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***The official Alden thread *** Share enthusiasm, reviews, sizing, advice, and photos. - Page 2749  

post #41221 of 122416
Originally Posted by bruceposey View Post

[/IMG][/IMG] Brand new PTB's. Tell me someone that your jealous.

PTBs never lose their appeal for me. Very nice.
Originally Posted by Organika View Post

In most cases I see a van last is comparable to the barrie. I am a 9E in the barrie, can't fit any slip-ons right now due to my location. Would like to hear some opinions if you take same size in van last as barrie or go up half a size, thanks.

I wear a 10.5E in Barrie and went with 11D on the Van for a LHS. It is a snug fit for me, which works for a slip on. Also, note that there's been much discussion here about the instep of the Van. Seems it works for some feet and not for others. Good luck!
post #41222 of 122416
Originally Posted by sqroot3 View Post

beautiful. may i ask how much the damage was? also, why can't i find it on their website?

sorry. also, it's not on their website i don't think. they have it on alden of carmel and shoemart i think.
post #41223 of 122416
Originally Posted by borderline View Post

It's been awhile since I posted this. Plus, I added some things, and can't edit the original post after 6 months or something like that:


Compiled by borderline using the combined wisdom of "The Official Alden Thread" on Styleforum and other web sources.

Before Buying
What are the different lasts and how do they fit relative to one another?
*See below for more sizing information

What do the different cordovan colors look like?

I feel like I'm buying too many Aldens, what can I do?
1) Give up, there is no hope.
2) Stop reading this thread

Why do they call it the Indy boot?

Are Alden shoes worth the price?
At the end of the day, the main benefits to Alden shoes are
1) High quality Horween leathers (Chromexcel, cordovan, and I assume suede) in unique colors
2) Willingness to work with retailers (many of whom work with customers) to develop special styles
3) Variety of well-fitting lasts
4) Recraft-ability (not necessarily by Alden, but by a variety of cobblers)
5) Decent price point compared to shoemakers that work with similar materials
6) Traditional aesthetic (high quality and stylish in a "handsome," "gentlemanly" way)
7) Alden shoes are pretty comfortable, can be very eye catching (cordovan, suede, etc tend to get tons of compliments) and overall enhance one's look.
The obvious downsides are
1) Poor quality control, particularly as they ramp production
2) Low / inconsistent availability

After Buying
How should I break in my shoes?
Use “Mac’s Break-in Procedure”:
Shoes should be worn only on carpeting on three different days for a minimum of one hour in order to ascertain that the fit is proper.

What is the "pen trick"?
You put a pen where your foot joints are and then crease the shoe. This way the crease is set exactly where your joint bends and the crease is nice and even. People report varying levels of success with this, and it is generally thought to be more important for the PTB.

Will my cordovan shoes stretch?
The consensus is that cordovan stretches very little, if at all.

Care and Cleaning
How should I clean my cordovan shoes or boots?
Use the “Mac Method”:
1) Clean shoes with damp cloth

2) Brush vigorously with a horsehair brush

3) Buff with smooth cloth

4) Use wax after a minimum of fifteen wearings

Some other cleaning advice from Alden of Carmel
1. Do not use 'neutral' polish
2. Do not clean cordovan shoes using saddle soap
3. Do not attempt to clean cordovan shoes using petroleum distillates or cleaning fluids
4. Do not use any spray shines or aerosol type waterproofs
5. Do not attempt to dry wet shell cordovan shoes with heat or a heater. Wipe them dry, and allow them to dry naturally
6. Do not attempt to polish shell cordovan shoes while wet

Some cordovan cleaning advice from the Shoe Care thread

Some cleaning advice from user MarioImpemba

My shoes are dry and/or discolored in the creases. How can I fix this?
Alden SF recommends using a small amount of cream in the creases. This can moisturize the area and also bring up some of the natural color in the leather. Most people use either Saphir Renovateur or Venetian Shoe Cream.

My cordovan shoes got wet and there are tiny round marks or bubbles. What should I do?
1) Next time try the Alden Leather Defender
2) Brush them for awhile
3) Try some Renovateur
4) Try the deer bone treatment
5) Just wait, it will go away evenutally

My cordovan shoes has some white stuff on the leather. What do I do?
This is called "bloom". One method is to use a hair dryer, hold it 6" away from the shoe, and then after it cools down use a chamois cloth and buff it for awhile. It should go away.

Will Alden put a different sole on my shoes?
Alden Restoration will now only recraft your shoes using original materials. If you want to put on a different sole, your best bet may be B. Nelson.

