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What shoes fall between A-E & EG? - Page 6

post #76 of 90
Quote:
I think they are marginally more elegant and handsome than the products of Allen-Edmonds, Alden or C&J Benchgrade, but the difference seems to me to be a modest difference in degree, not in kind, and certainly nothing that would induce me to pay a whacking premium over what I can get A-Es for.
I think that makes you a "value-oriented" consumer (which I am also).

But I think there are people who are not simply value-oriented. There are those who are much more esthetically-oriented (and/or exclusivity-oriented), to whom seemingly small increases in elegance matter while substantially increased monetary costs do not.

A $200 Remington 870 will take down a bird just as well in my hands as the finest $10,000 English over-and-under. I would likely never buy the latter as it is a poor value proposition, but I appreciate the elegance and workmanship of the latter, and certainly understand those who choose to forego a substantial sum of money to possess it.
post #77 of 90
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I will confess to having seen very few Edward Green and JLP shoes in the flesh. I just spent a little while perusing the websites of those firms. I see no reason to revise my opinions
I thought so as well. Until I saw the tailor I use wearing a pair of Edward Green shoes. WOW.

Now I would like to purchase a pair... but likely through the Internet when I find it at a more value-oriented price.
post #78 of 90
By the way, the prostitute analogy is seriously flawed. One is not renting these shoes, after all, but buying them.

A better analogy would be marriage. Now considering both the time frame (more permanent) and proximity, that changes the calculus of value, doesn't it?
post #79 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sartorially Challenged
By the way, the prostitute analogy is seriously flawed. One is not renting these shoes, after all, but buying them.

A better analogy would be marriage. Now considering both the time frame (more permanent) and proximity, that changes the calculus of value, doesn't it?

I'm not touching THAT analogy with the proverbial 1 km pole!

post #80 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sartorially Challenged
I think that makes you a "value-oriented" consumer (which I am also).

But I think there are people who are not simply value-oriented. There are those who are much more esthetically-oriented (and/or exclusivity-oriented), to whom seemingly small increases in elegance matter while substantially increased monetary costs do not.

A $200 Remington 870 will take down a bird just as well in my hands as the finest $10,000 English over-and-under. I would likely never buy the latter as it is a poor value proposition, but I appreciate the elegance and workmanship of the latter, and certainly understand those who choose to forego a substantial sum of money to possess it.

Finding a new London best O/U for $10,000 would be about as likely as finding Edward Greens on sale at Target for $35 a pair! Purdey current ask GBP 55,000 for an O/U on the Woodward action. Even this pales in comparison to Boss' price of GBP 75,000 (pre VAT)!

Let's look at the shotgun analogy in another way. The Remington 870 is a marvelous piece of machinery, but it has no pretensions to elegance. A few years ago I blew some inheritance money on a Spanish Grulla side by side. Had I paid full retail, it would have cost about $6,000 or $7,000. In terms of functionality, elegance of line, etc., it is pretty much indistinguishable from a Purdey costing GBP 46,500. The engraving on the Purdey would be more delicate and refined. The wood would have somewhat nicer figure, and that's about it for a price differential of $77,000--just not worth it to me (even if I had that kind of money to blow)! Or, I could have spent $15,000 or so for a top of the line Grulla, such as the King of Spain shoots. And what would justify the $68,000 price differential between that gun and the Purdey? Probably nothing more than the name "Purdey" on the barrels! In other words, I am not averse to paying a premium for elegance--or I would have stuck with my 870 that I paid $80 for back when--but I like to get good value at whatever level I make my purchases. If I were solely concerned with functionality, I could probably content myself with the $25 specials at DSW and be damned to Allen-Edmonds!
post #81 of 90
Knowing nothing about hookers (and mighty proud of it!) but owning some hard-won truths and scars and delusions about women, I return to the same thought. In the end, no matter how beautiful the woman (more-or-less objectively), it always comes down to the inner life; hers, mine and the connection between those lives. Would I be happy with an unattractive woman? No. But a good-looking woman with inner light and hints of fire is infintely more compelling than an emotionally inert 10. So, to shoes... I am at this moment, by chance, wearing the same AE shells I said a few posts back I'd save first from the burning house. My Lobbs and Greens are nicely shelved in the closet. These AEs have become me after a decade. Couldn't give them up now. Don't care what's written inside them, how they looked new, what they cost. It's a form of love, to be sure.
post #82 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by JLibourel
Finding a new London best O/U for $10,000 would be about as likely as finding Edward Greens on sale at Target for $35 a pair! Purdey current ask GBP 55,000 for an O/U on the Woodward action. Even this pales in comparison to Boss' price of GBP 75,000 (pre VAT)!

