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Help choosing Allen Edmonds shoes

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

I currently have the following shoes and need to decide which ones to keep and which to return, or if I should get others.

 

Fifth Avenue in Brown

Strand in Walnut

McCallister in Black

 

I don't wear suits to work, just pants and a button down.  I wear suits for other occasions, but rarely.

 

I was leaning towards the Fifth Ave for everyday wear as simple brown shoes, but now I can't decide if I want to keep the others or not...

 

Thoughts??

post #2 of 18
What do you mean, return? You haven't worn these shoes?

If you have to get rid of one of those pairs, let it be the McCallister. Great shoes, but...

If you have only one pair of black dress shoes, let it be Park Avenues, even if only for job interviews and funerals. But they do the job like nothing else, plus you can wear them with black tie.

Strands are beautiful, although I wouldn't push it with respect to formal occasions.

Otherwise, for general purpose business casual fair, I really like the brown Clifton--a very versatile shoe, and the brown Delray, which I think nails it when paired with dressy khakis and a nice shirt.
post #3 of 18
Thread Starter 

Correct, I have NOT worn these yet.  I could also get the Black PA's...

 

I plan to keep the Brown FA's as my brown shoe of choice...
 

post #4 of 18

My vote is for the Strand in Walnut...for my money it is the most versatile of the group...

post #5 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by DC Office Hack View Post

What do you mean, return? You haven't worn these shoes?

If you have to get rid of one of those pairs, let it be the McCallister. Great shoes, but...

If you have only one pair of black dress shoes, let it be Park Avenues, even if only for job interviews and funerals. But they do the job like nothing else, plus you can wear them with black tie.

Strands are beautiful, although I wouldn't push it with respect to formal occasions.

Otherwise, for general purpose business casual fair, I really like the brown Clifton--a very versatile shoe, and the brown Delray, which I think nails it when paired with dressy khakis and a nice shirt.

I agree with the above. He hit a home run.

 

Why have fifth ave in brown if you will need captoes in black? Do you want two of the same shoe in different colors? I know you said you don't wear suits, but will there be any time you will need a formal shoe? Wedding? Funeral? Job interview? Church? Black tie event?

 

McCallister is a great shoe but black dulls the beauty in my opinion. It is a wingtip and less formal than captoe, so it is a perfect shoe to have in merlot or walnut.

 

I love Strands. It is a shoe that can be worn with a suit or jeans. It is a little less formal than a black captoe, but not much. The only place I would not wear it is at formal events that demand a black captoe.

post #6 of 18

I just saw the PA in black is on sale at Nordstroms for $229.

post #7 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by LgFriess View Post

I just saw the PA in black is on sale at Nordstroms for $229.
They also have the lasalle and strand for sale at $200 at nordstrom anniversary sale.

I also purchased for work and while the strand is a beautiful shoe I went with a brown lasalle to wear to work and not get such notice. The strand is nice but the brogueing stands out and flashy shoe. I also picked up the black park avenue for $229
post #8 of 18

Gee, if only there were a thread somewhere to discuss AE shoes, with occasional references to the Nordstrom Sale. smile.gif

 

Anyway, if the academic exercise is to come up with three AE shoes to cover as many bases as possible for someone who rarely wears suits and almost never at work, I would not recommend a black stitch cap in a three shoe closet.  I'm quite aware of the "weddings, funerals, and job interviews" mantra that is chanted here ad nauseam  but I'm confident that a brown punch cap like the FA paired with an appropriate suit gets the job done 99% of the time for most people for those events.  In a ten shoe rotation, sure, have a black stitch cap back there gathering dust, just for those occasions when you think you simply have to have black.  But for someone rarely wearing suits and with a smaller number of dress shoes, I wouldn't tie the money up in them.

 

If the OP's plan is to definitely keep the FA's, then the other two could be from this list:

 

  • walnut Clifton or Stand
  • burgundy McAllister
  • pebble grain Macneil
  • Neumok, color of choice

 

With that, a LOT of bases would seem to be covered, given what the OP has mentioned.  plus, many of those are now, or frequently are, featured at sale prices by Nordstrom.

post #9 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Count de Monet View Post

Gee, if only there were a thread somewhere to discuss AE shoes, with occasional references to the Nordstrom Sale. smile.gif

 

Anyway, if the academic exercise is to come up with three AE shoes to cover as many bases as possible for someone who rarely wears suits and almost never at work, I would not recommend a black stitch cap in a three shoe closet.  I'm quite aware of the "weddings, funerals, and job interviews" mantra that is chanted here ad nauseam  but I'm confident that a brown punch cap like the FA paired with an appropriate suit gets the job done 99% of the time for most people for those events.  In a ten shoe rotation, sure, have a black stitch cap back there gathering dust, just for those occasions when you think you simply have to have black.  But for someone rarely wearing suits and with a smaller number of dress shoes, I wouldn't tie the money up in them.

