or Connect
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Streetwear and Denim › ***The official Alden thread *** Share enthusiasm, reviews, sizing, advice, and photos.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

***The official Alden thread *** Share enthusiasm, reviews, sizing, advice, and photos. - Page 5431  

post #81451 of 122416
I so wish I could've snagged a pair. Was too far down the list.
post #81452 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by ReppTiePrepster View Post
 

^^^  (Edit: This is a reply to a few posts before the last) Whatever the case may be, shell make-ups from Alden look better than most.  If it is in fact acrylic that makes the difference, does that really matter?  Unless Alden possesses exclusive rights to this application that none of us knows about, other companies have the option to do it as well but apparently do not.  I don't know that it is fair to diminish what Alden does to complete their product.  It seems to me that most of us here keep coming back for more.

 

BTW, please do not read too much tone into this post.  Just thought I'd throw my $0.02 in...

Gotcha.  My intention was in no way to diminish what Alden does but to weigh in against diminishing what other makers do.  Putting acrylic on shell might make the shell more attractive, but does that really make the shell qualitatively better?  One could argue that taking a rare, durable, valuable commodity and sheathing it in artificial product makes it qualitatively worse - and it could possibly be a way of helping to mask imperfections in the shell (more than is masked by the color).

 

I'm mainly just playing devil's advocate (being a PITA) here.  I like Alden, I like other makers.  Again, my point is that the seeming superiority of Alden's shell is apparently nothing more than acrylic.  It is what it is.  (Hate that expression but oh well.)  Now then, if anyone has decided they want to sell off their daytripper boots because they no longer like their Alden shell as much as they used to, I will save you and take them off of your hands at firesale prices.

post #81453 of 122416
If Alden uses acrylic, others should copy them. Their shell looks better for longer.
post #81454 of 122416

^^^ I totally understand where you and @MoneyWellSpent are coming from.  I'm not even sure however, that acrylic is all that Alden does differently to their shell.  I actually think they've been doing something different more recently.  I have seven pairs of color 8 shoes/boots.  Most of them have a similar level of shine but one in particular has an extremely glossy finish that looks plastic-like.  It is the last color 8 shoe I purchased about a year ago from AoC (shortwing blucher, commando sole on barrie).  I like it and it still looks great, but much prefer the previous color 8 shoes I have.  Maybe this one shoe got an overdose of "Alden's magic juice," I don't know.  In a recent visit to Alden SF, I noticed most of their color 8 shoes on display had that same over-the-top high gloss/wet look.  I took a look at their 2145 on display and it looked significantly different than my pair that is likely about 5 years old.  I suspect there is something recent that has changed.

 

Whatever the case may be, I still love my color 8 shoes.  Alden may however, be using a new (relatively speaking) protocol to finishing their shell.

post #81455 of 122416

All I have in Alden is the indy so far. Looking to get loafers. Which one of their loafers is the most popular one?

post #81456 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by budapest12 View Post
 

 

Yet we will continue to hear over and over again that Alden "does a better job finishing its shell" than other makers of "dry" shell shoes and boots.  I am not saying the acrylic finish doesn't look nice --- only that it is time to accept the fact that the difference is the acrylic finish, not some other mystical step that makes Alden shell "better" than the shell of Alden's competitors.

 

Caveat:  I am equal shell opportunist, owning Carmina, Alden, C&J, and vintage shell Florsheims (and looking to add Vibergs soon).  I love my Aldens, I just happen to think that the others brands also offer a quality product and that the seeming dryness of their shell really just reflects the absence of acrylic finish.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ReppTiePrepster View Post
 

^^^  (Edit: This is a reply to a few posts before the last) Whatever the case may be, shell make-ups from Alden look better than most.  If it is in fact acrylic that makes the difference, does that really matter?  Unless Alden possesses exclusive rights to this application that none of us knows about, other companies have the option to do it as well but apparently do not.  I don't know that it is fair to diminish what Alden does to complete their product.  It seems to me that most of us here keep coming back for more.

 

BTW, please do not read too much tone into this post.  Just thought I'd throw my $0.02 in...