Can I have speed hooks converted to eyelets?
B Nelson will do it for $12 per eyelet (not per pair). A standard Alden boot with 4 pairs of speed hooks would therefore run $96. The top four eyelets would be off-centered with the bottom five, which is often done to compensate for the oblong size of the speed hooks.
Here's an example:

I want new shoelaces for my Indy Boots. What are my options?
1) Alden will mail you a pair if you ask.
2) The Alden Madison store will sell you waxed laces for ~$6.
3) Red Wing model 9011 will work, request them here

LWB: Longwing blucher
SWB: Shortwing blucher
PTB: Plain toe blucher
LHS: Leisure hand sewn (a loafer)

A video by Epaulet about the Alden factory

Cordovan: A Photo Gallery of Some of Mac's Shoes

Online Purchasing Options
Leather Soul
The Shoe Mart
Alden Shop
Sherman Brothers
J. Crew
Ben Silver
Moulded Shoe
Renners Fine Boots & Shoes
Sky Valet
Frans Boone Store
The Bureau
Alden of Carmel
J. Gilbert
Need Supply
Tres Bien
Anecdotal sizing information:
I find the Modified last (for my foot) is wider than the Barrie. 9D Modified fits me great, while 9D in Barrie is a snug fit, the E width for me in Barrie is too wide. I find the Trubalance last to be a little bit bigger overall last to the Barrie, whereas the Modified has a more tapered mid foot under the arch, opening up to a wider forefoot. (NewYorkRanger)

Normal size is 10.5D, I take a 10D in Barrie and 10.5E in Leydon (borderline)

I wear a 9 D in the Barrie and i've also tried a 9E in the Barrie. I won some of each and wear them both. The 9D is a little snug and the 9E is a little loose. I have a pair of 9.5 D leydon lasted LWB and they fit great. I went with a 9.5D on the grant.
9.5 E in the Dalton and most all AE's
9D in the truebalance (almost perfect fit)
9.5 D in grant ( perfect fit)
9.5 D in leydon (perfect fit)


I wear 6.5D Barrie and the 7D Grants fits well for me (actually 6.5E also works fine). (dsmivtr)

If you size down 1/2 for barrie (say 10E to 9.5E), don't try to size down 1 and go wider (to 9EE) (kippy).

the best way to determine fit and comfort is to ensure that the ball of your foot is at the widest part of the shoes. some people may have short toes and some people may have longer toes but using that area as a reference point has always worked well for me. Also there is just a feel when you put on a pair of shoes if it feels slightly too large or slightly too tight. If you think it fits you well and is not causing any pain or slipping off when you lace them, then they are likely the right size.(MiniW)

Alden should be giving you kickbacks for that! Awesome info sir. Wish this was around when i was first getting into these shoes.
post #41224 of 122416
Originally Posted by bruceposey View Post

The eye catching argyles are courtesy of Brooks Brothers.

I have a number of argyle pairs from BB. Mine are cotton, not wool, and provide a nice alternative for those of us whose skin can't tolerate wool socks.
post #41225 of 122416

I've heard of people getting Horween shells before, (for like $350ish).  Not sure how they got them, but maybe PM or email Nick Horween.  He gives his email on that blog I think.




I'm same size Van and Barrie.


9D Aberdeen, 9D Hampton, 9C Van, 9C Barrie.  (those two have that notoriously wide and low heels).  If you have wide heels (people with chubby feet often do) you might be able to do your regular width.  My heels are boney if anything.


Good Luck!

post #41226 of 122416
Originally Posted by Bakes11771 View Post

I've heard of people getting Horween shells before, (for like $350ish).  Not sure how they got them, but maybe PM or email Nick Horween.  He gives his email on that blog I think.


hmm $350 is a little too rich for my blood, especially as I'll likely bugger up some of the leather lol

post #41227 of 122416
Originally Posted by imolazhp_ci View Post

just picked this up from leather soul. been looking for one for quite a while.

Didn't know they offered these. Nice.

post #41228 of 122416
post #41229 of 122416
Originally Posted by PartagasIV View Post

Regarding horses, I have not had any per se but have eaten grilled zebra in Nairobi.

Would zebra shell be rarer than #4?

How about these? I gave StyleForum Graphic Design Guru "Parker" the photo of El Argentino's killer Cigar LWB and he came up with this, the Zebra Longwing! Maybe a LeatherSoul makeup for 2014?

post #41230 of 122416
Originally Posted by kwhitelaw View Post

does anyone own these LWB? curious how they look in real life photos.. thanks in advance

Are you interested in cxl or ravello pictures? I have the ravello lwb from aoc and can post some pics if you wish.
post #41231 of 122416
^^ I'd like to see those if you don't mind posting them.
post #41232 of 122416

Thanks everyone, I'll post when I find some alden goods.

I think I'll go for 10D or E Barrie and 10,5D or 10E Grant.

post #41233 of 122416

Alden x J Crew Indy boots
post #41234 of 122416
Happy Friday. Cigar Indys. With flash and without flash.

post #41235 of 122416
Originally Posted by El Argentino View Post

Good to read this. Disaster averted.



My Cigar/Ravello hybrid.

Can't stop looking at these LWBs. Just plain gorgeous.
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Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Streetwear and Denim › ***The official Alden thread *** Share enthusiasm, reviews, sizing, advice, and photos.