 

If the OP's plan is to definitely keep the FA's, then the other two could be from this list:

 

  • walnut Clifton or Stand
  • burgundy McAllister
  • pebble grain Macneil
  • Neumok, color of choice

 

With that, a LOT of bases would seem to be covered, given what the OP has mentioned.  plus, many of those are now, or frequently are, featured at sale prices by Nordstrom.


Thankyou!  So now I ordered the PA in Black, so I'll have the FA in Brown, PA in Black, and I'll prob keep the Strand in Walnut....i'm sure i'll change my mind in the next 5 minutes again...

post #10 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Count de Monet View Post

Gee, if only there were a thread somewhere to discuss AE shoes, with occasional references to the Nordstrom Sale. smile.gif

 

Anyway, if the academic exercise is to come up with three AE shoes to cover as many bases as possible for someone who rarely wears suits and almost never at work, I would not recommend a black stitch cap in a three shoe closet.  I'm quite aware of the "weddings, funerals, and job interviews" mantra that is chanted here ad nauseam  but I'm confident that a brown punch cap like the FA paired with an appropriate suit gets the job done 99% of the time for most people for those events.  In a ten shoe rotation, sure, have a black stitch cap back there gathering dust, just for those occasions when you think you simply have to have black.  But for someone rarely wearing suits and with a smaller number of dress shoes, I wouldn't tie the money up in them.

 

If the OP's plan is to definitely keep the FA's, then the other two could be from this list:

 

  • walnut Clifton or Stand
  • burgundy McAllister
  • pebble grain Macneil
  • Neumok, color of choice

 

With that, a LOT of bases would seem to be covered, given what the OP has mentioned.  plus, many of those are now, or frequently are, featured at sale prices by Nordstrom.

Burgundy McAllister is grain corrected, merlot is not.

post #11 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by rpearlberg View Post


Thankyou!  So now I ordered the PA in Black, so I'll have the FA in Brown, PA in Black, and I'll prob keep the Strand in Walnut....i'm sure i'll change my mind in the next 5 minutes again...

That's a good mix. The PAs might sit in the back of your closet for months...but that's ok. When the time comes you'll be glad you have them.

That said, there's nothing wrong with dressing them down a little. I wouldn't pair them with jeans, but anytime you're wearing grey or navy slacks, they'd work.
post #12 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Upward View Post

Burgundy McAllister is grain corrected, merlot is not.

 

Yes, at one time the old "burgundy" McAllister was corrected grain.  They now call them "merlot" and are calfskin.  I don't think a "burgundy" McAllister has been available for a while now.

 

But I think he knew what I meant. smile.gif

 

Interestingly (or not), on the AE website, when you sort by color, "merlot" isn't an option but "burgundy" is.  Choosing that, you find over two dozen shoes, some called burgundy and some merlot.  It isn't clear whether AE is making a distinction between hues or between leather quality.  For example, their non-Independence "top line" shoes like the PA and the McAlister are called merlot, as are the Manchester and Grayson.  On the other hand, some of their lower priced loafers are called burgundy, though the non-shell Randolph is also called burgundy and it is priced the same as the other "top line" models and definitely (I think) is not corrected grain.  And the "Independence" grade Adams is also called burgundy.

 

And of course all of the "dark red, wine related" shell cordovan models are called burgundy.  At least, all I can think of.

 

So, I can't make any rhyme or reason of it..  If I had to hazard a guess, perhaps used to, everything "deep red" was called burgundy, whether it was corrected grain, "premium calfskin," or shell.  Then, if they changed a model from CG to premium calfskin, as with the McAllister, the PA (and I think I have seen an old Fifth Avenue in burgundy CG), they created the name merlot to signal they were making a change of leather for those models.  If a leather didn't change for a model, they stuck with burgundy, regardless of its leather.

 

Just a wild guess.

post #13 of 18
As I said in the other thread, I still think you have too many balmorals. Since you dress in business casual most of the time, most of your shoes should be more casual, i.e. bluchers or loafers. Sure, you can get away with balmorals without a suit, but it isn't ideal. Since you can return the shoes, you have the opportunity to get closer to ideal.
post #14 of 18
post #15 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Punjabjat View Post

My vote is for the Strand in Walnut...for my money it is the most versatile of the group...

+1.
I have always been a fan of the Strand in walnut.
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