Originally Posted by DpprDr
Do you have other AS shoes? From the measurements I've received in the last, the 104 seemed slightly smaller (akin to the old 99). I agree AS' leather is "stiffer" but I personally like that sturdiness. In regards to the C&J comparison, are you referring to C&J's HG or BG? My thoughts ASE runs between C&J HG and BG when it comes to quality. Just my personal thoughts. Enjoy your shoes!
I have no other AS shoes. I would say that as a 10UK, this are certainly a smaller fit. The toebox is not elongated, but more of a chiseled round toe. And the instep is very snug, notice the space in the vamp. For comparison, I consider myself having a lower instep, and in Carmina Simpson last (a snug narrow last) I can close the vamp for a very snug fit.
Funny thing is, I find the heel a bit loose in the AS104 last. But let me break them in and this may change. C&J 348 in 10UK offers me a bit more room up front, and a narrower heel which fits snug. Maybe I should have looked at the 109 last which is more elongated.
My C&J experience is limited to Lowndes in the 348 last, Bench Grade. I find the leather quite high quality, and the 348 last is a bit sleeker than the AS 104. The AS is very sexy through the waist and heel. The most interesting thing about them is the part that you walk on...
I have a lot of AE shoes, and #5 last in 11E or 11.5D are hit and miss, but never really great. I have entered into Northampton manufacturers, and this is probably where the best shoes for me are located.