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Justification prices highend shoes

post #1 of 52
Thread Starter 
Hi there,
Been lurking on the forum for a few weeks now. What brought me here was dissatisfaction with the shoes that are offered in my home city Rotterdam.

In my late twenties I often bought business casual shoes from Hugo and must say I used wear them with great pleasure, I liked their style and found the quality to be quite decent for the money. I am now in my early thirties and I am finding that the style of Hugo shoes and most other trendy designer fashion brands with similar styles offered here in Rotterdam like Prada, RB, Gucci do not appeal to me anymore.

Browsing the forum I have really taken a liking to the highend shoes by Alden and G&G, but I am having a hard time justifying their prices. How I see it at the moment, is that a pair of decent quality Hugo's would set me back about 250 euro's and a pair of shoes by Alder of G&G would set me back about 750 euro's. A pretty steep price difference!

As I see it now the highend shoes offer:
-\tA nicer styled shoe
-\tA presumably better made shoe
-\tShoes from presumably higher quality leather
-\tShoes with a presumably better and more durable sole

In my noob opinion an estimated 30-40% better shoe at 300% higher price. The 300% higher price tag is what is currently withholding me from buying a pair. I just can not seem to justify laying down such serious clout for the shoes without a sound justification. Please explain to a noob just what the extra 500 euro's is buying me and if you think the extra clout is actually worth it? If not, what alternatives are their available (shoes with a better "style & quality"/price ratio)?

Thanks,
Michael.
post #2 of 52
I actually had this conversation with a coworker yesterday.

If you look at it rationally, the justification explains itself. Your foot contains 25% of the bones in your body, supports your entire frame and is what essentially allows you to move.

If you do not properly support it, and that includes wearing shoes that are the proper width, proper length, and the proper shape, the following occur: foot problems, back problems, and knee problems.

This of course is not even taking into account the style, quality, etc. I'm of the opinion if you're building a wardrobe, the first thing you purchase for yourself is a legit pair of shoes. The difference between an average suit and a great suit is significantly less than the difference between an average pair of shoes and a great pair of shoes.

The most important thing for you to do is to get properly measured and wearing a proper fitting last. Alden has approximately 9 popular lasts, I can only wear the Aberdeen. You may be similar or the complete opposite and not be able to wear the Aberdeen.
post #3 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelvl View Post
Please explain to a noob just what the extra 500 euro's is buying me and if you think the extra clout is actually worth it?Thanks,
Michael.
If it's a shoe you like, want, and can afford, then it's worth it. All the justification I need.
post #4 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by usctrojans31 View Post
Your foot contains 25% of the bones in your body, supports your entire frame and is what essentially allows you to move.

If you do not properly support it, and that includes wearing shoes that are the proper width, proper length, and the proper shape, the following occur: foot problems, back problems, and knee problems.

The most important thing for you to do is to get properly measured and wearing a proper fitting last.

Sage advice. Fit over fashion. Be sure to try on a lot of different shoes and get advice from a competent fitter.
post #5 of 52
For about EUR 500-600 you can get a pair of beautiful Santoni "fatte a mano" which in any reasonable rotation scheme, will last you for years, and years. Wonderful leather and nice design. If in doubt abut G&G etc., why not step up to Santoni first, and then see how you feel? Personally, I feel like staying on the Santoni level for a few years more.
post #6 of 52
Consider Crockett & Jones benchgrade and Tricker's: both very decent shoes at around 360 €. And you can find them on sale. It's very difficult to find Alden shoes in Europe without a hefty mark-up.
post #7 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by michaelvl View Post
As I see it now the highend shoes offer: -\tA nicer styled shoe -\tA presumably better made shoe -\tShoes from presumably higher quality leather -\tShoes with a presumably better and more durable sole In my noob opinion an estimated 30-40% better shoe at 300% higher price. The 300% higher price tag is what is currently withholding me from buying a pair. I just can not seem to justify laying down such serious clout for the shoes without a sound justification. Please explain to a noob just what the extra 500 euro’s is buying me and if you think the extra clout is actually worth it? If not, what alternatives are their available (shoes with a better "style & quality"/price ratio)?
It's actually more than 30-40% better for many cases. - Soles: Rubber vs. leather, glued vs. stitched. Depending on how the sole is made and attached, the shoe's longevity can be stretched must longer if made with quality. - Leather: Quality of the leather also makes a huge difference. Shoes make from cheaper corrected grain leather will look just as nice as good leather when new but after 6 months of daily use, the difference will be apparent. Just the combination of these two factors can be the difference between a shoe that falls apart in 1-2 years versus one that lasts for 10-15. And I have worn many shoes where soles start to fall apart after a year. Also, not to say you should buy shoes because of their resale value, but the fact that some brands of shoes have high resale value is an indicator of generally how well the shoe stood the test of time.
post #8 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayJay View Post
If it's a shoe you like, want, and can afford, then it's worth it. All the justification I need.

