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Alligator / Crocodile Shoes - Page 35

post #511 of 948

I have been looking at these shoes with a untrained eye, and I stand corrected. Seems my comparison are mostly my Mezlan's (got to start somewhere) and from what I have learned in this forum they are concidered "crappy". I therefore have no objections to your comments, but would like to add the following: 

 

"Second, the stitching on the lateral side of the saddle on the right foot...at the bottom of the saddle... is sloppy. It doesn't even meet the stitching on the medial side of the saddle. Part of this is down to the fact that the saddle is pieced. But the gimping doesn't match or align either."

 

I have attached a close up photo that better shows what DWFII found.

 

"Third, the quarters and tongue look to be cut from the tail--which is, in most quality shops, considered marginal or even offal."
 

The quarters I believe are made from where the belly meet the flank. The tongue could be tail, but does it not look like belly too? (see photo).

 

"Fourth, thickness is not the be-all and end all. Esp. in bombe' alligator where the leather tends to be semi-rigid when compared to something like calf. That said, and noting that I don't have a leather gauge handy, I suspect most contemporary alligator is running around 1.4mm or 3.5 ounce--comparable to, or maybe a tidge heavy, relative to a man's calfskin shoe. But I don't know how you would measure that thickness especially on a cut and bound shoe. If measured at the tongue I would expect the leather on the tail to be thicker."

 

My gauge shows that the quarters (flank area) are 1.8mm as a minimum and the tongue (belly area) is 1.5mm. For comparison my contemporary Mezlan's are 0.8mm. I also have some Artioli's being 1.0mm and vintage F. Pinet and Banister/Stetson being 1.2mm and 1.3mm respectively.    

 

Saddle front

 

Quarter

 

Tongue

 

Mezlan and FootJoy


Edited by jonoft - 3/12/13 at 4:19am
post #512 of 948

These are my Banister alligator shoes dating to 1956. Banister was made by Stetson Shoe Co. at that time, but supposed to be slightly more up-scale. Made of several pieces (10) I guess

they should be considered being the Mezlans of the 50's, or? They cost $61 which is todays $465 using the inflation calculator. Similar style Mezlans costs $700 to $1000 so either they were good value at that time or the Mezlans of today are "over priced".    

 

 

 

post #513 of 948

These pieced together Ferragamos ran $2000 some 8-10 years ago so maybe the Banisters were real good value.

 

530868

post #514 of 948
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonoft View Post

These are my Banister alligator shoes dating to 1956. Banister was made by Stetson Shoe Co. at that time, but supposed to be slightly more up-scale. Made of several pieces (10) I guess
they should be considered being the Mezlans of the 50's, or? They cost $61 which is todays $465 using the inflation calculator. Similar style Mezlans costs $700 to $1000 so either they were good value at that time or the Mezlans of today are "over priced".    







Actually, Stetson was an upscale maker thru the 1940's. Closed channel sole, hand-welted, all the fixin's & trimmin's.

It is impossible to make a comparison on shoe prices based on the economic value of a dollar. Go back even further (20's), and the best of the best shoes only cost in the $300 range in today's dollars (or less, I crunched the numbers a few years back). Shoes, even the finest of them, were more of a utility item. There are a LOT of members here who own in excess of 50 pairs of shoes, and that was an extreme rarity many decades back. Luxury items comprised a much lower percentage of a person's actual yearly income.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonoft View Post

These pieced together Ferragamos ran $2000 some 8-10 years ago so maybe the Banisters were real good value.

530868

Here you see the value of marketing and name-branding. The name "Ferragamo" itself gets one 2x the price of the same shoe that says "Mezlan".
post #515 of 948
By the way, how did you come up with "1956" as an exact date for those Banisters?
post #516 of 948
If you look...with new-found eyes satisfied.gif...at all the alligator/crocodile shoes posted recently, you can see the difference between the quality of the leather and that used on the FJ's. With the closer views, I am still not entirely convinced that the tongue and quarters (around the heel) are not tail. I'd have to handle the shoes to be sure. But If not tail, then definitely cutting room floor scraps from a very large hide.

Look at the shape and size of the tiles on the other makers shoes...as much as I deplore the piecing...that's the way alligator should look. In my opinion.

Again...some people don't like alligator. To each his own. But I wonder how much of that is simply the aesthetic confusion that is created by piecing. There was a pair of whole cut G&G (?) posted recently that were unimpeachably beautiful. A good part of it is the harmony and refinement that comes along with respecting the leather and letting it speak for itself.
post #517 of 948
Quote:
Originally Posted by DWFII View Post

If you look...with new-found eyes satisfied.gif...at all the alligator/crocodile shoes posted recently, you can see the difference between the quality of the leather and that used on the FJ's. With the closer views, I am still not entirely convinced that the tongue and quarters (around the heel) are not tail. I'd have to handle the shoes to be sure. But If not tail, then definitely cutting room floor scraps from a very large hide.

Look at the shape and size of the tiles on the other makers shoes...as much as I deplore the piecing...that's the way alligator should look. In my opinion.

Again...some people don't like alligator. To each his own. But I wonder how much of that is simply the aesthetic confusion that is created by piecing. There was a pair of whole cut G&G (?) posted recently that were unimpeachably beautiful. A good part of it is the harmony and refinement that comes along with respecting the leather and letting it speak for itself.

A true artist's informed opinion is inspiring.
post #518 of 948

"Actually, Stetson was an upscale maker thru the 1940's. Closed channel sole, hand-welted, all the fixin's & trimmin's."

