Originally Posted by Snedley
You said you were jus out of Uni so I assumed you were 22 or so. It seemed odd that one of the first pair of shoes you would buy on your own would be the most expensive. Just buy a pair of AE Westchester in black and you'll do fine. They'll fit well and fit in well. If they're good enough for the billionaire mayor of NYC they'll be fine for you.
I'm sorry, but this is the most piece of shit advice I've ever heard. Buy a pair of shoes because you absolutely love them. If that's a pair of Allen Edmonds, great. If it's a pair of G&G's, so be it. Just because Bloomberg wears Allen Edmonds doesn't mean they're great for this guy (although I appreciate BBG is repping American made). The things you should factor in are aesthetics, fit, construction, and the environment / situation. To be honest, the shoe purchases I've been the happiest with are the ones that I go, "Woah" when I first seem them. For some people that's obnoxious Corthay bright green single eyelet derbys. For others, it's tankers from Alden. Inform yourself as well as you can from the online forums and in stores, but don't ever take advice from someone who says, "Get these because so and so wears them". That's the quickest way to disappointment.
That being said, a well made shoe in your price range that I happen to enjoy for most of the reasons I listed above are Carmina. Check them out at their webstore and for purchase at Epaulet and The Armoury.