"Afford" is so relative...lol.
post #9 of 52
It is sometimes hard to justify the extra cost, but I must say that after buying my first pair of Aldens after wearing mostly Loakes in the past I can feel the difference and it is worth it to me. I wish I could justify every pair I want, but I can't. I will still wear my older Loakes, but continue to save for more Aldens. I think what makes them so worthwhile to me is the Alden flex welt and oiled sole that is so flexible and comfortable for all day use. It is almost like not having any on your feet.
post #10 of 52
I have no trouble justifying the cost. Consider the materials and skilled labor that go into a pair of shoes. Good shoes are worth it.
post #11 of 52
Go to a shop that carries quality English shoes like C&J and try on various models of different lasts to see what last/size you are in those brands. Then go online to a site like Pedawear and buy a pair. You can get good C&J, Trickers, or a few good Italian brands for around EUR 350 or less. Aldens are fine, but the price mark-up in Europe is extremely high. Plus, at EUR 750 those are probably cordovan models (ie, horse leather).
post #12 of 52
Well, Michael - you've taken the first treacherous step. I also found the Style Forum when looking for shoes and I have to say it's been an eye-opening experience, as well as a wallet-lightening one.

Once you've tried the better shoes you'll probably find it hard to go back.

Have fun!

jh
post #13 of 52
I can't fully justify it but still buy them
post #14 of 52
It isn't a matter of justification in the sense of "defending or making excuses for." If you want to know why a higher priced shoe costs like it does, you will need to look more deeply at the process--what it takes to build a shoe; and what quality of materials are used in higher priced shoes; and how much forethought is given to the techniques and the end results of choosing those techniques. I think it goes without saying that many higher priced shoes command a greater premium than can be justified (in the sense of "defending or making excuses for"). Sometimes there's not a real significant difference between a $200.00 shoe and a $800.00 shoe...not in materials, not in techniques, not in any substantive aspect. In fact, in many...maybe even most...cases the only real difference is in the cachet that is attached to the brand name. That said, I suspect that if one needs a justification for buying a higher priced shoe... 1) that person doesn't know enough about shoes to really appreciate the "ineffable" () nuances of quality and styling associated with higher prices; 2) that person is wasting his/her money at almost any price level beyond that which places least stress on the wallet; 3) that person is really buying peer approval rather than an objective quality;. 4) a person who does not understand quality, does not appreciate the differences between various materials or techniques, who buys on a recommendation or marketing hype, will always be at the mercy of forces outside their control.
post #15 of 52
FWIW - I'm sure a lot of members on here would be willing to proxy for you for a marginal fee since Alden is readily available here throughout a variety of mediums .

If you're looking at around 750 euros for a pair of Aldens that are likely shell, today's currency conversion has you spending $957.03. That same pair would sell in the States for $550-$600; assume an international shipping fee to you of $40-$50. So we'll roughly say that a pair of shell Aldens in the US plus the delivery fee to you would cost you only $650 versus the $957 you would be spending. Assume a 10% of your savings proxy fee and you're looking at saving about $270 or 211 euros.
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