Because of the added length .. Jim of Alden SF suggests on the slip on's Aberdeen last tassels go down 1/2 from Van and Barrie. I have a low volume foot so this might work for me. The Aberdeen tie model he suggests TTS. Wondering what Uncles take is on this staple shoe sizing?
No uncle here. (Actually, I do not understand the reference for this "uncle" "nephew" business - I guess I came in on the story in the middle, but that is another, and not so important, topic). I am responding -- forgive me if it is inappropriate and, of course, feel free to disregard -- because I am a longtime owner of Alden shoes on a number of different lasts and recently had a similar experience with Alden slip-ons that you may find helpful.
I am a big fan of NST's and own a number of such Alden models. I have bought some NST loafers from Alden in NYC that are on the Grant last. I wear 7.5E in true-to-size Alden lasts of which Grant (and, for me, Aberdeen) is one. So I asked for these shoes in that size.
I am not so proud to say they know me at Alden NYC. Because these shoes were slip-ons with a high vamp (a design characteristic that the Alden full strap and tassel loafers on the Aberdeen last share), I was encouraged to size down 1/2 size and get 7E to avoid heel slip. The sales associates are incredibly helpful and knowledgeable and I took the advice.
This did not work for me. The ball of my foot hit the 7E too far forward in the shoe -- too much towards the toebox. My forefoot was also too far forward in the shoe, thus the widest part of my foot was beyond the widest part of the shoe and was a bit squeezed. Neither of these was a terribly big deal, and the shoes were imminently wearable. These were noticeable, however, and I would have preferred not to experience them, so I exchanged for my typical size to see what would happen. Much better for me: the shoes are looser on my feet in the 7.5E. But the shoes are well on my feet, my heel lifts ever so slightly, but not out of the shoe, they are comfortable, I think they look great, and I am very pleased.
I take the moral of this story to be that fit can be individual and, in many instances, is driven by preference rather than ineluctable rules. For example, I suspect the initial recommendation I received about the NST loafers was based upon a lot of experience where many wearers prefer snugness and certainty that the shoe is not moving on their feet and would not like the looseness that I prefer.
As to Aberdeen last shoes, they fit me no appreciably differently than Alden shoes made on other other true-to-size lasts and I wear the same size in all of them. Apparently, some people size differently on Aberdeen than other lasts.
Our feet are all different, and we experience the sensations of our feet differently -- some are more sensitive than others; some just have clubs down there and rags would not feel much different to them than baby's-butt-soft-French calf.
Nothing beats try on. It should not take long to figure out your sizing. If you are not near a store, I have found that almost all Alden retailers are very easy to work with on finding the right size. Best of luck and have fun.