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Straight and to the point... AE or Alden

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

I am in a dilemma about ordering shoes internationally. Currently, I am in Cairo, Egypt, and let's just say, men's dress shoes is a nightmare here. Back in America, I have a pair of Allen Edmonds Black in size 7.5D. I didn't bring them because they are to funeral-ish for me, and just very boring. Before leaving Boston, I tried to find a good pair of Brown or Burgundy dress shoes, but being short on time, I ended up trying on some Peals at BB on Newbury Street. They didn't have much choices, and I wasn't really wanting another pair of Allen Edmonds. I ended up getting a pair of Peal Cap Toes, but they were 7.5E and too wide and long, so I took them back before I left. The wide width was just too much. The thing is that the Allen Edmond Park Avenue's that I have back in America fit very well, and I was measured at a Nordstrom's store.

 

The only problem was that they were pretty snug on the top of the foot (forefoot). Otherwise length and width were great. The thing I'm not to keen on is the bulkiness of AE. Alden has something about them that I just like better in terms of looks. There's something about Alden that just looks sleeker. The issue is that I have to order these, and ship them all the way to Egypt. It's expensive, and there won't be any return shipping. I did some research and I hear that the Hampton last fits similar to the #5 Park Avenue last. The only question, is, how similar? If they are more flat on the top/tighter on the forefoot, than I will just avoid them. If the length and width is about spot on with the Park Avenues, but the height is the same or higher, then I may consider the Aldens.

 

Lastly, the last question I have is the metal shank, which is also holding me back. In Cairo, there are many metal detectors, and I may be required to go through one everyday. I don't think the metal detectors are ultra sensitive, but will the Aldens set most metal detectors off. To my knowledge and experience, Allen Edmonds have no metal shank, and cause no issues with metal detectors.

post #2 of 16
That post was hardly straight to the point.
post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 

Well, the question is, I did all of the explaining to filter out dumb comments/responses.

 

To reiterate, Allen Edmonds Park Avenyes, will have the safer fit, and won't set off metal detectors, but what will Aldens do in the Hampton last, and how will the fit?
 

post #4 of 16
arorakevin, the Hampton last is narrow in the toe, slightly wider than the Aberdeen last. Your concern about space in the toebox may steer you away from the Hampton. Hopefully others will ring in on this.
Study the chart here


(RIght-Click and select 'Open In New Window' to see full size. Photo can be further enlarged by holding CTRL and the + key in the new window)

As far as AE, they are indeed shankless so you have already answered your own question on that.
The AE Park Avenue is most certainly not 'too funeralish'. As it already works for you, you may want to have them mailed to you.
You can also order another pair in any of six different flavours, and they are currently on sale!
http://www.allenedmonds.com/aeonline/producti_SF270_1_40000000001_-1

You also stated that shoes available in Cairo are nightmares. Would you be so kind as to provide a link or two of some local shoe stores in Cairo? I myself would like to see these nightmares.
post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 

http://www.firstmallcairo.com/listStores.aspx?CatID=15 is probably the only place that would have "decent" shoes. They mostly carry big sizes, have a limited selection, and the only things on sale are a bit ridiculous. In Cairo, you'll find numerous Made in China shoes in downtown that will break in a day, but then again, not many people would want to maintain a good quality pair of shoes in Cairo, because/after all, it is Cairo and the roads are very dirty and dusty. Nothing like you would find in the states.

post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 

After thinking and reading through this, I now remember that the issue with the Park Avenue wasn't the toe box, but the instep, or on top of the foot where the laces are. It always caused pain there. It seems like the Hampton based shoes have a higher instep, so maybe Alden might be the way to go. I could be wrong though. It just seems that the uniform-ish look of the Park Avenue makes a very "flat"shoe, and that is probably what caused issues for me.  I'm just concerned mostly about length. If they are most likely spot on with a pair of Park Avenues in terms of length, I think I will take the risk of getting the Aldens. Let me know if that sounds like a possible outcome.

post #7 of 16

I think it is really a matter of preference - I personally like my Aldens

post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by arorakevin View Post

Well, the question is, I did all of the explaining to filter out dumb comments/responses.

