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***The official Alden thread *** - Page 1101

post #16501 of 87457
Quote:
Originally Posted by nurktwin View Post

Agreed. Is Alden a union shop? Those stitching mishaps give the impression some of the Alden artisans are counting off the minutes to lunch.

So are you saying the work would be better if it was done by some 9 year old in a third world country that was getting paid by the piece?

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post #16502 of 87457
Quote:
Originally Posted by HorseHide View Post

So are you saying the work would be better if it was done by some 9 year old in a third world country that was getting paid by the piece?

Is that all there is besides union shops? I guess all AEs are made that way...
post #16503 of 87457
Discolorations in the hide and the lace hole alignment don't really bother me. However, when you do pay a premium you expect to get a premium product, and I do not think it is wrong for someone to expect that. Even though the color thing doesn't bother me, I can totally understand how it can bother someone else and whoever said they should stay away from cordovan is probably right (although you can also argue that Alden could put in a little bit more effort trying to match the hides even though it would slow down production).

However, you have to agree that the stitching (and sometimes overall construction) on Alden shoes tends to be subpar and just plain sloppy. I had longwings where the vamp stitching came apart after 10 minutes of gentle wear on the carpet, a boot where the stitching had a snag that was 1/4 of an inch long, and another pair of boots that had an inexplicable hole in the sole (i kept them simply because I really liked them). Sure, you can send them back to the factory and I'm sure Alden is more than happy to fix them for you, but why are they even leaving the factory looking like that?
post #16504 of 87457
Quote:
Originally Posted by WhoKnewI View Post

Discolorations in the hide and the lace hole alignment don't really bother me. However, when you do pay a premium you expect to get a premium product, and I do not think it is wrong for someone to expect that. Even though the color thing doesn't bother me, I can totally understand how it can bother someone else and whoever said they should stay away from cordovan is probably right (although you can also argue that Alden could put in a little bit more effort trying to match the hides even though it would slow down production).
However, you have to agree that the stitching (and sometimes overall construction) on Alden shoes tends to be subpar and just plain sloppy. I had longwings where the vamp stitching came apart after 10 minutes of gentle wear on the carpet, a boot where the stitching had a snag that was 1/4 of an inch long, and another pair of boots that had an inexplicable hole in the sole (i kept them simply because I really liked them). Sure, you can send them back to the factory and I'm sure Alden is more than happy to fix them for you, but why are they even leaving the factory looking like that?
But that is the point. You are not paying a premium. You can go Edward Green and pay a premium and not have these "problems".
post #16505 of 87457
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ahab View Post

But that is the point. You are not paying a premium. You can go Edward Green and pay a premium and not have these "problems".


True. $700 shell Aldens are inexpensive compared to $1600 shell Edward Greens.

post #16506 of 87457
Quote:
Originally Posted by enigma77 View Post

True. $700 shell Aldens are inexpensive compared to $1600 shell Edward Greens.

Well if that is the shoe these people want I think it is a small price to pay. These people have pride, they have standards. They are not the type who will settle.
post #16507 of 87457
For most people 700 dollar shells are a premium. You're telling me that 700 doesn't warrant clean stitching?
post #16508 of 87457
Quote:
Originally Posted by HorseHide View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by nurktwin View Post

Agreed. Is Alden a union shop? Those stitching mishaps give the impression some of the Alden artisans are counting off the minutes to lunch.

So are you saying the work would be better if it was done by some 9 year old in a third world country that was getting paid by the piece?


First of all, thanks to all those who share their knowledge of shoes on this list. For the most part, it is very helpful to those of us interested inalden shoes and other brands. While I would tend to agree that alden shoes should be held to the highest standards, the unfortunate and, I suspect, unknowledgeable comment about union shops is just unfair and untrue. As a union lawyer, I can tell you that unionized workers care deeply about skill,quality of work and safety. If you ever visited the sweat shops in the united states let alone abroad, you would not be so quick to take pot shots.
post #16509 of 87457
Quote:
Originally Posted by WhoKnewI View Post

For most people 700 dollar shells are a premium. You're telling me that 700 doesn't warrant clean stitching?
If you think it is a premium then find me other manufacturers of Whiskey shell shoes so that we can make an intelligent informed opinion. Thank you.
post #16510 of 87457
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bucho View Post

First of all, thanks to all those who share their knowledge of shoes on this list. For the most part, it is very helpful to those of us interested inalden shoes and other brands. While I would tend to agree that alden shoes should be held to the highest standards, the unfortunate and, I suspect, unknowledgeable comment about union shops is just unfair and untrue. As a union lawyer, I can tell you that unionized workers care deeply about skill,quality of work and safety. If you ever visited the sweat shops in the united states let alone abroad, you would not be so quick to take pot shots.
What sweat shops in the US?
post #16511 of 87457
Quote:
Originally Posted by WhoKnewI View Post

For most people 700 dollar shells are a premium. You're telling me that 700 doesn't warrant clean stitching?