Let's look at the shotgun analogy in another way. The Remington 870 is a marvelous piece of machinery, but it has no pretensions to elegance. A few years ago I blew some inheritance money on a Spanish Grulla side by side. Had I paid full retail, it would have cost about $6,000 or $7,000. In terms of functionality, elegance of line, etc., it is pretty much indistinguishable from a Purdey costing GBP 46,500. The engraving on the Purdey would be more delicate and refined. The wood would have somewhat nicer figure, and that's about it for a price differential of $77,000--just not worth it to me (even if I had that kind of money to blow)! Or, I could have spent $15,000 or so for a top of the line Grulla, such as the King of Spain shoots. And what would justify the $68,000 price differential between that gun and the Purdey? Probably nothing more than the name "Purdey" on the barrels! In other words, I am not averse to paying a premium for elegance--or I would have stuck with my 870 that I paid $80 for back when--but I like to get good value at whatever level I make my purchases. If I were solely concerned with functionality, I could probably content myself with the $25 specials at DSW and be damned to Allen-Edmonds!
I used to think that way--way back when I started out in shooting, hunting, and handloading. Actually, rather than Remington, I started out with Browning (rifles), but once I had laid my hands on a Champlin via George Caswell (JLibourel, you probably know him), it was all over. One could say that the differences between my Browning refined-Mauser, FN-actioned rifle and my first Champlin didn't amount to much functionally, and, in truth, they both went bang when I pulled the trigger, but the intense enjoyment I got from carrying that Champlin 7 RM on one trip after another--soaking up the incredible blends of fiery color and swirling figure in the English walnut stock, Maurice Ottmar's wonderful shaping (the analogy would be the EG 888 last, sleek and slim) and checkering, the super-slick action with none of the side-to-side slop of any Mauser derivative, the short lock time, the superbly-accurate barrel, the subtle rust-blued metalwork, the wonderful balance--made that expenditure worth much more than I actually paid. I was hooked, and it sure didn't stop with that first one. Perazzis for trap and Beretta sidelocks weren't far behind. The phenomenon is identical--as far as I can tell--with fine shoes. My first A-Es looked pretty decent to me, but once I saw and handled EGs, there was just no going back. So I think that this thread has seen posts from people at the poles of a continuum running from what Sartorially Challenged has labeled "value orientation" to the opposite pole, which we might label "refinement" or "esthetic" orientation. I suspect that most SFers are somewhere more towards the middle of the normal distribution that describes this continuum. There's certainly no denying, however, that participating in these forums seems to have shifted the mean of the distribution upwards somewhat towards the "esthetic orientation" pole. BTW, JLibourel, why Grulla? Is Aya no longer producing side-by-side H&H-type sidelocks?
post #83 of 90
Roger, it is obvious from your comments about guns that you are in a very different economic bracket from me. Anyone who runs about the woods with a Champlin rifle and acquires multiple Perazzis, Beretta sidelocks and whatnot is unlikely to be daunted by the comparatively modest cost acquiring Edward Greens in preference to less expensive makes of shoes. Perhaps your carefully honed connoisseur's eye magnifies the differences between EG and A-E that strike me as relatively minor. Perhaps it is "sour grapes" on my part that leads me to me minimize the differences between A-E and EG, making a virtue of necessity.

