I've been intrigued by that shoe and the mahogany shell cordovan wingtips that Adam used to have for some time now, but I've never gotten around to ordering either of them. What do you think of the shoes?
I've got a pair of Alden's "Leisure Handsewn Moccasins" in whiskey (tan) shell cordovan which I had bought six or seven years ago (reduced in a sale) in Germany. Now the color has darkened, the leather has acquired the soft folds of Walther Matthau's face and the shoes are absolutely gorgeous. The new longwings, (which so far I have worn only for an hour to the local supermarket) are, somewhat inevitable, rather new. To say it brutally, new shell cordovan shoes can look very similar to "corrected grain" calfskin (high gloss, somewhat plastic and rubbery looking leather, so beloved by the makers of cheap shoes). With wear corrected grain and cordovan will part company and one cannot mistake a pair of well-worn cordovans with a pair of well-worn corrected grains. I suppose, I did not buy the shoes for their look today but in a year's time. All shoes need wear to look really good. Some makers will give you that instant antique look (Green, Berluti and some Italians). But they can't give you instant creases across the instep. You have to acquire those yourself. At IKEA furniture shop they have a demonstration about the quality of their merchandise. There a machine opens and closes drawers and doors many times every minute, going on ad infinitum. That is an invention the shoe industry could do with, a machine bending new shoes and giving that well-worn look not only on the surface, but right all over the shoe.