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Dress Shoes for a Frequent Traveler

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by swetooth9, Apr 2, 2013.

  1. swetooth9

    swetooth9 Member

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    I am currently working as a consultant and just completed my first project. Dress code was business casual, so I alternated between loafers. However, my next project will require suits Monday thru Thursday, so I'll need dressier shoes.

    Should I go "all out" and get myself two pairs of nice oxfords? I've been eyeing the black Allen Edmonds Park Avenue for my black suit and the walnut or bourbon Allen Edmonds Strand for my navy suit. They are $350 each. Or should I go with cheaper alternatives such as the following:

    1. John W Nordstrom Lido in black ($175)
    http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/john-w-...d=0&fashionColor=&resultback=639#BVRRWidgetID

    2. John W Nordstrom Adrian oxford in brown ($175)
    http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/john-w-...tualcategoryid=0&fashionColor=&resultback=639

    The reason I ask is because of the heavy traveling required in my job (100% travel) and the road/weather conditions that my shoes are exposed to - I wouldn't feel as bad if I roughed up some shoes that weren't as expensive. On my last project, my shoes had to endure the rain, snow, and rocky road surfaces when walking to and from the office (which could be a pretty good walk from the parking spots we got). Also, they salt the roads heavily when snow is expected (which is often), which aren't good for the shoes. I would definitely wipe them down and keep them clean if I invested $350+ per shoe, but I don't know if it's better to just wait til I switch jobs to a non-travel one (where conditions are more predictable on a daily basis) before investing in the higher quality shoes. In addition, the rush to take shoes on and off at the airport twice a week would increase wear and tear on the shoes as well I would think.

    Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2013
  2. JayJay

    JayJay Well-Known Member

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    Wearing cheap shoes will make travel worse. I travel often and wear my better shoes. They're comfortable, look good, and can handle the occasional abuse.
     
  3. RogerP

    RogerP Well-Known Member

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    Consider a Loake plain toe single monk. Inexpensive, understated and easy on / off at the airport.
     
  4. swetooth9

    swetooth9 Member

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    thank you both for your responses. I am still considering getting the AE shoes if they can withstand the occasional abuse. Thanks for the Loake suggestions - they look nice! However, I'm leaning more towards oxfords
     
  5. Ilovelobbs

    Ilovelobbs Well-Known Member

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    Feb 25, 2013
    I used to travel and walk alot in my previous life....
    My best tip is to go for the following:

    1) Design/Style: Derby open lace-up, just as dressier & easier to slide on/off in planes/trains/autmobiles.
    2) Sole type: Rubber Dainite - It's discreet, doesn't look like you're climbing a mountain. Handles all types of surface to air chemicals; snow, rain, acid rain; salt and more bloody salt.
    3) Leather: rich black calf leather
    4) Budget: Spend at least $400-$500 on makers like C&J's. Vass is top-end $550/$600

    Follow the above rules and your shoes will easily last 10+ years, mine have. In that period I have gone through several German cars; 2 wifes and 3 houses....I still have the same pair of C&J's...The good thing about the 2 pairs you picked from Nordstrom - they will get to visit the re-cycle bin within 6 months wear.

    Give Crocketts factory shop a call every saturday morning and they will have many subs for sale costing no more than $250. Tel +44 1604 631 515 ask for Shirley/Barbara if she still around.

    Oxford close lace
    http://www.crockettandjones.com/Product/Hallam-Black-Wax

    Derby open lace
    http://www.crockettandjones.com/Product/Norwich-Black

     
    1 person likes this.
  6. chogall

    chogall Well-Known Member

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    Don't worry about sole options; you could always resole to danite/rubber sole after the original worn out.
     
  7. Ilovelobbs

    Ilovelobbs Well-Known Member

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    Depends on the shoe he buys - if they are gluey stick-on jobs then it's a gonna once the're worn.
     
  8. swetooth9

    swetooth9 Member

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    Thanks so much for the detailed post! Very helpful information that I'll definitely consider for my purchase. I appreciate the phone number as well for the factory shop!
     
