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Allen-Edmonds Park Avenue for both casual and dress?

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
Hi, I'm 24yro working in an engineering office environment in Scottsdale AZ. The typical work environment is casual (a third in jeans, a third in khakis and polos, and a third a little nicer in dress pants and shirts). I usually dress in the khaki and dress pants group and was hoping for a pair of shoes that would work with both of these groups, and perhaps a suit too. Comfort is very important since I would be wearing them at least 8-9hrs/day.

So to summarize:
-Comfortable
-Can be worn with khakis, business casual, and a suit

Do Allen-Edmonds Park Avenue shoes for this description? I really like the traditional style, but didn't know if they went with such a broad range of dress. What do you think? Does such a shoe exist? Any other recommendations in the $200-400 range? Thanks for your time.
post #2 of 33
Welcome to the board! I would advise buying something other than the Park Avenues, as they are quite dressy. They are very plain and simple (which generally means "dressy,") and they are balmorals (meaning that the two pieces of leather that contain the eyelets are attached at their bottoms). Instead, AE makes a style called the Colton, which is a punched captoe blucher. "Blucher" (if you're not familiar with the term) is any shoe where the pieces of leather that contain the eyelets are open flaps. Bluchers are less dressy, and the perforations also dress the Colton down.

In this price range, several companies make shoes you might like. AE, Alden, Trickers, Crockett and Jones (I think), Loake 1880's, and Grenson (again, I think) are some that come to mind.
post #3 of 33
Some might say that bluchers would be more appropriate for casual wear but I often wear my Park Avenues with jeans.
post #4 of 33
Park Ave's will look a little out of place with jeans. First, I'd say lose the cap-toe and go with a straight oxford, or maybe a chelsea boot. Have you looked at to boot ny? You can find probably find them for a very reasonable price on sale, and you *might* be able to find a pair that works with jeans, kakhis, and dress slacks....but it's a tall order.

I love AEs, but I can't think of any of their dress shoes that would look right with jeans. Maybe Hillcrest (bicycle front).

For some more practical advice, you should look for good shoes on sale and get one pair for dress and one for casual. Honestly, if you keep wearing the same pair 8-9 hours a day and don't have another pair to swap them with at least every other day, you will wear them out very fast.
post #5 of 33
Thread Starter 
Sorry, I didn't mean to imply I would want to wear them with jeans. Would the park avenues work with khakis, dress pants, and a suit though?
post #6 of 33
In my opinion, kakhis is still pushing it on the PA's.. The colton suggestion was good, and I still think the hillcrest might work....but at $200 - 400 I still think your best option is to buy two pair at $200.
post #7 of 33
Count me in the "no" category. I would not choose the Park Ave for either khakis or odd trousers.
post #8 of 33
jjw -

Welcome to the forum from another member in the Phoenix area. As other posters have stated, the Park Avenue's are probably a little formal for wear with jeans, although it's certainly your prerogative to do so. I would definitely consider a pair of bluchers like the Colton to wear with jeans, khakis and business suits as they are slightly more informal, but also dress up extremely well.

Another important thing to bear in mind is that, living here in Phoenix, do not pay full-price for Allen Edmond's shoes. Go to Last Chance at Camelback and 20th Street and you can buy AE's for $49.99 a pair. These are the ones that have been returned to Nordstrom's stores all over the country and are typically still in great shape. That way, you can buy several pairs for less than it would cost you to buy one pair at retail. By doing this, you can have Park Avenue's, Colton's and more in your wardrobe.

If you need more info or have question, feel free to shoot me a PM.

Brad

P.S. Kent can tell you how nice these shoes are as I purchased his Park Avenue's there and sent them to him.
post #9 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by DocHolliday
Count me in the "no" category. I would not choose the Park Ave for either khakis or odd trousers.
The PA can work for odd trousers as long as they're of a level of dressiness commensurate with the shoe. Gray flannel or dark worsted trousers sitting at the natural waist, with side tabs and/or suspender buttons rather than a belt - that's dressy, and the PA would complement that very well.

To answer the OP: get thee a Stockbridge and maybe a Hancock as well, before they're gone forever. (Discontinued models but still available in many outlets.)
post #10 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick Bateman
The PA can work for odd trousers as long as they're of a level of dressiness commensurate with the shoe. Gray flannel or dark worsted trousers sitting at the natural waist, with side tabs and/or suspender buttons rather than a belt - that's dressy, and the PA would complement that very well.

Bear in mind that he mentioned "business casual," which often includes neither coat nor tie. For that purpose, I would not suggest the Park Ave, even in brown.
post #11 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by DocHolliday
Bear in mind that he mentioned "business casual," which often includes neither coat nor tie. For that purpose, I would not suggest the Park Ave, even in brown.
Ok, so you meant to say, "I would not wear the PA with khakis or odd trousers in a business casual environment."

Thanks for the clarification.

I'm not sure where you're based but in NYC wearing brown captoe oxfords with odd trousers in a business casual environment is perfectly acceptable, jacket or no jacket, tie or no tie. One could even "get away" with the black version provided your pants were of the right shade - probably charcoal would work best.

To the OP: I have no idea what people in Scottsdale consider to be "business casual." If the standard is golf polos and khakis then people might look askance at your wearing AE's regardless of whether they are the Stockbridge or the PA. If that's the case you should just wear what makes you happy and aim for slightly higher than your peers.
post #12 of 33
I would have a hard time imagining anyone (at least anyone whose opinion you would care about, i.e., not an utter and absolute slob) looking askance at the Stockbridge with khakis. I wear the two together with great frequency.
post #13 of 33
Personally, I would not wear the Park Avenue's with khakis. Provided I had other options, I would not wear them with a "dress pants and shirt" unless I were wearing a jacket/tie. A model such as the AE Colton or Bradley would probably come closer to fitting the bill, but ideally you'd want two pair of shoes; perhaps an AE Ashton and Park Avenue -- you should be able to purchase both for under $400. You'll need to rotate them anyway!
post #14 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick Bateman
Ok, so you meant to say, "I would not wear the PA with khakis or odd trousers in a business casual environment."

Thanks for the clarification.

It's not about the environment, despite your rather rude italics. I just think Park Aves look too dressy to be worn without a jacket. Personally, I save captoe bals without broguing, in dark brown and black, for suits. Your mileage may vary.
post #15 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by DocHolliday
I save captoe bals without broguing, in dark brown and black, for suits. Your mileage may vary.
I work as a consultant in an environment where a jacket and/or tie denotes a status that is reserved for upper management, and therefore it would be inappropriate (read: it would alienate the clients I work with day to day) to wear them. I am slightly unfamiliar with the word "broguing". I just purchased some byrons (cap toe w/ perf on the cap). Does that qualify? I was 50/50 on whether or not they would be appropriate w/ shirt and trousers but I am pretty confident they'll work well.
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