I got one pair each of Fifth Ave. and Park Ave. a year or so ago. They've lasted well, though I don't wear them much, and they seem to be sturdy and comfortable. I've put toppys on them and everything is grand. HOWEVER... A few months back I bought a pair of Berkshire, and a pair of Benton. The shoes look alright, minus some discoloration on the Benton at the brogued seam. I bought 9E, the same size I wear the comfortable Fifth Ave in. The Berkshire flops off the heel on the left foot, stays put on the right. The toe box on both the Berkshire and Benton are terrible... I buy wides for comfort, but these things hurt my feet and give me blisters. The rubber sole is detaching at the toe on the Benton, and I've only wore them a hand full of times. So now when I see AE shoes online and their ridiculous prices I throw up a little in my mouth and wonder, "Why would anyone buy this when they can get some decent quality Aldens or something even better for a few hundred more?" My point being: Is AE riding on a reputation? Have the decreased in quality while maintaining high prices? Why are the Fifth Aves so much better than these two pairs of garbage that I bought this Summer?
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8/6/10 at 10:24pm