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Gaziano & Girling Appreciation & Shoe Appreciation Theard - Page 799

post #11971 of 13324


Porn interlude - just bought from G&G on Savile Row, a pair of Mitchells on the Deco last in midnight blue calf.
post #11972 of 13324
Quote:
Originally Posted by grc1 View Post



Porn interlude - just bought from G&G on Savile Row, a pair of Mitchells on the Deco last in midnight blue calf.

 

    eggcellent

post #11973 of 13324
Quote:
Originally Posted by hoodog View Post

Not taking into account "the working man", pensions, labor conflicts, globalization, market economics, ignorant consumers etc etc, are you all saying that in general, shoes like Vass are of better quality than the likes of ie G&G/EG/JL, just because of the welt construction? Is the conclusion that in every other objective aspect, Vass and the others are, at least, at the same level?? If so, then this is certainly news to me...

What is "quality?" How is it defined? Is it shine? Is it finish? Is it shape of last? Is it the box? The name on the sockliner, perhaps?

I would argue that none of those things...singly, or in combination...defines or comprises "quality." It's all magpie glitter. Sequins and rhinestones.

You speak about objective aspects...what objective aspects if not methods of construction and materials?

What is the difference between a calf skin tanned and finished by Annonay and one tanned and finished in Italy? Or China? Aside from substance and finish, the answer is most probably nothing, or nothing significant. What is the difference between Horween Shell and Japanese shell...again, not much. It comes down to finish mostly.

So what's left? Styles? Design? Again, all these are subjective and transient aspects...they are not objective. Tomorrow wide square toes will be in fashion again and antique finishes considered prissy and belabouring of the leather.

To be fair, I would say that the tightness of the stitching on the upper, the way the edges are handled, the use of a good quality linings...these are minor but contributory aspects of quality that I associate with G&G. As well as Vass. And which I look for and expect (as should anyone who considers himself an aficionado) in every high end, high priced shoe. But again, they are techniques, methods of construction--they are substantive aspects, not superficial aspects.

Similarly, the overall method of construction (GY vs HW) reflects quality...or lack thereof. Do you think that a G&G that was cement construction would be as good a quality as a pair of HW Vass? As a pair of HW anything? Or is it just because of the name? Is it brand name cachet that gives the cement construction a pass?

Because, when you get down to essentials--critical, objective considerations--GY is, at bottom, a variation of cement construction.

To your entirely subjective perspective, antiquing, shine, shape of last, box, etc., might make the shoes irresistibly attractive. But they don't constitute "quality."

So, is handwelting the be all and end all?The defining hallmark of quality? Well, from my perspective--as someone who has seen "under the cover"--it is at least one of the major components. So the correct answer is...all other things being equal..."yes."

And I return to a point--when you take away the glitter, what's left to distinguish a $2000.00 pair of RTW from a $200.00 pair of RTW?

The correct answer, the objective answer, is very damn little.

As with most elements of style, and more to the point "quality," it is the unseen things, the subtle things that determine quality. The nuances and difficult techniques that didn't have to be done but, nevertheless, were done simply because the maker cared.

Almost nothing that is immediately apparent signifies.

--
Edited by DWFII - 5/15/14 at 7:44am
post #11974 of 13324
Quote:
Originally Posted by hoodog View Post

Not taking into account "the working man", pensions, labor conflicts, globalization, market economics, ignorant consumers etc etc, are you all saying that in general, shoes like Vass are of better quality than the likes of ie G&G/EG/JL, just because of the welt construction? Is the conclusion that in every other objective aspect, Vass and the others are, at least, at the same level?? If so, then this is certainly news to me...

Depends on how much you prefer heat form plastic toe box and heel counters. If you don't want man made materials inside the guts of your shoes then you should go for Vass.
post #11975 of 13324
Quote:
Originally Posted by chogall View Post

Depends on how much you prefer heat form plastic toe box and heel counters.

I didn't know that.

Sad. frown.gif
post #11976 of 13324
Quote:
Originally Posted by DWFII View Post

And I return to a point--when you take away the glitter, what's left to distinguish a $2000.00 pair of RTW from a $200.00 pair of RTW?

 

Agreeing with your whole statement, I find this point really interesting.

 

In particular it is hard to describe, but there is certainly ease of use for the owner. My LM Meermin's require many trips to the cobbler and my classic line pair have their own troubles. My Carminas, while not hand welted, have virtually no trouble.

 

It is completely in line with what you're saying about the making caring, because Carmina clearly puts more effort into QC than Meermin.

It boils down to that it can be incredibly hard to tell without owning and wearing the pair yourself. By all accounts the Meermin has better construction, finish, polish and leather than the Carminas, yet I find them to be a vastly inferior shoe.

 

Part of what you pay for with G&G is the confidence that your item will be structurally defect free (and ideally cosmetically perfect too). For those with more money and less time or patience, this is a good trade off.

post #11977 of 13324
Quote:
Originally Posted by chogall View Post

Depends on how much you prefer heat form plastic toe box and heel counters. If you don't want man made materials inside the guts of your shoes then you should go for Vass.

Whut -- G&G uses plastic stiffeners? Can you share some Men's Ex dissection photo or similar of this?
post #11978 of 13324
Quote:
Originally Posted by MSchapiro View Post

Part of what you pay for with G&G is the confidence that your item will be structurally defect free (and ideally cosmetically perfect too). For those with more money and less time or patience, this is a good trade off.

