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Skoaktiebolaget – Carmina, John Lobb, Enzo Bonafè, Carlos Santos, Saint Crispin’s, Rubinacci – Offi

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Leaves, Feb 27, 2013.

  1. Ironist

    Ironist Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I agree. I feel like suede Chukkas from different brands tend to look very close to each other. If you had a blind test with suede chukkas from multiple brands people probably couldn't tell the difference.

    Curious though what people's thoughts are on the EG suede though. Is it a lot better than Carmina and Enzo?
     
  2. RogerP

    RogerP Well-Known Member

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    I don't think the difference between Carmina and EG suede is as great as some others here suggest. I don't own any EG suede ( I do own a St. C pair, though), but I have seen plenty and have tried on these very Shanklins which are stocked by a local retailer. Is it nicer than Carmina suede? Absolutely? Massively / hugely / extremely nicer? Not IMO. Nearly three times nicer as reflected in the price (comparing, say 80092 to Shannons)? Nope.

    Not that this is at all surprising to me. I would not be the first to observe that as one ascends the price scale in premium RTW shoes, larger amounts of cash begin to return smaller, more incremental increases in quality.

    The Enzo comparison would be interesting. The only Enzo suede I have seen in person is on the shaft of my blue bal boots, but it did impress as being better (softer, more supple, more dense - if that makes sense) than Caarmina suede. But then my most recent Polo suede Carmina boots seems a slightly nicer material than that of my chocolate suede 80092s or my navy suede Rain last chukkas.

    There's probably no universally accepted means to objectively quantify it anyway - my perception is largely subjective as is anyone else's.

    When I saw the pic of the Carmina and EG chukkas together, it just reinforced for me what a tremendously compelling value Carmina shoes and boots are. Not that the EGs aren't worth the extra dough - like I said earlier - I own a number of pairs from them.

    And of course, I'm just referring to the quality of the suede here. As with construction method, it is one of a number of aspects that inform the quality and value assessment of a pair of shoes, rather than a singular and definitive factor.

    FWIW, I think there is a bigger quality gap in smooth calf when comparing EG and Carmina.
     
  3. Ironist

    Ironist Well-Known Member

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    Exactly. Although I really feel like the latest EG calf is losing its edge because colors are to dark to see the beautiful patina. GG is much better finish than any other calf, especially museum calf.

    I feel like suede is just so hard to tell. Difference is probably there but it's not so much an in your face difference and no one strokes their suede shoes so feel isn't really important.

    Especially in designs like chukkas. There's just really little difference in design, not like wing tips or split toes,and it's not the type of shoe like whole cuts where the sleek lasts really shine.

    I don't know, probably trying to convince myself that if I was going to cut corners on a shoe and go with a lesser brand it would be more forgivable on a suede chunky boot.
     
  4. bespoken pa

    bespoken pa Well-Known Member

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    Sucks about DOAK I have a westminster order I would like to place but I will wait out the dark chocolate doak supply.
     
  5. dddrees

    dddrees Well-Known Member

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    Roger makes a number of good points. But the difficulty is quantifying the actual difference. This is where it becomes more difficult, because for most of us this is more opinion than anything else. If you knew how much it cost on the open market for the suede Carmiina buys vs. the suede Edward Green buys this might help. However since one may enjoy better deals than the other it might even be better if we knew the difference a private person might pay and this would possibly be an even better scale. I have experience with Carmina and Edward Green, but I don't have any experience with Enzo. I do have some experience with some suede from Alden and Peal & Co and I can tell you in all cases the suede from Edward Green looks and feels better.

    However when buying suede shoes I don't pay more money just for the suede Edward Green uses, I am also willing to pay more to get an Edward Green shoe with an Edward Green Last, with an Edward Green design, with Edward Green attention to detail, an Edward Green sole, and all the other things that are included in the package.

