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RM Williams Boots - Everything You Wanted to Know

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Sator, Sep 18, 2006.

  1. grimslade

    grimslade Well-Known Member

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    Just an FYI--I still have not received my boots from aussiebushhats.com, shipped Oct. 2. Grr.

    EDIT: I also ordered the 11.5 Ms that someone here (apparently) returned to STP. I have found my 10.5s ever so slightly short. We'll see if the 11.5s are better.
     
  2. Sator

    Sator Well-Known Member

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    Thank to the following post I now understand the concept of blocking during the construction of the shaft of a boot: http://www.askandyaboutclothes.com/f...036#post435036 Blocking is required when creating a proper fitting whole cut upper/shaft of a boot but is found mostly on bespoke boots. It is exceedingly rare amongst RTW boots but can be found routinely on RM Williams boots. Indeed this seems to be one of the secrets to the oft mentioned comfort factor of their boots. Proof of the use of an old-fashioned and time consuming blocking process can be found when you first get your pair of RM Williams boots and you see what looks like a ridge or fold running down the front of the boot from the bottom of the shaft towards the instep. It soon disappears with recurrent wearing. This ridge is the by-product of blocking the shaft. Take a look at the following pair of new Craftsman boots: [​IMG] See that ridge running down the front - that is evidence that the shaft has been properly blocked.
     
  3. grimslade

    grimslade Well-Known Member

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    I don't yet have pictures for what follows, but if I can take them before I ship the the 10.5 Hs back, I'll post.

    For now, you'll have to take my word for it. I ordered a pair of RMW black chelseas from STP a month ago. I chose 10.5 Hs because I'd tried them on in the store (I thought) and had found them a good fit (I thought). But when the boots arrived, I found that, as I believe I posted above, they pinched my outer toes when I walked in them. So when a pair of 11.5 Gs (all listed sizes are the sizes stamped on the soles of the boots) showed back up on STP, I called in an exchange (I'd worn the 10.5s a couple of times, but to be honest, they weren't really comfortable). The 11.5Gs arrived today, and they fit much better.

    But that's not why I'm posting. I was struck that the 11.5G seems no narrower than the 10.5H. The 11.5 is just barely perceptibly longer overall. Would you expect that going up a size and down a width would cancel out in width? I wouldn't. But there you have it.

    FWIW, I wear an 11.5 EEE in AE PAs.
     
  4. gamelan

    gamelan Well-Known Member

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    ...you see what looks like a ridge or fold running down the front of the boot front the bottom of the shaft over the instep. It soon disappears with recurrent wearing. This ridge is the by-product of blocking the shaft.


    very interesting. that was the first thing i noticed when i got my boots from STP. my first thought was that someone had done a poor job of packing the boots!

    once again, great info Sator!

    -Jeff
     
  5. Sator

    Sator Well-Known Member

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    very interesting. that was the first thing i noticed when i got my boots from STP. my first thought was that someone had done a poor job of packing the boots!

    once again, great info Sator!

    -Jeff


    I used to think that too until I read an explanation otherwise. You never see a ridge like that on a Chelsea from John Lobb or Edward Green so I too thought it was part of it being a less expensive boot. Far from it, it is a sign of very old fashioned quality that has largely died out in most RTW ranges.
     
  6. Torque

    Torque Member

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    Nice to see that much appreciation of RM Williams boots. I ordered a pair of Yearling Craftsmen about a year ago over http://bootsonline.com and they have become my favourite pair of boots, even more than my C&J Chelsea (because the leather is less delicate, making them more versatile).
     
  7. Smokey

    Smokey Member

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    I've purchased two pairs of yearling craftsman from bootsonline.com

    Great, speedy service.

    I now own three pairs of RMW's 2 yearling craftsman in Chestnut(brand new) and Black(1 year old) and one pair of Black yard boots.

    The two pairs I've owned have held up impressively with the yard boot surviving 2.5 years of living and walking around NYC and only now needing new heels.
     
  8. Sator

    Sator Well-Known Member

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  9. broady

    broady Well-Known Member

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    Hey guys -- I have a minimal shoe wardrobe - outside of athletic shoes I only have: -black slipons -vans -square toed leather sneakers (which dont see the light of day) -black dress shoes So I thought that some brown boots would be the next thing to get. Am I right in thinking this? I live in Australia, so I'm also thinking RM williams is the way to go. A quick search on ebay brought this up: http://cgi.ebay.com.au/RM-WILLIAMS-B...QQcmdZViewItem Would these be appropriate to wear with a suit? Do you think the heel is a bit outlandish? If so, could it be re-heeled differently?
     
  10. Sator

    Sator Well-Known Member

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    Hey guys --

    I have a minimal shoe wardrobe - outside of athletic shoes I only have:

    -black slipons
    -vans
    -square toed leather sneakers (which dont see the light of day)
    -black dress shoes

    So I thought that some brown boots would be the next thing to get.

    Am I right in thinking this?

    I live in Australia, so I'm also thinking RM williams is the way to go.

