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shoe advice sought

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Hi all, Shoes and socks are the most neglected elements of my wardrobe, which is a shame since shoes are a telling indicator of a well-dressed and stylish man. I only have two dress shoes and they are very miserable. How miserable, you ask. This miserable: * a pair of Payless black captoes (3 years+) * a pair of Bostonian brown business-casual shoes (3+ months) I wear business casual everyday to the office [shirt + wool slacks]. I rarely wear suits. I can spend only up to $300 and I was wondering if you would advise me on which one of the following paths I should take: a) replace the Bostonian with a dressier pair of brown shoes b) retire the Payless, get a pair of black Ferragamo loafers with silver-colored hardware and rubber soles (sorry, I will get killed in leather soles) c) retire the Payless, get a pair of Florsheim black captoes (rather attractive, I saw them at DSW for $79) AND a pair of loafers in english tan (orangish shade) and matching belt [any suggestions on where i could find such a pair of loafers and belt?] Thanks for your advice. I wish I had more money to spend
post #2 of 12
Why do you want loafers? At the position you're in I think quantity is more important than quality. There's no point buying one pair of nice shoes with the $300 because you will just destroy them by wearing them too much. I'd get two pairs of ok quality brown shoes, say a plain toe and a monkstrap.
post #3 of 12
Hmmmm, I bet you'll get a lot of responses, but I would go to ebay and buy the best shoes I can get in both black and brown, both brand new. For a budget of $300 (depending on your size), I you could probably get 2 pairs of Allen Edmonds (very common on ebay) or possibly Aldens (much harder to get, and more expensive on ebay). Allen edmonds has an auction account on ebay (seller name allenedmonds) in which they sell their past season overstocks, typically with a starting price of $79-129 (or lower) and a buy it now at $10 or $20 higher. Alternatively, Nordstrom will probably have a few styles in stock on sale after the holiday season, but its always a question as to whether they'll be 33% off or 50% off from nearly $300. Alternatively, you could go for just one pair of upscale english shoes that the folks on this forum will try to turn you onto. That is not a bad idea if you think you'll be able to get another pair in the future. However, if you do this, just remember to keep your current shoes in the rotation so that you don't end up overwearing the single pair you get.
post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 
I want english tan loafers because when I wear them 8am-5pm Monday to Friday, they help me deceive myself that I'm not really working but am sort of sipping cappucino in an outdoor cafe somewhere in Florence.   Addenum: Because fit is so important in shoes, I am afraid I don't have the guts to buy them from eBay. Addenum II: Is this a nice shade? Maybe something with slightly less of an orange tint would be better:
post #5 of 12
Color's decent. I prefer a slightly darker shade of brown, but that's just a personal preference. Are those timberlands?
post #6 of 12
Why would you get killed in leather soles? Leather soles are just as comfortable as rubber, and you can always add rubber stick ons to the soles if you are worried about NY winters. What about these: BlackBrown, if you are an 8.5Brown #2 I'd avoid bit loafers, personally. I just don't think they are very versatile for business wear.
post #7 of 12
Those timberlands are way too light for their intended purpose. I second NoVaguy's advice...go with two pairs of Allen Edmonds or Aldens. One black, one dark/medium brown. Excellent value on ebay, they are great shoes. Since that will only make 4 pair, don't retire any of your shoes unless you really have to, just rotate them (not necesarily equally). I also don't see what leather soles have to do with "killing" you. A good fitting pair of shoes will be very comfortable regardless of sole material. In fact, leather soles are preferable when walking on cobbles. Don't be so quick to rule them out. Regarding finding the correct size, stop by Nordstroms and try some on. Or just post your size in your existing shoes (and tennis shoes) and you'll get a good idea of your size in the shoes mentioned above.
post #8 of 12
Good advice above. Remember Bluefly has 20% off right now with the code (see Bluefly thread), and apparently their return policy is good. If you get quality shoes with leather soles I don't think you'll mind them at all. You might consider one pair with leather and one with rubber for bad weather. You could also buy one pair now, keep the others in rotation and save up for another pair to be added later. I would also stay away from bit loafers at this point in your shoe wardrobe building. Stick to reliable basics.
post #9 of 12
Honestly, if you fit those RL Crockett & Jones, I think it would be really hard to turn them down (not to mention you're going to save $50 with the %20 off coupon). You would have a very versatile, well-made shoe, and you could hit up eBay and find a decent pair (maybe even used) of Cole Haan, Allen Edmonds for under $100 if you're dedicated.
post #10 of 12
gregory, this might be herasy, but get yourself 2 pairs of rockport. when you have alittle more money, get yourself some better shoes. rockports look ok, are very comfortable and will last you much longer than you will keep them. for your budget you can get a pair of black captoes and a pair of brown plain toe oxfords, and they will be great until you can splurge on something handmade. For the first 7 years of my adult shoe wearing life I wore 2 pairs of rockport, and I think that they would still be wearable today if I didn't retire them.
post #11 of 12
Might I suggest Martin Dingman's Thurman shoe French calfskin cap-toe lace-up. Blucher; Blake construction. Rubber bottom? http://www.martindingman.com/
post #12 of 12
Have you tried the Grensons at Bennie's?
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