My impression is that AyA has slipped considerably from their erstwhile position of pre-eminence among the Basque shotgun makers. Arrieta, Arrizabalaga and Grulla are some of the top names today. The Turks have really taken a lot of the more popularly priced business away from the poor Basques in recent years.
post #84 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by JLibourel
Well, as long we are using women as analogies, let's get down to commercial transactions. Let's say, Jose, we are visiting a whorehouse. One the one hand is a very good looking hooker with a pleasant personality who agrees to "do" you for $150. Would you turn her down in favor of one who is inarguably somewhat better looking but wants $500 or $850 for the same services? Not me!
As stated, this is temporary while you wear good shoes for decades, but I think it's a fair statement of preferences, with either choice having its merits. We each simply desire the best in certain things while settling for the adequate in others.

However, you really should see the shoes before you pass judgment.
post #85 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by JLibourel
Roger, it is obvious from your comments about guns that you are in a very different economic bracket from me. Anyone who runs about the woods with a Champlin rifle and acquires multiple Perazzis, Beretta sidelocks and whatnot is unlikely to be daunted by the comparatively modest cost acquiring Edward Greens in preference to less expensive makes of shoes. Perhaps your carefully honed connoisseur's eye magnifies the differences between EG and A-E that strike me as relatively minor. Perhaps it is "sour grapes" on my part that leads me to me minimize the differences between A-E and EG, making a virtue of necessity.
JLibourel, I should set the record straight here, as I really don't want to convey the wrong impression. I acquired pretty much all of my collection by wheeling and dealing, haunting gun shows, trading and more trading--with some really lucky and spectacular results in a few cases--pinching pennies, and never, ever buying retail. I also have a wife who has always encouraged me to indulge myself and who has actually bought me some of this. We're both academic professionals, albeit with four children, and we have had to be very careful with our finances. As a result, I have purchased my only pair of new JLobbs from eBay, and acquired one pair of EGs from a fellow forumer. I have to space out my purchases of high-end shoes, and will never have a shoe wardrobe that rivals Aportnoy's or Sysdoc's, both of whom have exquisite taste and from whom I've learned. So, although I definitely do have champagne tastes (as does my wife), I don't really have a champagne income (what university professor does?). I've been struck by the similarities between my gun-collecting and my shoe purchasing. And I sense that there are a fair number of forumers who have the same appreciation and need for the authentic, exquisite, and beautiful. I'm not sure I've sunk any more into shoes than you have with your massive collection of A-Es plus some others; just a different distribution of the funds, I think.
post #86 of 90
Roger, If you have been able to acquire a Champlin rifle and multiple Perrazis, etc. on a typical academic salary (I am assuming from the tenor of your post that you are not a highly paid "superstar" professor), you have evidently been able to use your wits and financial acumen to a remarkable degree. My hat is off to you. I have never been very shrewd or good at that sort of thing!
post #87 of 90
I was able to find Plal but what'sthe link for Franco's?
Thanks
post #88 of 90
post #89 of 90
Quote:
Finding a new London best O/U for $10,000 would be about as likely as finding Edward Greens on sale at Target for $35 a pair!
Sorry, I meant $100,000, not $10,000.
Quote:
I am not averse to paying a premium for elegance
Elegance is one part of the equation. Exclusivity is another. Then there is branding, symbolism, if you will, which engages that emotional aspect of one's purchase decision making process.

As for the top of the line Grulla vs. Purdey thing the same goes. Hey, there are people who just have to have that pony name on their SAA even though functionally identical gun is available for half (or less) from other makers.

Or for that matter, one can probably buy no-name sneakers for $10 that are functionally no different than $140 Nike's.
post #90 of 90
I´d like to praise the C&J Handgrades as offering much of the quality of the EG at a somewhat more attractive price (I found a pair of Whitehalls with the 330 last on sale).

Although fit is a very personal issue, I find the Handgrades to be extremely comfortable - moreso than my A-Es and Sargents. They seem to be relatively pliable and conformed right away to my somewhat flat feet. That means really good value for money for this former broken Achilles tendon sufferer.

Steve
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