  9. swetooth9

    swetooth9 Member

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    thanks so much for the input! I'm definitely considering rubber soles for these, since I expect to do a lot of walking in the elements and parking lot surfaces

    Thanks!
     
  10. Kwaker

    Kwaker Well-Known Member

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    You don't have to compromise with synthetic-soled dress shoes ... go with the AEs and bring along some Totes galoshes. They're light, packable and inexpensive (<$20 vs >$50 for Swims).
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2013
  11. chogall

    chogall Well-Known Member

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    What I meant is that he could always resole his AE PA or Strand or any GY Welted shoes to Danite shoes once the original sole/heel is gone.
     
  12. RogerC

    RogerC Well-Known Member

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    Meermin is your friend.
     
  13. mafoofan

    mafoofan Well-Known Member

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    I bought a pair of Gucci loafers from Bluefly that were awesome for travel. The red and green ribbon is a little pretentious maybe, but people know it just means quality. Definitely cool if you're in Europe or someplace sophisticated like that.
     
  14. nishan22

    nishan22 Active Member

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    I found myself traveling a lot last year. Picked up a pair of the Allen Edmond graysons - super easy at the airport and can be dressed up or down as appropriate.
     
  15. mafoofan

    mafoofan Well-Known Member

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    I just looked those up because I was curious. The tassels are kind of out-of-fashion, but I guess if you can balance them with other eccentric details (metal tie clip with an animal head on it, a tweedish cabbie hat, an old-fashioned looking vest, etc.), you might be onto an interesting look. Definitely wear them with some nice broken-in jeans--you know the ones with the selvedge that shows when you fold up the hems? Yeah, now I'm digging it. You just need to totally run with the "sartorial" theme. Like, I'd definitely not wear a suit jacket, but maybe it would be cool just to carry one over your shoulders. You have to look accessorized and layered but not in an artificial way.
     
  16. Pembers

    Pembers Well-Known Member

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    From a detached SF onlooker:

    You'd be better off picking on a thread started by somebody who deserves it. The OP seems quite nice. This type of query has always popped up and has nothing to do with the decay-of-a-flawed-but-magnificent-civilisation narrative, which has something in it but is horrifyingly mawkish.

    I have an idea of it as a sort of menswear Radetzky March in which the establishment of the FNB forum is the Battle of Solferino (which probably makes Manton Emperor Franz Joseph), voxsartoria is Count Chojnicki, and so on.
     
    2 people like this.
  17. Lear

    Lear Well-Known Member

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    ^^^

    I'm ashamed to display my ignorance in such a public manner; haven't got a clue as to what any of that means :embar:. Makes me wish I'd listened more at school.

    Lear
     
  18. globetrotter

    globetrotter Well-Known Member

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    ok, not to be mean, but are you traveling or do you have a long commute? if you are flying to the same place every Monday and returning every Monday, that is basically a long commute, and it isn't that different from what every office worker needs. the idea of two pairs of oxfords, maybe if you want to splurge on cordovan, is a good one. I like to have all my shoes in one color, its less flexible, but it is easier to polish them all in one color.

    investing in good shoes is always a great idea, you want them to last and stay in good shape.

    I go through airports a lot, and I use laced shoes, I don't like the feel of slip-ons, but some people like loafers, or Chelsea boots, to travel in. I think that monks aren't substantially better than laced shoes for taking on and off in airports.
     
  19. JayJay

    JayJay Well-Known Member

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    I also wear either laced shoes or double monks. I've never understood choosing footwear based on the couple of minutes to take them off and put them back on in airports.
     
    1 person likes this.
  20. RSS

    RSS Well-Known Member

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    I tend to prefer loafers while I'm in travel mode. If I'm flying commercially they are easy to slip on and off ... and they are comfortable. If I'm flying privately, they still fulfill the requirement for comfort. If it's a long haul flight, I often pack slippers in my carry-on. Feet tend to swell when flying and if I have trouble getting back into my shoes (that has happened) I can just deplane in the slippers.

    The shoes I'll need when I get to my destination are packed in the luggage that goes below (or in back).
     

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