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by budapest12 View Post
 

Gotcha.  My intention was in no way to diminish what Alden does but to weigh in against diminishing what other makers do.  Putting acrylic on shell might make the shell more attractive, but does that really make the shell qualitatively better?  One could argue that taking a rare, durable, valuable commodity and sheathing it in artificial product makes it qualitatively worse - and it could possibly be a way of helping to mask imperfections in the shell (more than is masked by the color).

 

I'm mainly just playing devil's advocate (being a PITA) here.  I like Alden, I like other makers.  Again, my point is that the seeming superiority of Alden's shell is apparently nothing more than acrylic.  It is what it is.  (Hate that expression but oh well.)  Now then, if anyone has decided they want to sell off their daytripper boots because they no longer like their Alden shell as much as they used to, I will save you and take them off of your hands at firesale prices.

 

I agree with Budapest.  I wasn't meaning to say that there is anything inherently wrong with their finishing.  I was just pointing out that it isn't a magical (albeit a secret) process that is leading to the finished product.  They aren't getting the cream of the crop from Horween that's kept in a locked vault that nobody else can possibly gain access to.  If you like it, buy it.  I like it too.  Others prefer the "natural" appearance of shell.

 

It can certainly be argued that Alden's finish is covering the natural beauty of the shell, since it isn't naturally that way when it is finished by the factory, and that bothers some people.  I'm really not trying to argue the pros and cons except to say that Budapest's point about sheathing the leather in an artificial product could have ramifications that wouldn't apply to shell left in it's natural state coming from the tannery.  We've all seen great looking pairs of Alden's that are several decades old, so there may not be any negatives, assuming their treatment hasn't changed.  That may be all the evidence we need.  However, from a theoretical perspective, covering a material that needs to breathe and accept periodic nourishment with a product that could actually hinder that may not be a good thing. 

 

I think many like Alden's finish, but not everyone.  There is apparently a market for both. 

post #81457 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by ReppTiePrepster View Post
 

^^^ I totally understand where you and @MoneyWellSpent are coming from.  I'm not even sure however, that acrylic is all that Alden does differently to their shell.  I actually think they've been doing something different more recently.  I have seven pairs of color 8 shoes/boots.  Most of them have a similar level of shine but one in particular has an extremely glossy finish that looks plastic-like.  It is the last color 8 shoe I purchased about a year ago from AoC (shortwing blucher, commando sole on barrie).  I like it and it still looks great, but much prefer the previous color 8 shoes I have.  Maybe this one shoe got an overdose of "Alden's magic juice," I don't know.  In a recent visit to Alden SF, I noticed most of their color 8 shoes on display had that same over-the-top high gloss/wet look.  I took a look at their 2145 on display and it looked significantly different than my pair that is likely about 5 years old.  I suspect there is something recent that has changed.

 

Whatever the case may be, I still love my color 8 shoes.  Alden may however, be using a new (relatively speaking) protocol to finishing their shell.

 

They do apply dye as well.  I don't know if they are applying a dye/acrylic combo all in one step.  In other words, simply applying your own acrylic finish to some other maker's shell shoes won't necessarily result in an Alden finish.  I think there is certainly a company secret here. 

post #81458 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoneyWellSpent View Post

Sounds suspicious, but it's true.  Alden's shell isn't special.  It's from Horween, just like most other top shoe companies.  Alden simply applies the acrylic finish to give it the "special" look, which makes it easier to keep shiny.  That said, I won't speculate on the dangers of a lay person trying to apply their own acrylic finish to their shoes.  You may well end up with a botched, or uneven looking "paint job."

I was more suspicious about the prospect of putting acrylic on a pair of shell boots after the fact.
Internet dudes getting all vexed over expensive shell only to put a layer of plastic on topic is a pretty hilarious prospect.
post #81459 of 122416

Re-glazing or glazing shell cordovan shoes can be done relatively easily.  This is not complicated, as others have demonstrated in earlier posts within the thread.  Also, Alden's glaze can be removed easily, if a natural look is preferred.  But if you plan to deglaze new shoes, perhaps you should consider buying something that comes this way.

 

What Alden produces is not all that unique, although their goods are nice. Keep in mind, it's Alden's glaze that prevents a true patina from developing early in their shell because the glaze prevents polish, dirt, and water from penetrating the leather.  Cheers. 

post #81460 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by meso View Post


I was more suspicious about the prospect of putting acrylic on a pair of shell boots after the fact.
Internet dudes getting all vexed over expensive shell only to put a layer of plastic on topic is a pretty hilarious prospect.

