I was a big beneficiary of the Prada selloff of Church inventory in 2000-- I roamed the New York and Miami area Marshalls, and bought up over 50 pair of Church's and Cheaney shoes. Among them were two pairs of chocolate brown "Custom Grade" shoes that I think are shell cordovan. The shoes are hand-numbered in the lining, with the gold Custom Grade emboss, but don't say Cordovan or Horween. They have the typical cordovan "plump with oil" look, and creases reverse to a lighter shade of leather rather than darkening. They absorb minimal polish. They are NOT a reddish tint, however-- a true warm chocolate is the shade. Styles are a Cleverly-toed oxford with minimal perfing, and an interesting mid-vamp tasselled slip-on with, of all things, a full wingtip. Any foolproof test for cordovan leather that will verify my good fortune? One of the two pairs was triple marked down to $30, by the way.
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1/5/05 at 8:13am