannot wear the 5 last due to the bowing issue.  Some cannot get a good fit with the 7 last, regardless of width.

 

With regard to Carmina, I will never get my foot in the Simpson and other narrow lasts, but the  Rain, Inca and Forest lasts are almost identical in shape to the narrow lasts and work for wider feet.

 

I do agree with you, though, that an individual with an irregular width or other fit issue is much more likely to find a shoe that fits him at AE than at Carmina, due to the number of AE lasts and widths available.

 

It is interesting to me that we are only discussing Carmina vs. AE with regards to quality.  For me, my major incentive to step up to Carmina is not the difference in the finishing, but the difference in the lasts.  The stubby toe cap and extended welt on the Park Avenue and 5th Avenue can appear blobby, which is why I began looking elsewhere for my cap toes.  When I justify the price increase to go outside AE's offering, it is to obtain a sleeker shoe on a last that fits my foot as well or better than AE.  When it comes to more casual shoes, I can't see myself going outside of AE.

I realize this is the AE thread but will ask these questions since you seem to have a lot of experience with Carmina.  I also hope that others in the thread would benefit from your response. 

 

What are the narrow Carmina last aside from the Simpson?  And which last shape corresponds to what?

 

I am a US C width and want to understand which of the Carmina lasts fit the best for narrow and low volume feet like mine.

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