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Quality of designer brand shoes?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Okay so I know designer shoes are not the best quality or even good value but how good are they generally? For example, I found out that Marc Jacobs shoes are made by an Italian company called Iris S.R.L., which also supplies to other designer brands like Chloe and Alessandro dell'Acqua. It is also ranked 36th by annual sales among Italian companies in the industry. So, from such a company what could one expect in terms of quality? Is there any justification (besides the fact they are seriously overpriced) in belief their products are better than those from typical mall brands like Kenneth Cole and Aldo?
post #2 of 9
Some designers for shoes, as with clothes, have better quality than others....some are garbage, some are great, etc. While Bally makes some fantastic (and comfortable) shoes, Dolce makes complete crap for footwear. Specific designers might help your question.... Kenneth Cole started sucking for men's footwear after 2001.
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Well what about Marc Jacobs and John Varvatos?
post #4 of 9
Well being Marc Jacobs for Louise Vuiton, you would have to think that the leather materials would be better [wouldn't you]. Kenneth Cole etc have grain corrected and [mostly] cermented soles. The upper is of very average quality, as is the sole leather. Marc Jacobs would have to use better quality materials. l have many Prada, Gucci shoes etc, nearly all are very average materials. Grain corrected, poor sole leather etc. They are too mass produced. l would say; be very wary of designer shoes: some are great but most are not.
post #5 of 9
I have a pair of Bally Terni monk straps. While the craftmanship leaves a lot to be desired, the uppers leather feels very soft and the inside is lined with soft leather as well. I didn't detect any corrected grain leather. Actually, it feels almost like nappa leather. They are by far the most comfortable shoes I own. They are however rubber soled shoes but the soles are thin enough to be dressy and I haven't met one pair of pants that doesn't break favorably on these shoes. Suck though. After being caught in the rain a few times with these shoes, the sole is coming off is a few places. Is it there a way to cement them back on?? Has anyone had the problem with soles coming off due to water damage? -HitMan009
post #6 of 9
I have a couple pairs of Florsheims Imperial line that I am very pleased with, they have garnered quite a few compliments. Eric
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
I guess this would be an ultimate newbie question but how do you detect corrected grain leather? I've heard high polish are often used to hide corrected grains but is there anything else I should be wary of?
post #8 of 9
You mean like Armani, Versace, Brioni, etc.? I avoid them -- first of all, they're usually pretty ordinary in construction and often too outlandish in styling. Plus, often way overpriced for what you're getting (IMO). And, in many cases, who knows who actually makes the shoes. Finally, there are such unbelievable boatloads of them on EBay -- especially Versace and Armani -- that I have come to think (i) they are quite ordinary, and (ii) some could be fakes. There are exceptions -- at least as of 2000 or 2001, Lattanzi made shoes for Jil Sander and Brioni.
post #9 of 9
I have a couple pairs of Florsheims Imperial line that I am very pleased with, they have garnered quite a few compliments.   Eric
I'm with you Eric - My Imperials are good enough for me. I have a monk strap pair, half made with Deer leather that look beautiful. My take on shoes is that because I walk alot (more than 5kms a day) and therefore need to get my heels replaced every two months (wear my shoes once a week), the very best quality is immaterial. Years ago I when I first started working I had cheap Florsheims, no brand Chinese shoes, Gucci shoes, Church's (with welting on the underside) and Lloyd shoes. All similar style - semi or full brogues, oxfords or monk straps.  The uppers in all cases outlasted the sole and heels and they all lasted the same length of time. So for me to buy Green or Lobb is pointless (and I am not a true shoe afficionado). These days the shoes I wear are strictly predicated on aethetics 1st, quality 2nd. Therefore, i love my Bally Scribes, Gianni Versace (made by cesare Paciotti, not referring to the V2 line), Florsheim Imperials, Gucci's etc. And if I could afford bespoke Lobb et al I still wouldn't buy them because as a guy in his mid-30s I do not think they suit me - I prefer something more directional and fashionable. As to quality, this is a moot issue for me as past experience has dictated that regardless of price and quality, my heels will go in two months, and sole in one year. After one year I I get a sole attachment (that rubber stuff made by Topy) and after 2 years get sick of repairing the shoes again so get rid of them and get new ones. Others no doubt will have differing and for them equally valid views. To me the utility value of $1000+ shoes is the same as $200 shoes and I'm happy with that. Other clothing items on the other hand, like suits and ties, I feel differently about coz my suits have lasted over 10 years so far so I'm prepared to spend more for better quality labels.
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