 

I did not mean that Stetson were not "upscale", but the son of a former salesman at Stetson wrote in another forum that his father sold both. Stetson had aquired the Banister name in the forties and sold the Banister labeled Stetsons for more.     
 

"It is impossible to make a comparison on shoe prices based on the economic value of a dollar"

 

I should have known this, but it is good to know that others have thought about it in the same way.    

 

"By the way, how did you come up with "1956" as an exact date for those Banisters?"

 

There was a receipt (and spare laces) in the shoes. 

 

"But If not tail, then definitely cutting room floor scraps from a very large hide."

 

Scraps? That hurts me.....,but you are probably right :-). You have opened my eyes and I am happy to have learned something today. Maybe my Artiolis meet with your approval? 

 


Edited by jonoft - 3/12/13 at 7:21am
post #519 of 948
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonoft View Post

"

"But If not tail, then definitely cutting room floor scraps from a very large hide."

Scraps? It hurts me.....,but you are probably right :-). I am happy to have learned something today. Maybe my Artiolis meet with your approval? 

You need to understand...when it comes to shoes and shoemaking, I try to speak always of what I know. It is so seldom that I get to express an opinion--personal likes and dislikes--because to do so not only implies criticism of the maker but also, apparently, of the owner (something I don't understand, frankly, but there it is and it's very real here on SF).

Despite all that, even in this conversation, I am trying not to criticize the maker as much as the vision and the aesthetics. And I do that only to help people here look...see...what they are viewing. Whether I approve of your other shoes or not is moot, esp. if you don't understand what I'm getting at with regard to the FJs. And if you do understand, then it's far more important that you like them than that I do. And more importantly even than that, that you understand why you like or don't like them.

In your first post with these shoes you presented them as "American workmanship at it's best". Which, in my mind, was a stretch...even the alligator was not premium. At first I backed off from commenting but when the conversation seemed to grow legs and someone mentioned that the maker had gone tips up, I just felt it was a perfect opportunity to share some insights. I hope you don't mind.
post #520 of 948
Quote:
Originally Posted by jonoft View Post

"Actually, Stetson was an upscale maker thru the 1940's. Closed channel sole, hand-welted, all the fixin's & trimmin's."
I did not mean that Stetson were not "upscale", but the son of a former salesman at Stetson wrote in another forum that his father sold both. Stetson had aquired the Banister name in the forties and sold the Banister labeled Stetsons for more.     

I have read the thread as well...

http://www.styleforum.net/t/227490/banister-shoes

Stetson sold an entirely different line of shoes under the Banister name... not the same models under both, but higher price for one over the other. Understandable that this could be a guess, because this is often done today. But in the case of Stetson & Banister, not the case.

Also, the Stetson styles were always more fashion forward (for the time) thru the mid to late 50's . They were also sold for more money than the Banisters
post #521 of 948
As an example of the better hides available these days:

]
post #522 of 948
Quote:
Originally Posted by isshinryu101 View Post

I have read the thread as well...

http://www.styleforum.net/t/227490/banister-shoes

Stetson sold an entirely different line of shoes under the Banister name... not the same models under both, but higher price for one over the other. Understandable that this could be a guess, because this is often done today. But in the case of Stetson & Banister, not the case.

Also, the Stetson styles were always more fashion forward (for the time) thru the mid to late 50's . They were also sold for more money than the Banisters

I wish I could find pics of Stetsons we wore in the 60s? They were high end and priced the same as JM, Nettletons, etc. The most popular was their split toe styles.
post #523 of 948

"Whether I approve of your other shoes or not is moot"

 

What I ment was to ask is if these skins (and the way they are arranged) indicates a better shoemaking than the FJ's. I'm in the forum to learn more... and avoid mistakes. My first gators were Mezlan. At first I liked them, but I soon understood that there were better shoes. The Artioli looked better and felt better. The FJ's I thought were as good as shoes could be, Goodyear welted, sturdy thick skins and quite good matching of the skins between the shoes. I still like them......, but I now know that workmanship should be better to make claims like I did. You were perfectly right in telling me :-). And there may be others also picking up your insight!  

 

"You need to understand...when it comes to shoes and shoemaking, I try to speak always of what I know. It is so seldom that I get to express an opinion--personal likes and dislikes--because to do so not only implies criticism of the maker but also, apparently, of the owner (something I don't understand, frankly, but there it is and it's very real here on SF)."

 

There was a smiley at the end of "hurts". English not being my mother tongue sometimes makes for "lost in translation". I would rather be criticized for buying low quality due to ignorance than being criticized for having bad taste. Expressing personal likes and dislikes is fine with me.      
 


Edited by jonoft - 3/12/13 at 9:36am
post #524 of 948
Quote:
Originally Posted by mr monty View Post

I wish I could find pics of Stetsons we wore in the 60s? They were high end and priced the same as JM, Nettletons, etc. The most popular was their split toe styles.

For some reason, it seems like well over half the 60's U.S. gator shoes were split toe. Sadly, I don't have any 60's Stetsons. 30's & 40's, but no later.
post #525 of 948

"Stetson sold an entirely different line of shoes under the Banister name... not the same models under both, but higher price for one over the other. Understandable that this could be a guess, because this is often done today. But in the case of Stetson & Banister, not the case."

 

I have some 1955 ads from Stetson and Banister for what appear to be the same alligator shoe at first glance, but perhaps are not?.
 

 

 

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"Also, the Stetson styles were always more fashion forward (for the time) thru the mid to late 50's . They were also sold for more money than the Banisters"

 

From the ads this appears to be the other way. From $19.95 to $55.00 for Stetson and from $24.50 to $75.00 for Banister.

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