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***The official Alden thread *** - Page 2323

post #34831 of 79255
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dbc0919 View Post

As someone once posted here in response to my expressing the same thought as you, with proper care the shoes will last 20 plus years.

I hope so, hence my post about getting shell care right.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dbc0919 View Post

Btw- your ravello PTBs are stunning and so versatile. Considering how rare they are and how much more expensive they are likely to be when they become available again, in the long run, I bet you'll be really happy.

Thank you. You make a good point about how the price of shell, in particular cigar, ravello, and whiskey, just keeps going up.

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post #34832 of 79255
Quote:
Originally Posted by Papa Doble View Post

You mean if you aren't going to go through the whole method, then you should at least brush them briefly before putting in trees and putting them in shoe bags?

All of my shoes - shell or calf - are stored on cedar shoe racks, in the master closet, in full view. My flannel shoe bags get used only for travel.
post #34833 of 79255
Quote:
Originally Posted by Papa Doble View Post

I have a couple questions on the Mac Method (perhaps I should just PM uncle). I know this has been covered before, but this thread is VERY long, and I really want to take good care of my shoes.
After wearing:
  1. Insert trees.
    Question: Alden's cordovan care guide suggests delaying putting trees in your shoes for a bit. Is there any consensus on this?
  2. Wipe with a barely damp cloth and let dry for 2 to 3 mins.
    Question: Do you use a basic spray bottle? Will an old, clean t-shirt do, or is a flannel cloth preferable?
  3. Brush vigorously with horse hair brush, keeping the brush in contact with the leather, for 5 to 6 minutes per shoe.
    Question: If you wear shell daily, this means you spend about 15 minutes each day (accounting for the other steps) caring for your shoes? I'm willing to do this, but I find it interesting because people often say shell requires less maintenance. I guess the point is that don't have to go through this trouble and shell will still look pretty good?
  4. Buff with flannel cloth.
  5. Use very small amounts of wax polish after a minimum of 15 wearings.
    Question: With all of the emphasis on using minimal wax, would it be ill advised to just never polish shell?

1. I don't put the trees in until the next day. 12 - 24 hours.  The reason for this is to give the insides time to dry out.  They develop moisture from your feet perspiring.  If that moisture persists, you create an environment for odor causing bacteria to thrive. (smelly shoes)

 

2. I take a paper towel and soak it under the faucet.  Then I ball it up and squeeze it in my fist as hard as I can.  This wrings out all the excess water and leaves me with a moist paper towel.  (squeeze hard)  Sometimes at work in the bathroom, I'll use the paper towel that I just used to dry my hands after washing them to get the dust off.  If water is left on your shoes after you wipe them, your towel is too wet.

 

3.  I brush about every 5 wearings (or so).  If you do a good job, they maintain the shine for a few wearings or weeks (in my experience)

 

4.  I often forgo the flannel cloth.  I can get them looking pretty good with just the brush.  The flannel just puts the finishing touch.  What the brushing does is brings out the natural oils and waxes within the leather to the surface, (through heat and friction) and spreads it around evenly.  The flannel cloth just makes it a little bit more even.  A shine is caused by an even surface, whether its shoes, a car or whatever.  The more smooth/even the surface, the better the shine.

 

5.  The idea is to use only polish as needed.  If you can get them looking good without it, than refrain.  when you do use it, just use a small amount spread thinly.  The idea is to bring out/maintain the natural patina of shell cordovan, not cover it up with thick layers of polish/wax.  

 

Unless you scuff them or something, you probably won't need to add wax for the first year.  Maybe after a few months you can add some venetian or reno.  I use venetian, have never tried reno.  Some say that the turpentine in reno can cause the pores in the shell to open up.  The product description for Saphir cordovan creme mentions this on The Hanger Project website.  There are many who use reno and have never noticed any ill effects, only positive results.  The choice is yours.

post #34834 of 79255
Quote:
Originally Posted by sevenfoldtieguy View Post


All of my shoes - shell or calf - are stored on cedar shoe racks, in the master closet, in full view. My flannel shoe bags get used only for travel.

I think you may have told me before, but is there a good place to order the cedar racks online?  Do you buy the Jos A. Bank version?

 

Thanks

post #34835 of 79255

Does anyone carry a snuff suede PTB in Barrie (or similar)?  I know Epaulet carries the Leydon, but I haven't had luck w/ that last.

 

Thanks!

post #34836 of 79255
Quote:
Originally Posted by kwhitelaw View Post

other than straight from an alden source, has anyone found a good match for #8 shell for a belt? 

Rancourt offers both a #8 CXL and a #8 shell belt.
post #34837 of 79255

Wax/Creme Review:

 

I've used the black paste wax from Brooks Brothers.  It does a fine job of adding some color back to a shoe that has faded a bit with age.  Applied thinly with a horse hair dauber.  Brushed with horse hair brush.  Buffed with flannel cloth.  It's lasted for months, have not had to reapply since.  It restored the jet black color that the shoes had when they were new.  They had lost some of their depth of color, and while still black, they just weren't jet black as they once were.  I think thats the point where you want to add your first wax/creme, as I think it improved/benefited the appearance of the shoe.  It still has that shell cordovan shine, and didn't cover it up. 

