Originally Posted by reidrothchild
I must've misread his post then. I read that small portion of his his post as equating $100 shoes with $500 shoes. You can't find either full grain leather or GoodYear welting for $100, so those are objectively low quality shoes. You'd have to step up to $200 to even get Meermin's lowest line/made (partially) in China shoes. And my response was more to the guy who expressed concern over the quality of his GYW shoes after reading DFWII's post. I don't disagree with his line (or yours) of thought.
I'm sorry, but I don't believe that's true. Many shoes in the $50.00 price range are full grain leather. It may not be calf skin but technically speaking a lot of the supposedly premium leather used in higher priced shoes is not calf either but closer to veal. All "full grain" means is that the hair side of the hide is still attached and hasn't been scoured or replaced with a bonded, synthetic layer.
As for the Goodyear construction, I've seen shoes with plastic
welt made using Goodyear construction.
I don't want to be a cipher but I have to say that Hendrix pretty much gets it. I was startled at how cogently he described it, as a matter of fact.
The bottom line is that I'm not against $100.00-$500.00 shoes. There's a place for everything...obviously--the demand indicates it.
But as I said, I don't see the difference that commands the higher price. I don't see how shoes costing $1000.00 can be said to be worth that much more than the $500.00 shoe. Again, the construction techniques are virtually identical. So...all else being equal, do you honestly believe that there is $500.00 more value in the leather? The pieces are all going to be just about the same size and shape for any given size. So price per square foot...??!!
Given access, I can buy the best leather in the world, import it from abroad, pay shipping, customs, and brokerage fees and not feel any real pressure to charge significantly more. And I'm not at the top of the price ladder by a long shot. But then I don't sell "blue sky" either.
Brand name is what sells the $1000.00+ shoe, not a significant difference in quality. Hell, according to some here, the box itself is worth the extra $500.00. What sells is superficiality--finish, lasts shapes (as if that had any direct bearing on fit or functionality), fashion and bragging rights. Those willing to pay for those benefits are welcome to them, including the box. All I'm doing is pointing out that the Emperor has no clothes. Perhaps not a great way to win friends at court.
All that said, my perspective is as a shoemaker, not a customer...or a groupie, or a brand or nationality whore. I don't recommend or diss any brands...deliberately...for that very reason. It isn't about the price or the cachet, or the superficial appearance for me. It's about the objective quality.
Sorry to disappoint.
PS..."crap" is relative.
--Edited by DWFII - 8/14/12 at 6:11am