Cross post from another thread. Got some ST James II in E width. I already went up half from my normal size.
They seem to be a bit tight up top since I have a medium to high instep. So I can't really close them fully now. Do I need an F width? They do feel uncomfortable after about an hour of wearing them without moving.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
I feel your pain. I have a high instep as well. As long as the rest of the shoe fits well, I can't worry about the lacing gap. It just is what it is. I would not sacrifice fit by getting a wider size just to attempt to close the gap.
That being said....these pics do not look bad at all. I would be quite happy with a gap like that. I never expect my shoes to close up like they do in the press shots with shoe trees in them. Although they do for some lucky bastards. haha