My experience is currently at odds with your theory. As it would seem that paying more money does not always mean you get structurally (or cosmetically) defect free shoes, in less time...
post #11979 of 13324

While you have had a bad experience, it seems to be to be much less serve than what I have experienced with Meermin :). No nails coming through your floor bed or stiching ripping at the back, not to discount the problems you have.

Also that was an MTO, where as I was referring to the RTW premium.

post #11980 of 13324

Alright, time for some porn.


 

More Westbury pics! (Click to show)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More Arran pics! (Click to show)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

post #11981 of 13324
Quote:
Originally Posted by chogall View Post

Depends on how much you prefer heat form plastic toe box and heel counters.

I do not think a "heat form plastic toe box and heel counters" have ever existed..

The most commonly used stiffener in GW work is the 'celastic' type:

Quote:
......the puff is of a cotton ply base is impregnated with celluloid and before treatment is fairly soft. It is conditioned usually by being passed through a number of rollers impregnated with acetone or acetone-type solvent. After such treatment the celluloid partially dissolves in the the acetone, leaving the puff in an extremly soft and workable condition. Such condition can be controlled in length of time by the type of solvent used in softening.....may be obtained in almost any substance or any shape and the skive maybe lengthened and shortened at will......the edge maybe treated so that the extreme edge of the skive never sets hard, thus eliminating the hard edge one sometimes feels in shoes with very light vamp linings.

J H Thornton "Textbook of Footwear Manufacture" (third edition 1964) pages 302/3


There used to be a "hot puff" method using (stiff) tar-impregnated material, which subsequently got softened in a heated press, but I believe this isn't used any more as the celastic is far more flexible. Certainly preferable to a "one -size-fits-all" and crudely skived leather toe puff. Firms like EG and JL use the celastic at the toe only but leather at the heal. (I do not know whether G&G ready-to-wear uses celastic on the toe, but it's quite possible.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by VRaivio View Post

Whut -- G&G uses plastic stiffeners? Can you share some Men's Ex dissection photo or similar of this?

Has anyone ever complained about their EG or JL shoes developing ugly creases across the toe cap? Maybe there is something to be said for this system (which has been in use since the 1920s, long before the invention of plastic materials).
post #11982 of 13324
Quote:
Originally Posted by bengal-stripe View Post

... the celastic is far more flexible. Certainly preferable to a "one -size-fits-all" and crudely skived leather toe puff. Firms like EG and JL use the celastic at the toe only but leather at the heal. (I do not know whether G&G ready-to-wear uses celastic on the toe, but it's quite possible.)

Anything can be done crudely. But in truth I think the celastic toe stiffener lends itself to crude far more readily than a leather toe box.

Have you ever seen a celastic stiffener? Celastic stiffeners are not skived to a feather at the back edge. Because they go in "wet" (with acetone) and the toe of the vamp usually immediately lasted over the wet puff...to create a bond between the vamp and the puff...that edge often never does get refined so that it can blend into the lines of the last and shoe as it should.

Of all the bespoke shoes and boots I've ever seen, I've seen far more where the outlines of the celastic toe puff is visible than I have seen with leather toe puffs. In either case it's a sure sign that the making is still a little rough around the edges.

And FWIW,although I don't know for sure (such things are "above my pay grade") I do think that heat formed plastic stiffeners exist. Most commercial needle toe boots have plastic toe stiffeners that I suspect were shaped over the last. If companies can heat mould entire soles to the bottom of running shoes...and I've seen the machines and read about the process when I was subscribed to World Footwear (?) magazine...they can certainly heat mould a toe puff onto a shoe. Heck, they wouldn't even have to mould it to the shoe...just the last, to be inserted later.
post #11983 of 13324
Quote:
Originally Posted by MSchapiro View Post

While you have had a bad experience, it seems to be to be much less serve than what I have experienced with Meermin smile.gif. No nails coming through your floor bed or stiching ripping at the back, not to discount the problems you have.
Also that was an MTO, where as I was referring to the RTW premium.
I will try to reply with as little snark as possible smile.gif

This has not been my first experience with a GG MTO issue. On both occasion it took quite some time to fix, and they both involved structural repairs.

This pair had to have the soles removed to address the issue at hand, and then re-soled. You be the judge on which example was more severe.

All I'm trying to say is that even when you throw money at the prospect of getting a better shoe, the end result is never guaranteed...
Edited by JubeiSpiegel - 5/15/14 at 3:03pm
post #11984 of 13324
Quote:
Originally Posted by JubeiSpiegel View Post

My experience is currently at odds with your theory. As it would seem that paying more money does not always mean you get structurally (or cosmetically) defect free shoes, in less time...

Quote:
Originally Posted by MSchapiro View Post

While you have had a bad experience, it seems to be to be much less serve than what I have experienced with Meermin smile.gif. No nails coming through your floor bed or stiching ripping at the back, not to discount the problems you have.
Also that was an MTO, where as I was referring to the RTW premium.

I'll chime in and say I've only ever seen two of the three RTW GGs I ordered. One has held up great and is a solid shoe. The other had issues that required a return to the factory for more than one issue. You can imagine my trepidation at figuring out which way the third will go. The line"...fool me twice, shame on me" comes to mind.

I'm not questioning the entire company, but it's certainly not a foregone conclusion you'll get structurally defect free shoes.
post #11985 of 13324
Quote:
Originally Posted by grc1 View Post



Porn interlude - just bought from G&G on Savile Row, a pair of Mitchells on the Deco last in midnight blue calf.

Beautiful - love the last and color.
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