or Connect
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › Recommendations for a dress belt?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Recommendations for a dress belt? - Page 2

post #16 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by diorshoe
go to desert hills premium outlet and any select nordstrom racks.
ive got 8 different dress belts ranging from black to burgundy to different shades of brown and different textures. all good quality belts i bought for 20 or 25 dollars each. except for a J&M belt that i bought for 45 dollars.

Interestingly enough, J&M has some of the nicest belts I've seen, at low prices.
post #17 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by diorshoe
go to desert hills premium outlet and any select nordstrom racks.
ive got 8 different dress belts ranging from black to burgundy to different shades of brown and different textures. all good quality belts i bought for 20 or 25 dollars each. except for a J&M belt that i bought for 45 dollars.

I just bought a couple of belts from Macy's for $25, they are on 40% off and they are pretty sturdy, nice finish, I forget the brand name (I am not one to really pay that much attention to a belt's brand), and they have them in 4-5 shades of brown, and black of course.
post #18 of 55
yes, i mentioned in another thread about belts that my favorite is my brown J&M belt. although their shoes are crap, their belts are sweet!
made in Italy too. it was nice enough that i wanted to shell out almost 50 dollars for it.

macys has a house brand name called Alfani. they do make some decent accessories. two of my belts are alfani and do their part very well in dress.
they also carry kc, perry ellis , ck ,dkny, and polo belts.
post #19 of 55
Most of my "expensive" belts are Bruno Maglis (bought for $9.99 each at NM Last Call) or Trafalgar. Most of my belts period are mall brands, Banana mostly. I just don't care about belts much. All I ask them to do is mostly match my shoes and be cheap. However, I did notice that a seller on eBay is listing a whole bunch of belts s/he claims are Paraboots. The buckle looks kinda cheesy with the PARABOOT script but the belt itself seems to be stamped on the inside with the Paraboot logo. I have no idea of the quality, but I like both of my pairs of Paraboot shoes and wore the Avingon's today (they're one of my rain shoes). They never cease to impress me.
post #20 of 55
Thread Starter 
http://www.allenedmonds.com/webapp/w...00&imageType=2

Is it possible to get the Basic Dress belt in black with a silver buckle? The pictures that I saw on the internet suggest that it comes with a gold buckle.
post #21 of 55
Where can I find larger size belts ie 46 on the cheap?
post #22 of 55
For a dress belt,

Style: I'd recommend one with what some call a "skeleton" buckle--a simple rectangular buckle with a prong (see the Allen-Edmonds Basic Dress Belt for an example). I'd avoid large, gaudy buckles, since a dress belt should be discreet and not draw attention. Dress requires a completely-leather belt.

Size: I'd recommend one with width of either 1 1/8" or 1 1/4", never wider than 1 1/4". Your choice between these two widths is related to your height: if you're tall (say over 6 ft.), you could go to the 1 1/4"; if shorter, go with 1 1/8".

Color: You'll need a basic black belt, along with one in a mid-brown shade to start. As you progress, you can add other shades of brown, along with burgundy. These colors will provide a reasonable match to the shoes with which you will want to coordinate the belt. You can wear pretty much any shade of brown with brown shoes covering the brown spectrum, but as you acquire more belts, you will be able to bring about a closer match. An identical shade is not required (and some would say to be avoided), but a certain degree of closeness is desirable.

Quality: I've found quite good-quality leather belts for under $100, and some of these can be had on eBay or STP for around $40. I think that the Allen-Edmonds level of quality is adequate and, in my experience, quite good. Other brands that produce quite decent leather belts are: Crookhorn (who used to make the Allen-Edmonds belts), Trafalgar, Coach, Johnston & Murphy, and Zegna (a little higher priced, but available on eBay for $50 - $70). I'm sure I'm forgetting some others here. If you want to step up a little in quality, consider the Crockett & Jones belts (about $125, I think, from PLal, and, I think, available at Ben Silver too, although probably at higher prices) and the Edward Green ones (that go up from about $150 or so at Saks).

Some Other Hints: When I buy a dress belt, I purchase one in one size too large, and take it to my cobbler who cuts it to precisely the length that will allow me to fasten it in the middle hole (of 5, usually), along with attaching the buckle with snap caps (rather than stitching) so that it can be interchanged. I've made sure to buy belts that have the two buckle colors you need--silver and gold. Now, when I buy a new belt, I can interchange buckles to match other features of my dress like watch face, tie clasp, buckles on monk shoes, etc. I have one silver buckle and one gold one for 1 1/8" belts, and ditto for 1 1/4" belts. This gives me complete flexibility to match colors of both the buckle and the strap as needed.

My Own Preferences: For what it's worth, I prefer calfskin belts over exotic hides like croc, alligator, lizard, ostrich, etc. I just don't like the exotics enough to wear them at all. I particularly like dress belts with edge stitching (although with a thread that matches the color of the belt--not "tonal" stitching). To me the best-looking dress belts have that edge-stitching, and a domed shape between the edges, with the edges tapering away. I prefer two leather stays over just one. I prefer belts with nice lining on the back. My preference is for a mildly tapered form towards the tip, rather than the blunt end that you sometimes see. Over the years, I've accumulated good-quality belts in black and burgundy, along with about 8 shades of brown, ranging from a light tan to a quite dark brown, with everything in between--some with reddish tones (like a British Chestnut, which I wear with my British Chestnut-colored shoes), some with no red in them at all. My belts vary in shininess too, with some quite matte and subdued, and others very shiny. I wear the latter with highly-polished shoes.

