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Allen Edmonds Appreciation Thread - Page 2438

post #36556 of 50992
Quote:
Originally Posted by chinngiskhaan View Post
 


Thanks for the info! I'd be interested in seeing just how fast it takes an Allen Edmonds shoemaker to put a shoe together. If I remember correctly they changed their processes so that one person puts one entire shoe together, whereas before, it was more of an assembly line type thing (one person is responsible for one part of the shoe). I wonder what effect this change in methods has on the final product of the shoes if any.

 

I don't remember hearing that.  Any idea where you read it?  That sounds counterintuitive to me for what would make a better product coming from a company of their size.  Given their output, I'd expect an assembly line to be far more efficient.

 

If they have changed their methods, I think that may have a lot to do with prevalence of flaws.  At least until the person has several years of experience under their belt, and they can perform all the tasks will equal skill, they would end up being a "jack of all trades" rather than a master of one. 

 

Otherwise, I just ascribe most of the flaws to expediency.  They are trying to make so many shoes during a work day that they just rush through each process.

 

I think the employees are probably more trained than one may think, and most shoe companies (AE included) have a very loyal employee population.  AE pays very well for a blue collar company from what I've read, and they treat their employees very well.  Like any company, I'm sure their turnover rate is an issue to deal with, but they also have many "lifers" who complete an entire career and retire from the company.

post #36557 of 50992

Am I the only one who likes to wear shell in bad wear?  It cleans up so easily!

post #36558 of 50992
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoneyWellSpent View Post
 

 

I don't remember hearing that.  Any idea where you read it?  That sounds counterintuitive to me for what would make a better product coming from a company of their size.  Given their output, I'd expect an assembly line to be far more efficient.

 

If they have changed their methods, I think that may have a lot to do with prevalence of flaws.  At least until the person has several years of experience under their belt, and they can perform all the tasks will equal skill, they would end up being a "jack of all trades" rather than a master of one. 

 

Otherwise, I just ascribe most of the flaws to expediency.  They are trying to make so many shoes during a work day that they just rush through each process.

 

I think the employees are probably more trained than one may think, and most shoe companies (AE included) have a very loyal employee population.  AE pays very well for a blue collar company from what I've read, and they treat their employees very well.  Like any company, I'm sure their turnover rate is an issue to deal with, but they also have many "lifers" who complete an entire career and retire from the company.


I read it on here. Though I could be completely mistaken. I remember hearing that it happened some time during the recession. I to wondered how this would save them money... Does anyone no the answer to this?  Did they change their ways? Or am I up in the night?

post #36559 of 50992
Quote:
Originally Posted by tigerpac View Post
 

Am I the only one who likes to wear shell in bad wear?  It cleans up so easily!

 

I'm wearing my shell strands today and it's raining pretty good in NY/NJ. I have a pair of shell PA's that have an older finish and they get the water welts like crazy but the newer shell seems to be fine in the rain. I used some Alden Leather Defender on them as well which helps. It also helps get a great glow on my shell shoes.

post #36560 of 50992
Quote:
Originally Posted by chinngiskhaan View Post
 


Thanks! I think you've got a lot of valid points. It seems like maybe a combination of what everyone is saying. Like you say, clearly there is no way the AE craftsman are as trained as those that work on the higher end brands, and like others have said, it's not really in AE's best interest to hire the best of the best when it comes to shoe making because A. They make far more shoes a year than any of the higher end brands B. The materials AE uses are not as expensive as the materials used by the higher end brands C. AE's seconds market is a big part of their income, so they don't worry as much as the higher end brands do about a shoe being imperfect.

 

And yes, AE shoes are in my opinion more than acceptable at their price range, and like I said in my original post I personally have never had any issues with AE shoes, nor have I ever seen these issues in another persons shoes outside of the online realm.

 

I also liked your point about bad news traveling fast. I'm sure that the vast majority of their shoes are major flaw free.

 

I agree that much of AE's employee population isn't likely to have the training that those of the higher end brands may have, but don't carry that thought too far.  They are still Goodyear-welted shoes, made using the same type of machinery and overall processes.  The biggest difference comes from time spent per shoe, and quality of the leathers used.  After all, once the concept has been mastered, it is the two hands that are guiding the machinery that leads to the end result.

 

Under the often proclaimed "10,000 hour rule" of practice to become an "expert" at something, you will have many employees who have mastered their specific tasks.  I'd wager that if you took a veteran AE employee and had them slow down, and use the same quality components as a higher-end brand, you would probably be surprised at the quality of product they could produce.

 

None of this negates that Port Washington certainly doesn't have a "culture" of shoe manufacturing with families that are fully vested in the trade, passing down their skills to their children.  Northamptonshire in  England does have this culture, as do certain parts of Maine where the hand-sewn shoes are made (Rancourt, Quoddy, etc.).

post #36561 of 50992
Re: the JAB sales, look for a 70% off everything or (more likely) a buy one get two (or three) free sale on everything, not just a "shoe tree" sale.

In the spirit of posting pics if shoes (though I find the discussion if seconds and of AE manufacturing intriguing) here are my Chili Strands on their maiden voyage today. This color is so great in person, far better than pictures or the name suggest.
post #36562 of 50992
Quote:
Originally Posted by Septimus View Post

Re: the JAB sales, look for a 70% off everything or (more likely) a buy one get two (or three) free sale on everything, not just a "shoe tree" sale.

