Originally Posted by Bam!ChairDance
The quality of Barneys house brand stuff varies quite a bit. It's impossible to draw conclusions about the whole line based on a few models
Por ejemplo, a number of the shoes are blake stitched, others are glued. On my last Co-Op trip, I handled a few private label models myself and some indeed had the plasticky leather sinned was describing, but other models had a nice grain/hand/texture to them.
I'd imagine, however, that the huge amount of variation would turn buying private label stuff online into quite the frightful experience. But there's no reason to hate on the whole line.
It's probably hit and miss.
I have a pair of Saks house brand shoes that are made in portugal, slightly above AE standards in a much more pleasing last.
99% of shoes we talk about are benchmade anyway so the difference is not that much as long as you're getting blake/rapid or goodyear, and they've used full grain leather. the markups for chaneled soles and name brands seem a bit arbitrary, especially when they're still pretty much made the same way.