One final thought: The guy we need to sign in to this thread is Meaculpa, our resident belt-maker. He has studied the quality of extant brands and is now making bespoke belts of superb quality. He could explain to us the variables that determine quality. So, Meaculpa, please put down your books for a few minutes and provide some enlightenment!
post #23 of 55
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sgt_Strider
http://www.allenedmonds.com/webapp/w...00&imageType=2

Is it possible to get the Basic Dress belt in black with a silver buckle? The pictures that I saw on the internet suggest that it comes with a gold buckle.

Can someone answer my question above?
post #24 of 55
Yes. You will need to order it through an AE store (possibly this can be done over the phone). Otherwise you are limited to the 'Basic Dress Belt with Engraved Buckle', picture just below on the right.
post #25 of 55
Thread Starter 
Also what do you guys think about reversible belt? I think the two colours that I really need is brown and black. Wouldn't I end up saving more money if I buy a nice reversible belt?
post #26 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger

One final thought: The guy we need to sign in to this thread is Meaculpa, our resident belt-maker. He has studied the quality of extant brands and is now making bespoke belts of superb quality. He could explain to us the variables that determine quality. So, Meaculpa, please put down your books for a few minutes and provide some enlightenment!

I had no idea meaculpa was making belts and I haven't seen him post in ages. How can I contact him? I'm trying to build a collection of good dress belts with interchangeable buckles, just as you describe. So far, I have 2 casual, harness leather belts that I *really* like, from this outfit:

http://www.leathergoodsconnection.co...madebelts.html

I also bought a belt that he calls a dress belt, but I'm using it for casual wear, too.
post #27 of 55
If I had a question about belts and wanted the most educated response, I would contact Mark Kielty (caelte above). He makes really, really great belt buckles and works with the best of the belt makers around. He has a very good finger on what is good and what is not. Unless you are looking for a really amazing belt, I think that most of the belts at 100+ are equal and pretty good. If you want one that is really a piece of art, email Mark and he will steer you in the right direction. Sorry Mark!
post #28 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by thinman
I had no idea meaculpa was making belts and I haven't seen him post in ages. How can I contact him? I'm trying to build a collection of good dress belts with interchangeable buckles, just as you describe. So far, I have 2 casual, harness leather belts that I *really* like, from this outfit:
He is Dimitri and lives in Ottawa. My guess is that you could connect with him through the SF PM function. If you have a problem, PM me, and I'll try to help.

http://www.leathergoodsconnection.co...madebelts.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinman
I also bought a belt that he calls a dress belt, but I'm using it for casual wear, too.
That's a very interesting and useful website, Thinman. I'm going to think about his straps and also his buckles. The clip-on ones would make buckle-switching a snap.
post #29 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by iammatt
If I had a question about belts and wanted the most educated response, I would contact Mark Kielty (caelte above). He makes really, really great belt buckles and works with the best of the belt makers around. He has a very good finger on what is good and what is not.

Unless you are looking for a really amazing belt, I think that most of the belts at 100+ are equal and pretty good. If you want one that is really a piece of art, email Mark and he will steer you in the right direction.

Sorry Mark!
Right on, Iammatt! If one were to do this right, he would purchase two buckles from Mark Kielty--one in sterling silver and one in gold, say 14K (rather than accumulating them from A-E belts, etc.). Or maybe four of Mark's buckles--two in 1 1/8" and two in 1 1/4". (I really like his simple sterling silver one at $165--not a bad price for a beautiful buckle; it's the gold analog that causes me to break into nervous tremors when I look over at the price.) Then he'd have the very best leather straps made up in the widths, colors, stitching patterns, and other details he wanted, each capable of being snapped onto the two buckles. I think I'd go with Meaculpa for this step. Big bucks, but the "right" way to do this.

Edit: Mark, if you're reading this: Three questions: (1) The one I asked you last year: can you make that sterling buckle in 1 1/8" width now, or still in only 1 1/4"? (2) Have you considered gold plate to reduce cost over solid gold, even 14K? Or would gold plating just rub away with use? (3) Can you put some kind of finish on sterling silver to prevent tarnishing?
post #30 of 55
Edit: Mark, if you're reading this: Three questions: (1) The one I asked you last year: can you make that sterling buckle in 1 1/8" width now, or still in only 1 1/4"? (2) Have you considered gold plate to reduce cost over solid gold, even 14K? Or would gold plating just rub away with use? (3) Can you put some kind of finish on sterling silver to prevent tarnishing?[/quote]

Hi Roger,
I've been hanging out in another forum and hadn't noticed the questions.

I haven't changed the sizes on those belt buckles.
I'm thinking about doing some new things instead.

Gold plate, and I mean vermeil, is a real possibility.

The usual plating process is not worth doing over sterling. It kills the depth of the metal. It's something that should only be done over base metal.It's not a lasting process and not easily reversed as I'll explain..

Vermeil, on the other hand, is applied in a thick layer over the sterling directly.The material is deposited on the surface the same way as plate but it is a thicker layer.Because it is directly over the surface of the sterling you "see" into the sterlng and it gives a good facsimile of gold.

Because belt buckles take a tremendous amount of abuse, you may want to restore the buckle. It's simple with vermeil.

The buckle is repolished and then re-vermeiled

With regular plate,a heavy base coat is applied before the gold.
This base coat has to be stripped, the buckle polished, the base plate reapplied, then replated with gold.

It took me awhile to find someone in the U.S. who did the genuine vermeil process.
I don't kknow what color the gold will be. I want it to look like 22k but I'll have to wait and see. I'm sending out the pieces next week.

Sterling is commonly plated with rhodium to give it a non-tarnishing surface.
I've used it on base metal but not sterling.
I might give it a shot since you mentioned it.
Personally, I like the natural state of sterling.
It can easily be brought back to new condition with a polishing cloth and will stay that way for quite awhile.

Also, I like exotic belts.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Classic Menswear
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › Recommendations for a dress belt?