 

More recently, I bought the Saphir Cordovan Creme in Black, Brown and Burgundy from The Hanger Project, and just last night used the brown on my cigar.  The color was a perfect match.  I applied with a horse hair dauber, and one thing that I will do differently moving forward, is apply thinly to only one part of the shoe at a time, in a very circular motion.  What I won't do again, is spread it all over the shoe at once, and then try to go back around and work it in with a circular motion, as the initial spreading left some streaking from the linear movements used during application.  The streaks brushed out, but this stuff dries fast, so its best to apply it to one area at a time, as you won't have time after spreading it all over to go back around and work it in and even it out before it starts drying.

 

The Saphir Cordovan Creme also added a lot of moisture, as I have expereinced with venetian, which the Brooks Brothers Paste wax did not.  I did notice that the Saphir Cordovan Creme seems to have a 5 year shelf life, as it has an expiration date on the bottom of the jar.  It also has a nice almond extract smell, like a macaroon.  The Brooks Brother smelled more like a petroleum wax.

 

I think I do prefer the Saphir Cordovan Creme over the Brooks Brothers Paste wax.  I think it yields slightly better results, but the Brooks Brothers paste wax does a fine job as well.  I wish I would have thought to take before/after pics, but maybe next time.

post #34838 of 79255
Quote:
Originally Posted by advan031 View Post

Very nice! Does your Alden DC Color 8 cap toe have commando sole? I've been wanting another color 8 captoe in grant last.

Yes, all the boots have commando soles.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NAMOR View Post

Great polish Lagsun

I'm pretty lazy and usually just wipe with a damp cloth and brush for a minute.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sqroot3 View Post

Gorgeous.
Quote:
Originally Posted by wigglr View Post


i'm drooling

Thanks
post #34839 of 79255
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bakes11771 View Post

1. I don't put the trees in until the next day. 12 - 24 hours.  The reason for this is to give the insides time to dry out.  They develop moisture from your feet perspiring.  If that moisture persists, you create an environment for odor causing bacteria to thrive. (smelly shoes)

Nope, that's why you PUT trees in, at least if they are cedar and not some cheap plastic. They'll absorb the moisture and keep odors down.
post #34840 of 79255
Quote:
Originally Posted by thebeebs View Post

I think you may have told me before, but is there a good place to order the cedar racks online?  Do you buy the Jos A. Bank version?

Thanks

Yes. I have never paid more than half price, and I almost always get them during the buy1get2free promotion. I understand they are the exact same as the racks AE sells. I quite enjoy the fragrance of cedar and shell in my closet. nod[1].gif
post #34841 of 79255
Quote:
Originally Posted by thebeebs View Post

Does anyone carry a snuff suede PTB in Barrie (or similar)?  I know Epaulet carries the Leydon, but I haven't had luck w/ that last.

Thanks!

I bought my snuff suede ptb on the barrie from Unionmade. It appears they are not currently offering it though. I wore them alot this summer, mostly without socks. I wore them many times with shorts. I recommend them.
post #34842 of 79255
Quote:
Originally Posted by lagsun View Post

I haven't seen any group shots lately so I took one of my current line up. I included lasts and sizes to show how my sizing has evolved over the years. The larger sizes fit with the use of insoles. Apologies for the iPhone pic. My son took his DSLR to school today...
img0670nk.jpg

Excellent collection. Anyone else want to contribute their collection?
post #34843 of 79255
Latest addition: Alden for j crew pebble cap toe boots. Nice reddish-brown hue. Similar to the Alden for J. Gilbert make a few years back. Pull tabs, cap-toes and commando soles. Was around $408 with 25% code for signing up for the j crew card.



post #34844 of 79255
Quote:
Originally Posted by zippyh View Post

The paint has come off several of the eyelets on my #8 BB wingtips.
And the paint didn't chip off either. It's like the whole ring of it came loose. Looks like there's green oxidation on the brass too.
That's the only pair of Aldens I have with that problem.

I've had this happen on Kudu indys

Quote:
Originally Posted by meso View Post

Nope, that's why you PUT trees in, at least if they are cedar and not some cheap plastic. They'll absorb the moisture and keep odors down.

Depends though. I used to put in right away, now I let it air out for an hour if I didn't walk too much / was indoors most of the time and up to a day if it's been a hot day or I had a bit more sweat. I changed the timing after I did this with my Kudu indys when I was wearing them in snow and such. Developed a slight smell (mostly gone now) but the shoe trees couldn't absorb all the moisture and kept insides damp instead. Granted snow wetness vs. normal wetness is different but still
post #34845 of 79255

Cigar LWB delivered. Seems that Barrie will fit me better than Leydon.

Also, this is the first time I see cordovan IRL. Oh wow. 

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