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Why do classics need to be ugly?

post #1 of 46
Thread Starter 

Ok, don't crucify me for posting this. I'm honestly trying to understand a bit of men's fashion as I've been pretty brain dead on the subject. I've been reading a lot on men's dress shoes because I'm in the market for some great shoes that will last me a long time. Everywhere I turn to online people recommend Allen Edmonds all the way. 

 

After hours and hours of reading I totally agree that I should be looking for a shoe with leather sole and Goodyear Welt. The style however, I just can't wrap my head around. My personal "style" I would say is a style that most people on this forum despise. It's the elongated square toes that some may refer to as "elf shoes". I'm not talking about huge pointy ones but basically what you'll see with Steven Madden or Stacy Adam shoes which I know are considered to be pretty much crap shoes now. 

 

I don't wear suits every day, just on the weekends. Every other day I am in business casual dress so some nice slacks and button up, long sleeve shirt. Would you still recommend AE Park Avenues for this? I feel like they're over dressed shoes and frankly not that pleasant looking. At least not compared to the more trendy looks out there. I know trendy looks come and go but I can't wrap my head around why so many people love Park Avenue shoes and hate the more trendy shoes that in my opinion look pretty nice. Is my fashion sense really that off?

post #2 of 46

Why would Park Avenues the be the only choice? 

post #3 of 46
Thread Starter 
They're not but they are probably the most popular. Those and Fifth Avenues seem to be almost a staple from what I've read. May be wrong but either way, the other AE models aren't much better. They are all pretty "old school".
post #4 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oliver84 View Post

They're not but they are probably the most popular. Those and Fifth Avenues seem to be almost a staple from what I've read. May be wrong but either way, the other AE models aren't much better. They are all pretty "old school".

 

Okay, so try a different brand. Have you heard of Alden, Edward Green, Church's, John Lobb and the likes? 

 

You may be experiencing a culture-style shock. Just like most members on this forum may question your taste in shoes as you've stated in the original post, you question the completely new-to-you style of traditional American footwear. 

post #5 of 46

Your fashion sense is not off. Most people just have their own unique stye.In fact, many brands tat are known to have a traditional, classical appeal are changing to a more modern and contemporary look such as Prada.

post #6 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by papa kot View Post
 

 

Okay, so try a different brand. Have you heard of Alden, Edward Green, Church's, John Lobb and the likes? 

 

You may be experiencing a culture-style shock. Just like most members on this forum may question your taste in shoes as you've stated in the original post, you question the completely new-to-you style of traditional American footwear. 

I'm not sure why you are fixated on Allen Edmonds.  They make a fine product, and I like them mainly because they are sort of unwieldy and have an ugly duckling appeal to them, but if you want a sleeker shoe, you can find something with an elongated toe from any of the brands above, or Vass.  Or, of you want to get into more expensive brands, St. Crispins or Gaziano&Girling.  There are also lots of good Italian makers out there that make a more lightweight shoe.

 

I think that people recommend Allen Edmonds because they are relatively inexpensive, but really, there are lots and lots of other choices out there.

post #7 of 46
OP, just because you are thinking about buying better quality shoes doesn't mean those shoes have to be boring. AE is a good entry level shoe, yes, but there are plenty of better shoes with more aggressive and modern styles than AE. You should look at Meermin, Carmina, and Kent Wang. You're better off buying one of those than 2 of AE when you hate the style. Go grab a monk strap, chukka, chelsea or a chisel toe oxford. Look at Italian makers too for shapes like the last one.










post #8 of 46
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all your input. I guess I need to do more research. I've never heard of the brands you guys mentioned. I've just been looking at AE,JM,Florsheim, Cole Haan, etc. I wanted to stay under $200 for a Good year welt if possible. I'm glad to hear my taste isn't completely out of wack.

I have noticed many Italian companies making good quality, modern looking shoes. I'm very into the modern look. Not too crazy looking, but something a bit more interesting than the classics...
post #9 of 46
It's also important to note that the shoes that you described in your OP (square toe) are, from a fashion sense, also out of style. These trends have a pretty short shelf-life and I'm reasonably confident that they're out as far as "modern/trendy" is concerned. As others mentioned, there are plenty of options out there that are high quality and sleek/elegant.
post #10 of 46
Classics need not be ugly. For Example:

http://cobblersweb.style.coocan.jp/marini1/marini01.htm

http://cobblersweb.style.coocan.jp/bespoke/bespoke-shoemaker6/g.marini.htm

Note that non of these shoes are antiqued, which to me is plague that will hopefully abate.

All you need is the price of a well used Honda.

Full disclosure: I cannot afford the shoes. My dress shoes are from Ludwig Reiter which cost about
as much as higher end Crockett and Jones.

I have these in black and suede. bought them a few years ago when the Euro was lower.

http://www.soletopia.com/2012/12/made-in-vienna-ludwig-reiter-red-chestnut-derby/
Edited by comrade - 6/15/14 at 4:18am
post #11 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oliver84 View Post

Is my fashion sense really that off?

Yes.
post #12 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oliver84 View Post

I'm very into the modern look. Not too crazy looking, but something a bit more interesting than the classics...

You're in the wrong place. This is the CLASSIC Menswear Forum.
post #13 of 46

I don't understand why you choose that thread title? It basically insults the taste of everyone on this forum and doesn't accurately express what your first post is about. What you actually want is quality shoes in the style that you like. AE is considered pretty much the obvious choose for an "affordable" quality shoe, although people on this forum often make misleading claims about their availability at low prices.  They do however make shoes like the ones you describe.

post #14 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by RY4N View Post

I don't understand why you choose that thread title? It basically insults the taste of everyone on this forum and doesn't accurately express what your first post is about. What you actually want is quality shoes in the style that you like. AE is considered pretty much the obvious choose for an "affordable" quality shoe, although people on this forum often make misleading claims about their availability at low prices.  They do however make shoes like the ones you describe.

+1

Classics are by definition what they are, if you alter them then classics they are not, simply some fashionable abomination. If you can't find the quality you require in the style you require, that rather confirms the point that quality and fashion are not bed fellows but classic and quality certainly are.
post #15 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oliver84 View Post

Thanks for all your input. I guess I need to do more research. I've never heard of the brands you guys mentioned. I've just been looking at AE,JM,Florsheim, Cole Haan, etc. I wanted to stay under $200 for a Good year welt if possible. I'm glad to hear my taste isn't completely out of wack.

I have noticed many Italian companies making good quality, modern looking shoes. I'm very into the modern look. Not too crazy looking, but something a bit more interesting than the classics...

No. It is!
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