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Loake v Alfred Sargent boot quality?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
G'day everyone,
Here in Australia, good shoe shopping is an expensive affair. (Stacy Adams cost over $200)
Since I said, "good shoe shopping", you can imagine how much they must cost

I saw a pair of Loake shoes at David Jones (our biggest 'luxury' department store), the Kempton, in tan, for $479 Aud.

I like them, but am frankly a cheap bastard, despite having a $100 gift certificate.

On eBay, I saw a pair of new Alfred Sargent "George" boots, which are priced at about $148 US.
Even with postage, the Sargents are way cheaper, making them my prime choice.

This is where your knowledge comes in.
From a quality perspective, how do the 2 pairs stack up?

Here is some info I obtained on the Loakes:
The Loake Kempton is a Chukka Boot in Brown Grain Burnished Calf Leather: Goodyear Welted Leather Soles and Heels Fully Leather Lined, Leather Insoles Last: 026, Fitting: F (Medium Wide)

I could not find the same info on the Sargents, I'm sorry to say, but I am including pics for your viewing dis/pleasure. Loake to the left, Sargent to the right.

I've searched for comparisons online and on the forum, with little obvious success, so I defer to your opinions, and thank all contributors.
post #2 of 9
YMMV...my experience has been Loakes for Charles Thyrwitt and AS for Brooks and Lands end. From that experience, I would say Alfred Sargent all the way, but I don't know anything about the two shoes in particular, in terms of which line they come from as each manufacturer has many levels of quality.
post #3 of 9
I believe that the Kemptons are from Loake's 1880 line, and are thus of reasonable quality.
However, Alfred Sargent probably does have a better reputation than does Loake.
Whether that is truly deserved or not, I don't know, as I only have one pair of each.
Coincidentally, each is a two-eyelet blucher and I quite like both. The Loake is arguably the more comfortable of the two, but then such comparisons are fraught with difficulty due to the subjectivity of fit etc.

You can buy Loake from various online purveyors far more cheaply than you can from DJs. A few examples are P.Lal (based in Malaysia) and Herring Shoes, Pediwear and SolelyShoes (all based in the UK). SolelyShoes has a more limited selection but offers free shipping. Pediwear has a "Loake Shoe Club" which offers discounts on Loakes after your first order and sometimes also give you a set of shoe trees with each pair of Loakes.
A bit of searching should reveal other sites selling Loakes online.
Most, if not all, of the above sites also sell other UK brands such as Sargent, Grensons, C&J and multiple others.

Unless you are fortunate to have a totally unexceptional foot, I would think that the best bet would be to use DJs or any other stockists of UK footwear in Sydney (is Harrold's still a going concern? What about Henry Bucks?) to find your size and width, and then promptly proceed to order online. You'll easily save 40 to 50% off the Australian retail price by purchasing from overseas.

I hope that this helps - good luck with your purchases.

P.S. If you're buying from Pediwear or another UK vendor, the postage costs can sometimes come as a bit of a shock. However, the shipping is typically more than offset by the removal of the VAT, which is around 17.5% of the shoe price.
post #4 of 9
I much prefer AS -- both quality and styling.
post #5 of 9
I have the AS George boots in brown and black. The toe is a little narrower, but they shape is nice and they're pretty comfortable.
post #6 of 9
post #7 of 9
I have the Loake, bought from Herrings shoes out of the UK. Decent shoe for the money. I put them on mabey once or twice a month. Can't talk about the AS but the Loake I do like.
post #8 of 9
I would not consider another pair of Loakes except maybe in suede. The AS I've seen, even the ones for LE, have been much better.
post #9 of 9
I really like the LE. Did AS make the chukka in calf leather or was it just suede?
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