 

I certainly wouldn't try it myself.  I certainly advocate for buying the desired product from the company that makes it, whichever your preference is. 

post #81461 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by smoothie1 View Post
 

What Alden produces is not all that unique, although their goods are nice. Keep in mind, it's Alden's glaze that prevents a true patina from developing early in their shell because the glaze prevents polish, dirt, and water from penetrating the leather.  Cheers. 

 

This is true, and it plays on what we were saying earlier about the theoretical downside to using the acrylic.  Generally, it if keeps stuff from getting in, it also keeps stuff from getting out (i.e., it limits breathability).  Just something to consider when choosing your product.  Again, I'm not saying anyone shouldn't strictly purchase Alden shell if that's what they like. 

post #81462 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoneyWellSpent View Post


However, from a theoretical perspective, covering a material that needs to breathe and accept periodic nourishment with a product that could actually hinder that may not be a good thing. 

It's funny you bring this up...

Up front I admit I'm a tech geek, and a tinkerer by nature - soooo... remember when one guy here completely stripped his boots and then used Reno to bring back a more muted shine? He demonstrated that the Alden top coat does not handle scratches nearly as well as naked shell...

He also did testing on the acrylic top coating to prove what Alden's method more-or-less was. At that time I started doing research on exactly what you are taking about, I spoke with people from Horween, read several papers, and did some tests on one of my Ashland wallets.

Basically, I believe the top coating applied by Alden is nearly fully permeable - Saphir Reno passes through it and is absorbed, as is water (this is why we see bumps on our shoes after rain). I spent some time on this because I was trying to figure out what people here were referring to as "wet" and "dry" shell. Basically, after my tests, I determined the verbiage has nothing to do with the amount of oil / fat in the skin, and is simply a reflection of the acrylic top coat.

Very well conditioned Cordovan can appear much more "dry" than Alden top coated shell...

Just my 0.000002 BCN

Cheers,
BN
post #81463 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by meso View Post

I was more suspicious about the prospect of putting acrylic on a pair of shell boots after the fact.
Internet dudes getting all vexed over expensive shell only to put a layer of plastic on topic is a pretty hilarious prospect.

I was done here by a member a few months ago - the guy completely stripped a pair of boots and then brought them back, it's worth searching for if you have the time.
post #81464 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buckeye Nation View Post

It's funny you bring this up...

Up front I admit I'm a tech geek, and a tinkerer by nature - soooo... remember when one guy here completely stripped his boots and then used Reno to bring back a more muted shine? He demonstrated that the Alden top coat does not handle scratches nearly as well as naked shell...

He also did testing on the acrylic top coating to prove what Alden's method more-or-less was. At that time I started doing research on exactly what you are taking about, I spoke with people from Horween, read several papers, and did some tests on one of my Ashland wallets.

Basically, I believe the top coating applied by Alden is nearly fully permeable - Saphir Reno passes through it and is absorbed, as is water (this is why we see bumps on our shoes after rain). I spent some time on this because I was trying to figure out what people here were referring to as "wet" and "dry" shell. Basically, after my tests, I determined the verbiage has nothing to do with the amount of oil / fat in the skin, and is simply a reflection of the acrylic top coat.

Very well conditioned Cordovan can appear much more "dry" than Alden top coated shell...

Just my 0.000002 BCN

Cheers,
BN


^^

great read BN, thanks for your research. This is good to know.
post #81465 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by smoothie1 View Post

Re-glazing or glazing shell cordovan shoes can be done relatively easily.  This is not complicated, as others have demonstrated in earlier posts within the thread.  Also, Alden's glaze can be removed easily, if a natural look is preferred.  But if you plan to deglaze new shoes, perhaps you should consider buying something that comes this way.

What Alden produces is not all that unique, although their goods are nice. Keep in mind, it's Alden's glaze that prevents a true patina from developing early in their shell because the glaze prevents polish, dirt, and water from penetrating the leather.  Cheers. 

Both water and oil ( and potentially the colored "oil" in a cordovan cream....) will pass through the Alden top finish
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Streetwear and Denim
This thread is locked  
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Streetwear and Denim › ***The official Alden thread *** Share enthusiasm, reviews, sizing, advice, and photos.