In the spirit of posting pics if shoes (though I find the discussion if seconds and of AE manufacturing intriguing) here are my Chili Strands on their maiden voyage today. This color is so great in person, far better than pictures or the name suggest.


nice!  I really like that color! I think I like those better than the walnut.

post #36563 of 50992
Quote:
Originally Posted by chinngiskhaan View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Septimus View Post

Re: the JAB sales, look for a 70% off everything or (more likely) a buy one get two (or three) free sale on everything, not just a "shoe tree" sale.

In the spirit of posting pics if shoes (though I find the discussion if seconds and of AE manufacturing intriguing) here are my Chili Strands on their maiden voyage today. This color is so great in person, far better than pictures or the name suggest.


nice!  I really like that color! I think I like those better than the walnut.

 

Beauty.  I'm still torn between these and the merlot . . . I'll keep looking for more pics of both!

post #36564 of 50992
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoneyWellSpent View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chinngiskhaan View Post
 


Thanks! I think you've got a lot of valid points. It seems like maybe a combination of what everyone is saying. Like you say, clearly there is no way the AE craftsman are as trained as those that work on the higher end brands, and like others have said, it's not really in AE's best interest to hire the best of the best when it comes to shoe making because A. They make far more shoes a year than any of the higher end brands B. The materials AE uses are not as expensive as the materials used by the higher end brands C. AE's seconds market is a big part of their income, so they don't worry as much as the higher end brands do about a shoe being imperfect.

 

And yes, AE shoes are in my opinion more than acceptable at their price range, and like I said in my original post I personally have never had any issues with AE shoes, nor have I ever seen these issues in another persons shoes outside of the online realm.

 

I also liked your point about bad news traveling fast. I'm sure that the vast majority of their shoes are major flaw free.

 

I agree that much of AE's employee population isn't likely to have the training that those of the higher end brands may have, but don't carry that thought too far.  They are still Goodyear-welted shoes, made using the same type of machinery and overall processes.  The biggest difference comes from time spent per shoe, and quality of the leathers used.  After all, once the concept has been mastered, it is the two hands that are guiding the machinery that leads to the end result.

 

Under the often proclaimed "10,000 hour rule" of practice to become an "expert" at something, you will have many employees who have mastered their specific tasks.  I'd wager that if you took a veteran AE employee and had them slow down, and use the same quality components as a higher-end brand, you would probably be surprised at the quality of product they could produce.

 

None of this negates that Port Washington certainly doesn't have a "culture" of shoe manufacturing with families that are fully vested in the trade, passing down their skills to their children.  Northamptonshire in  England does have this culture, as do certain parts of Maine where the hand-sewn shoes are made (Rancourt, Quoddy, etc.).

 

I'd love to hear how Paul Grangaard would answer this question.  I suspect they aren't too worried about the number of seconds that result from their manufacturing processes.  Even if it turns off a subset of their customers, that group is probably pretty small and it seems likely they've taken it into account in their business model.

 

As an aside, I still have a dream in the back of my mind of moving up to Port Washington and starting a second career as an apprentice shoemaker . . .

post #36565 of 50992
Quote:
Originally Posted by halfnhalfnhalf View Post
 

 

I'd love to hear how Paul Grangaard would answer this question.  I suspect they aren't too worried about the number of seconds that result from their manufacturing processes.  Even if it turns off a subset of their customers, that group is probably pretty small and it seems likely they've taken it into account in their business model.

 

As an aside, I still have a dream in the back of my mind of moving up to Port Washington and starting a second career as an apprentice shoemaker . . .


+1 to that!

 

I have actually given serious thought to pursuing a career in the shoe crafting business. It's been an interest of mine since I was around 10 years old. I know a guy in Mongolia that makes shoes by hand. I plan to live there for a few years after I graduate. If he allows it, I would spend the majority of my free time following him around learning the trade.

post #36566 of 50992
Quote:
Originally Posted by bellyhungry View Post

Just noticed that RL has Sanderson Suede Wingtips for sales for $195.xx with a good selection of sizes available.

Pretty good deal if you are in the market for a pair of suede dress shoes, I'd say.

RL website is now selling them for $168. Very tempting.
post #36567 of 50992
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dillardiv View Post

Someone talk me either into or out of those white McNeils.

Pros:
They look awesome

Cons:
No half sizes
Was hoping to avoid buying shoes for a while
Where would I wear them? (I live in Virginia)

No widths either.
post #36568 of 50992
Quote:
Originally Posted by chinngiskhaan View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by halfnhalfnhalf View Post
 

 

I'd love to hear how Paul Grangaard would answer this question.  I suspect they aren't too worried about the number of seconds that result from their manufacturing processes.  Even if it turns off a subset of their customers, that group is probably pretty small and it seems likely they've taken it into account in their business model.

 

As an aside, I still have a dream in the back of my mind of moving up to Port Washington and starting a second career as an apprentice shoemaker . . .


+1 to that!

 

I have actually given serious thought to pursuing a career in the shoe crafting business. It's been an interest of mine since I was around 10 years old. I know a guy in Mongolia that makes shoes by hand. I plan to live there for a few years after I graduate. If he allows it, I would spend the majority of my free time following him around learning the trade.

 

How's this for inspiration:

 

http://www.theshoesnobblog.com/biography

post #36569 of 50992
Finally got my BB walnut strands in 7E which fit perfectly.

post #36570 of 50992
Quote:
Originally Posted by halfnhalfnhalf View Post
 

 

How's this for inspiration:

 

http://www.theshoesnobblog.com/biography


Thanks! Quite an inspiring story for sure.

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