    A quick search on ebay brought this up:
    http://cgi.ebay.com.au/RM-WILLIAMS-B...QQcmdZViewItem

    Would these be appropriate to wear with a suit?

    Do you think the heel is a bit outlandish? If so, could it be re-heeled differently?


    In Australia you can always wear RM Williams boots with a suit. However, I would strongly advise against wearing a pair with Cuban heels like this. Flat heels are what I would go for. If you take them to an RM Williams accredited shoe repairer or an RM Williams store they might be able to tell you if they can change the heel to a flat heel for you. Otherwise, I do know they use different lasts for their higher heeled boots.

    As for wearing brown boots with a suit, I personally happen to feel that dress boots should be black, but others do disagree with me on that one. Boots are one point when I think the "no brown in town" rule still applies - maybe not for dress shoes - but for boots I am a stickler to the rules. However, chestnut looks handsome with a sportjacket or blazer, when a more casual look is called for.
     
  11. Sator

    Sator Well-Known Member

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    Actually on second inspection they have block heels, in which case they don't look anywhere near so exaggerated in real life. I am not a great fan as they are tapered and feel a slight bit unstable to me.
     
  12. grimslade

    grimslade Well-Known Member

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    OK, here, hopefully, are some pictures of the 10.5H and 11.5G Craftsmen, as compared to each other and to 11.5 EEE Park Avenues and 12 EEE AE Harrisons. I was struck that 11.5 RMWs, which should be the equivalent of 12.5 AEs, are still measurably shorter than the 11.5 AEs, and that they are no narrower than even the widest AEs, although I had trouble conveying this fact in pictures. I hope someone finds these useful in trying to figure out sizing.
    Here is the 10.5H (on left) alongside the 11.5G (not on left):
    [​IMG]

    Here they are again, same orientation. I had depth-of-field issues, but I think you can still tell that the shorter wides are pretty much the same width as the longer mediums:

    [​IMG]

    From the front this time. From here, if anything, the wides look somewhat narrower than the mediums (which are a size larger):

    [​IMG]

    Once more, better showing the difference in length:

    [​IMG]

    Here's the 11.5G next to a Park Avenue 11.5 EEE. As noted, the PAs are maybe ever so slightly longer, despite theoretically being a size smaller:

    [​IMG]

    Same two shoes again, showing (hopefully) that they are pretty much the same size:

    [​IMG]

    If I could take a picture with the soles right against each other, the size similarity would be even clearer. Anyway, I thought this might interest those still struggling with RMW sizing issues.
     
  13. grimslade

    grimslade Well-Known Member

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    Here are all four shoes, from L to R:
    Harrison 12.5EEE, RMW 11.5G, PA 11.5EEE, RMW 10.5H

    [​IMG]
     
  14. skalogre

    skalogre Well-Known Member

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    Great pics! Thank you. I am still very seriously considering a pair of chestnut jodphurs (the kangaroo buckle boots). But at over US$300... too much for me right now.
    Interesting question: realistictally, would the kangaroo leather be worth the extra expense or will the real benefits come out after maybe a few decades of wear (as compared to just "normal" cow arse [​IMG] )?
     
  15. grimslade

    grimslade Well-Known Member

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    Great pics! Thank you. I am still very seriously considering a pair of chestnut jodphurs (the kangaroo buckle boots). But at over US$300... too much for me right now.
    Interesting question: realistictally, would the kangaroo leather be worth the extra expense or will the real benefits come out after maybe a few decades of wear (as compared to just "normal" cow arse [​IMG] )?


    Thanks!

    I want them too, but I am also divided on the Kangaroo. I'll probably end up driving the Aussie in the RMW store crazy by continuing to wander in there to fondle his one pair of Kangaroo boots (which are Craftsmen, not the jodhpurs).

    Right now, I'm thinking that my next pair will be the Comfort Craftsmen in Chestnut Yearling. Would be nice to have some rubber-soled for foul weather. Alas, my dark tan Craftsmen from ABH are still MIA. [​IMG]
     
  16. Beckwith

    Beckwith Well-Known Member

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    What is the price difference between the NYC Store and online vendors?
     
  17. grimslade

    grimslade Well-Known Member

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    What is the price difference between the NYC Store and online vendors?
    NY store is about twice as much (or nearly so, depending on the model, etc.) as the Australia-based online vendors mentioned above in this thread.
     
  18. edmorel

    edmorel Well-Known Member

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    What is the price difference between the NYC Store and online vendors?

    Well the difference between Nungar and Ben Silver is about $250. Of course, had I ordered the boots from Ben Silver in mid October, they'd be here by now [​IMG]
     
  19. grimslade

    grimslade Well-Known Member

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    Well the difference between Nungar and Ben Silver is about $250. Of course, had I ordered the boots from Ben Silver in mid October, they'd be here by now [​IMG]


    Yeah, I'm starting to get anxious about my Australian order too. In the meantime, I've gotten two pairs from STP...
     
  20. Sator

    Sator Well-Known Member

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    Custom orders take ages - up to about 8 weeks.

    Shipping to the US can add another 2 weeks onto the order too.
     

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