AE Strand Cordovan Problem - Please Help!

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by ymmt, Nov 21, 2011.

  1. ymmt

    ymmt Well-Known Member

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    I'm a long time lurker and first time poster here. I've learned a lot through SF and wanted to bring up a problem I'm having with my new Strand shells. I'm hoping someone can recommend a fix because I really like these shoes and would hate to have to return them.

    The problem I'm having is this: The collar (top line?) of the shoe bends outward excessively. It's so serious that I can fit multiple fingers in the gap and that it's already causing some creasing along the quarter.

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    I've tried massaging the leather, shifting my weight, and all types of lacing (You can tell in the above that the left foot is tied pretty tight). I just can't get it to conform correctly! I think part of the problem is that I have very flat feet and the weight distribution could be causing this.

    The most annoying part is that I have AE Ashtons and Fifth Aves, and neither exhibit this problem. Further, I tried on another pair of Strand Cordovans at the local AE store (Same Size/Width) and it didn't exhibit this problem. Although, I'm almost certain that the shell at the AE Store was different than the one I own because the color and the finish were completely different. They looked like chocolate brown, much lighter than the ones I have.

    Does anyone have any suggestions about getting this fixed? Did I get a bad batch? Should I ask for a replacement or just a refund?

    I really like the way these shoes look and would hate to see them go. Have a look:

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    Ideas?
     


  2. meister

    meister Senior member

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    Badly made if you other 5 lasts jobs fit perfectly. Strand is a 5 last from memory no es verdad? Back they go.
     


  3. lostron

    lostron Senior member

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    Great looking shoes! My next purchase will be these same shoes and color.

    Just return them if the problem persists, otherwise try to replace the insoles with something thicker?
     


  4. MyOtherLife

    MyOtherLife Senior member

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    Welcome to Styleforum.
    Thank you for providing photos. You tried on another identical pair in the store that did not exhibit this symptom, but purchased these instead? Why did you not purchase the other pair?
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2011


  5. sportin_life

    sportin_life Senior member

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    Strangely I have the same problem with my strands (although mine are not cordovan). They seem to be slightly bigger than other shoes on the same last.
     


  6. XKxRome0ox

    XKxRome0ox Senior member

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    would someone be that dumb...? actually nevermind that since there are some incredibly dumb people in the world
    but it should be obvious that the OP went to the AE store AFTER he got his problematic pair to check if the "problem" was something that existed in other strands in shell
     


  7. MyOtherLife

    MyOtherLife Senior member

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    :lol:

    It should be, though I don't want to assume this to be the case until the OP clarifies.
    I believe he stated the other (better fitting pair) were a different colour, and perhaps he preferred the colour of the ones he now has?
    We'll have to wait and see :lurk:
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2011


  8. ymmt

    ymmt Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the input guys.

    I actually ordered my pair back in Oct during their sales event but had to wait a month before they got to me (seriously backordered). They didn't have my size in the retail stores back then. After they arrived, I tried them on, noticed the problem, then called around to see if any nearby stores had the same style in my size. The one closest to my office did and I went straight over to try them on.

    The bulging on the instore shells were no more pronounced than with my other AEs (in other words, I would've been happy if my shells exhibited it to the same degree), except, as I noted before, the color was much lighter and hazier than the deep brown in the pics above. I have the opportunity to exchange my shells for the ones instore, however I do not want that pair in particular because of its odd color and because they looked nothing like the ones I owned.

    Before making the purchase back in Oct, I also tried on the walnut Strands just for fitting purposes, but I don't think I noticed this phenomenon. I will go back to AE again today to try on a pair just to verify.

    I think my only option is to exchange them (directly to their warehouse) and wait for another pair. I think insoles might help as well since I believe my flat footedness is the cause of this. There are other owners of the shell Strands on SF who have posted pics and they fit perfectly around the ankle. However, I do have Fifth Aves which are of the same last (5), and they fit great. For reference I'm 5'11 and 150lbs.

    I highly recommend the shoes, they look and feel absolutely phenomenal.
     


  9. swiego

    swiego Senior member

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    For what it's worth, my shell cordovan Cambridges have a somewhat similar problem - there's some looseness at the collar on the sides. It does not impact wearability, but it has been enough for me to make note of it.
     


  10. ymmt

    ymmt Well-Known Member

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    That's useful info. Did you get the Cambridges fairly recently? I'm wondering if something changed in their cordovan manufacturing process because the other Strand shells definitely seemed older but the collar was fine.
     


  11. bucksfan

    bucksfan Senior member

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    I have the Park Ave (5 last) and shell Strands. I do not have the problem you are showing in either of these shoes, nor any of my other AEs - though I have a medium arch and medium instep. I would exchange these - you won't ever be completely satisfied, and for the price you should be.

    I also will note that my shell strands arrived at my doorstep in a light brown, with a hazy appearance. A few minutes with a horsehair brush cleaned them up, and an application of the AE brown shell cordovan cream darkened them a bit.
     


  12. PipersSon

    PipersSon Senior member

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    Can someone speak to the quality of AE cordovan and compare it to other brands? Thus far my experience is limited to C&J and Florsheim shell. I like the look of th tran, hence my question.
     


  13. REguy

    REguy Senior member

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    I had a pair of Lombards that did the same thing around the collar. I returned them. Not worth keeping a pair of shoes if they don't fit the way you want them to.
     


  14. ymmt

    ymmt Well-Known Member

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    I'm going to exchange them and give AE one more chance. I'm hoping it's just a one-off problem with this pair.

    I guess an interesting question would be whether any of you would keep the shoes given my situation. Seems like swiego kept his Cambridges even with the collar slightly loose. The pant leg usually would cover the bulging, but I fear the creasing will just get worse over time.
     


  15. pebblegrain

    pebblegrain Senior member

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    This is an AE problem (or "feature"), not a strand problem. Seen it many many times
     


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