 

To reiterate, Allen Edmonds Park Avenyes, will have the safer fit, and won't set off metal detectors, but what will Aldens do in the Hampton last, and how will the fit?
 


Lol, all that effort, and it still didn't work.

post #9 of 16
TLDR

Alden is better.
post #10 of 16
Alden is more exclusive so therefore MUST be better.

AE are dimes a dozen, even on sale on Landsend, so loses all respect by the wannabes.
post #11 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liquidus View Post

That post was hardly straight to the point.

This

Quote:
Originally Posted by guymac12 View Post

I think it is really a matter of preference - I personally like my Aldens

 This, but I like AE

Quote:
Originally Posted by lee_44106 View Post

Alden is more exclusive so therefore MUST be better.
AE are dimes a dozen, even on sale on Landsend, so loses all respect by the wannabes.

Unless you're posting pic's on a site like this, I don't think that you'll ever actually talk to any of the "wannabes."

post #12 of 16
While I like AE, I prefer Aldens over them.
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post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by lee_44106 View Post

Alden is more exclusive so therefore MUST be better.
AE are dimes a dozen, even on sale on Landsend, so loses all respect by the wannabes.

 

This mentality is exactly what keeps Alden in business.  Alden makes a fantastic product, no question about it.  However, I have never seen any truely objective evidence to support that they truely are better shoes across the board.  Obviously some of their models are better than AE, but the opposite holds true as well.  There are numerous threads on this site with people debating this issue, and I enjoy reading through them.  Some of the treads get quite heated up, and it always ends up with people agreeing to disagree.  Many people feel that Alden has an edge because they have models with 270 degree welts, which makes them more "refined."  AE only makes 360 welted shoes.  This has nothing to do with the shoe being inferior.  Alden makes shoes with 360 welts too.  Many people will carry to their grave that the steel shank makes Alden better.  The problem is, and there are some esteemed bespoke shoe makers on this site that can substantiate this, steel shanks are not needed unless you have heels above one inch in height.  Neither Alden nor Allen Edmonds have greater than one inch heels.  Both shoe makers obtain their raw materials from reputable companies (Horween Leather for example).  Allen Edmonds being a larger company means that they will have more shoes in the market place.  This makes them more readily available.  This means that more AE's are sold.  This means that their prices can be lower.  This equation does not make Alden better because they are rarer unless you want a rarer shoe.  Again, this equation adds up to subjectivity. 

post #14 of 16

Hello everyone,

 

I'm supersede, and I joined this blog to ask these questions.

 

Please give me your expertise and help me to find the shoes (and briefcase) that I desire. Thanks.

 

I wear a size 10 B in the Allen Edmonds "Grayson" (or newer model "Adams") tassel loafer, and they are the most comfortable shoes I own. I wear a size 10.5 B in the Alden tassel loafer (whose name, if there is one, I don't know), and they are the most beautiful shoes I own. I wear a size 10 B in the Johnston & Murphy "Westchester" tassel loafer, and they are fine shoes too, but I prefer the previous two.

 

I would like to find a barely-worn pair of tassel loafers or "full strap" penny loafers (by Alden or Allen Edmonds, which also calls its full strap model the "Westchester"). I am also interested in the Allen Edmonds "Patriot" penny loafer, preferably with a leather and rubber combination sole and heel. I would like to find a black or a wine/burgundy pair.

 

In addition, please tell me what size to order in the Gokey Sauvage oxford, casual moccasin-style shoe (sold new by Orvis), which I have been told requires one half size larger than usual and one size wider. If this advice is correct, then I figure I should get a 10.5 C in that casual shoe. I would have to pay $50 more for a new pair ($275), because the "regular" pair ($225) sizes begin with a "D" width.

 

Finally, I am interested in finding a classic-styled briefcase, with the single clasp flap, single handle, which reflects quality craftsmanship. Rawlings used to offer a "legal-styled" brief bag, new, for around $500, but no longer offers that model.

 

Best wishes,

 

supersede

post #15 of 16

MOL has really useful information, but to be honest, when ordering internationally, I'd go with AE. Their CS is basically second to none, they replace things, they make up for shoddy QC. They're kind and attentive. Alden sort of blows you off. 

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