Originally Posted by totalair1
Fellow SF members-I've got a problem I need advice on. I've got a pair Alden Whiskey shell Short Wings with a dark area developing in the crease of each shoe, the left shoe is worse than the right. I've never used any polish on these shoes, I have Saphir Renovateur after the dark area started developing. I bought these shoes new, and from the beginning they first developed a light hazy area in the crease that appeared normal and I simply tried to polish out with horsehair brush. But as I brushed the creased area started to have a little gummy like material peel away. I kept brushing and the material continued to peel away kinda like glue or touch up finish. Its hard to explain. Anyway it started getting darker and I stopped.
My question is this something you think was in the finish from the factory? This area stated looking different as soon as the creases started developing, darker and kinda dirty and hazy. In retrospect i think these areas were touched up at the factory and I simply brushed away the touch up. It bothers me to look down and see the dark areas so I want to do something to fix it. Should I risk sending back to Alden? Any suggestions on how to get the dark area to lighten up? The more I brush the darker area seems to spread.
Alden apply a layer of overcoat glazing on most of their Cordovan shoes to give that instant out-of-the-box-shine. Vigorous brushing will wear out the overcoat glazing prematurely. Excessive use of solvent based products like Saphir Cordovan cream and Renovateur will dissolve the overcoat at various degrees.
Most likely, the sticky gummy thing that you got was the dissolved glazing.
Once the overcoat glazing is removed, the bare Cordovan is exposed. Renovateur darkens light color bare Cordovan slightly. I think that's what you are experiencing.
An appropriate analogy is in wood finishes. Some woodworkers put clear acrylic lacquer to get that easy brilliant shinny finish, while others use oil/wax for polishing.
Regretfully, I think you either leave the shoes as-is or send the shoes back to Alden. They will dye the shoes to a darker hue, and reapply the overcoat glazing.