    Does this mean someone else would see it this way? No
     
  6. rydenfan

    rydenfan Well-Known Member

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    I think the styling and last difference is very apparent between those two in the comparison pic. As someone who wears more chukkas than wing tips, I find it equal. Also, at $371 for the Carmina and $686 for the EG, the difference is not even 2x yet alone the 3x mentioned. I own more Carmina suede than EG suede but can assuredly say from my perspective the full cost difference is justified for me. Like any hobby there is always a law of diminishing returns past a certain price point but were we not caring or discerning about those we would not be on this forum or contemplating spending anywhere near even Carmina prices on footwear, let alone referring to them as a bargain
     
  7. dddrees

    dddrees Well-Known Member

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    Not unlike what a good number do with the Oxford Black Captoe.

    However in this case I also went with the Edward Green Chelsea.
     
  8. dddrees

    dddrees Well-Known Member

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    Agree, this is on of my biggest disappointments with Edward Green at this point in time.
     
  9. TtownMD

    TtownMD Well-Known Member

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    Very well said would have to agree with you & RogerP & if some one has input on Enzo suede & can put there input it would be awesome. So far Carmina, Enzo Bomafe & Vass very good bang for the buck suede or not just my humble opinion.
     
  10. RogerP

    RogerP Well-Known Member

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    I said nearly three times the price when comparing the 80092 to the Shannon, both fully lined tall bal boots. The unlined Shanklin is a bit of a ringer in the value game. The suede isnt any nicer on a fully lined EG chukka, but the price difference is much greater.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2015
  11. RogerP

    RogerP Well-Known Member

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    Agreed with all if that. Which is why I emphasized that my comparison was in respect of suede quality alone, and that this is but one of several factors which inform the assessment of both quality and value.
     
    1 person likes this.
  12. labravajazz

    labravajazz Well-Known Member

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    I just got a pair of Bonafe suede chukkas and can compare to EG suede and John Lobb too. I think it's pretty close to equivalent quality suede, very impressed with the Bonafe very plush suede.
     
  13. rydenfan

    rydenfan Well-Known Member

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    Have you considered hazel antique? I have been very impressed with the samples I've seen and am considering a makeup myself
     
  14. RogerP

    RogerP Well-Known Member

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    I can't say I'm surprised to hear that based on my very limited exposure to Bonafe suede. Thanks for chiming in. Suede Bonafe chukkas are definitely on my want list.
     
  15. dddrees

    dddrees Well-Known Member

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    For me the biggest law of diminishing return isn't any of the common differences usually mentioned. It's not the fact the leather might not be three times better, or even the fact that both might be a Good Year Welted shoe.

    In fact all of things typical of what you do get for the higher priced shoe is what makes it such an attractive deal for me. I like the fact that the leather is better, I like the better looking designs, the better soles, the better quality, the Lasts, and the greater attention to detail. These things are worth it to me.


    What I don't like is that given the same wear the shoe probably wont last any longer than the lesser expensive shoe with the type of shoes we typically talk about.

    However this is just one of the excuses I use to increase my rotation of shoes. LOL
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2015
  16. BrooksLauren77

    BrooksLauren77 Well-Known Member

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    Pics or it didn't happen.[​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2015
  17. bespoken pa

    bespoken pa Well-Known Member

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    I have a hazel dover already and love it but I'd I could procure a pair in the doak of my chelseas circa 2012 I would be a happy camper.
     
  18. bespoken pa

    bespoken pa Well-Known Member

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    All I know is I love the way EG looks on my feet and the quality of the finishing and lasts is apparent *to me*

    Value has some individualistic considerations to account for. I sincerely think EG does more right than any other marker for my tastes. So I pick up a GG here, Viberg there etc.

    The easiest way for me to put it in perpective is to say while the materials and construction may not be 3x better than manufacturer B my level of enjoyment and satisfaction is 3x greater.
     
    1 person likes this.
  19. dddrees

    dddrees Well-Known Member

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    Well said!!!
     
  20. Leaves

    Leaves Well-Known Member

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    I've said it before and I'll say it again: Enzo Bonafè is one of the most competitive makers out there. The craftsmanship (hand welted and amazing craftsmanship attention in every step of production) in combination with top materials and designs/lasts makes it hard to resist in my book. The suede is very, very nice, just look at those 3200MOD we rolled out recently (the style that looks like GG St.James).

    Bonafè calf is not burnished/antiqued as heavily or as well as G&G and EG though, but at half the price you can't expect this. They do a very subtle burnish with a pretty high shine as a standard finish and many clients actually prefer this.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2015

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