The premium you are paying is for the rarity of the leather. Especially in rarer shell, Alden is by far the most "affordable" brand that offers it regularly. Who else does at the $700 price point?

I'm not excusing the poor work, but when you're dealing with a small company (as Alden are) with an overwhelming demand at an affordable price, you will see this more often. And some of the grips are ridiculous (see the above picture that was taken with what seems like a microscopic lens, and even then the deformity had to be circled). Alden fixes these without issue, so what's the big deal? Its obvious they're not hurting for business, so you suggest they hire more quality control people and then having the price of all their shoes go up to around $1000? No thanks. The process is fine the way it is. I'd love for someone from Alden to stand up for their work and quality here, even though I know that they won't. Sure people pay $1600 for shoes, but thats way out of my range, and I'd much rather be able to have these shoes and send a few back for repairs, than not be able to have it at all.
post #16512 of 87457
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ahab View Post

Well if that is the shoe these people want I think it is a small price to pay. These people have pride, they have standards. They are not the type who will settle.

Yeah, and I bet they stand up when they piss.
post #16513 of 87457
I think some of the people in this thread have never looked that closely at a pair of C&J shell. They have similar issues to Alden shell in terms of blotchiness or color variations. But C&J only seem to offer a color similar to Cigar so it's not as obvious as on Whiskey or Ravello. Plus my C&J shells seem to suffer from water spotting more than any Aldens I own.

When it comes down to it, there are three companies that offer cordovan shoes in regular stock which are widely avaiable and are under $1000; Allen-Edmonds, Alden, and C&J. And if you want dress boots under $1000, Alden is the only game in town.

The Alden issues with stiching is of course inexcusable.
I have no comment on the made in India Florsehims.
post #16514 of 87457
NYR - I think you're dead wrong on this issue. I own 7 pairs of Alden shoes some of which have been purchased over 10 years ago. I own both cigar and ravello shell shoes and neither have had any discoloring issues or construction issues. Some of these are on their 3rd resoling and are by far my favorite shoes in the collection. Being from New England I also like to give business to a local company that still makes quality items here in the USA. None of these current quality issues had ever been present until every single hipster with a macbook pro and a fixed gear bike decided Alden was the "cool" shoe to own. It seems like Alden can't keep up with demand and is sacrificing quality for $$$, and I'm not the only long time Alden wearer saying this. I think these issues should be brought to the attention of the forum, who accounts for quite a large percentage of Alden customers. That's if any long time Alden guys still browse these forums, or maybe it's just a bunch of brand worshiping hipsters that think Alden could never do anything wrong?

FWIW - I would have no problem at all if said line was towards the heel on one of my shoes but I really think it's inexcusable to let that pair out of the factory with a line through the entire toe box, and you wouldn't have to hire any addition personnel to notice something like that.
post #16515 of 87457
Quote:
Originally Posted by zippyh View Post

I think some of the people in this thread have never looked that closely at a pair of C&J shell. They have similar issues to Alden shell in terms of blotchiness or color variations. But C&J only seem to offer a color similar to Cigar so it's not as obvious as on Whiskey or Ravello. Plus my C&J shells seem to suffer from water spotting more than any Aldens I own.
When it comes down to it, there are three companies that offer cordovan shoes in regular stock which are widely avaiable and are under $1000; Allen-Edmonds, Alden, and C&J. And if you want dress boots under $1000, Alden is the only game in town.
The Alden issues with stiching is of course inexcusable.
I have no comment on the made in India Florsehims.

Allen Edmonds certainly makes cordovan shoes and they are under $500. even:

http://www.allenedmonds.com/aeonline/cati2_Shoes_1_40000000001_-1_______130213_subcategory?

I believe they source their cordovan from the same place as Alden too, Horween.
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