Out of no where. They just arrived DC shop yesterday. ;-)
So I've been reading that Alden's secret is they apply some acrylic to the shell cordovan. This would explain why their shell always seems a bit shinier out of the box than other makers, which is great. It may be part of the dye they add on to Horween's shell cordovan.
Does this also explain why just brushing is usually good enough to shine them? Seems like applying conditioners/waxes etc would either cover up the shiny acrylic or start to remove it.
Probably not a good chance we will re-introduce AF9. Maybe Yenni would consider it at Brick + Mortar.
I agree that it is/was an all-time great (circa 1998, Aberdeen last, with hand sewing on the heel). How that shoe came about: I was working at the Robert Talbott tie store in Carmel (our shop was around the corner), and a guy came in wearing some really nice Norwegian front slip-ons, probably by some European maker. I had never seen a Norwegian front slip-on, and that is where the idea came from. I asked Alden if they could make a similar shoe for Alden of Carmel, and the result was AF9. I don't know whether they had previously made a similar shoe for another retailer or not. I know other stores have sold it since, but the Aberdeen last version is the best in my opinion. We also sold it in black shell cordovan (AF13) and in brown alpine grain calfskin (AF14?). We then re-introduced it in snuff suede at J.Gilbert Footwear five or six years ago.
Are you sure she got in a big order? Kathy usually submits smaller orders for exotics for a quicker turn around.