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Alan Macafee Bespoke Sea Turtle Slip-Ons

pejsek

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Well, I think I've been promising pictures of these for at least a year. I had initially believed them to be alligator. I'm always excited to find old bespoke things and I thought this was quite a find since Macafee bespoke seems to be exceedingly rare. After a post here about these shoes, Paul Davies (The London Shoemaker) kindly wrote to tell me that he had worked for Macafee some time ago and that as far as he could remember Macafee had only used sea turtle for their bespoke shoes (alligator, apparently, being just a bit too pedestrian). I, of course, have not spent a great deal of time comparing sea turtle hides, but the skin on these shoes is certainly quite soft and supple--much more so than has been my experience with alligator or crocodile. One of the interesting design features of these shoes is the way the mid-section above the waist is constructed using two pieces of skin. It's a nice piece of craftsmanship, arising, I suspect, from the fact that large pieces of sea turtle are hard to come by. The shoes do fit me quite nicely. Generally they're in great shape with no scuffs or gouging and the stitches just beginning to poke through the chanelled soles at a couple of points. The heels, however, are full leather and very worn-down at the back. In the best of all possible worlds I'd get someone to put on a pair of the old school Phillips heels so favoured by the Japanese.
This was my first go at image hosting. I couldn't get the clickable thumbnails to work. I hope it's not too much trouble to use these direct links.

http://img176.imageshack.us/img176/5512/img0700vl1.jpg
http://img247.imageshack.us/img247/640/img0699ji4.jpg
http://img152.imageshack.us/img152/8926/img0702ry8.jpg
http://img86.imageshack.us/img86/9093/img0701rd9.jpg
 

j

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Thank you very much for the pictures. I have a pair of McAfee bespoke alligator loafers, which you can clearly see are not the same type of skin (much squarer and more regular scales):

http://www.styleforum.net/showpost.p...&postcount=197

so I think your source might have been mistaken. In any case, yours are very nice. Try not to get arrested by the sea turtle police.
 

pejsek

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j, that's very interesting. I must have somehow missed your find; I remember the Church's shoes but not these. I'm only passing on what I recall Mr. Davies writing to me--the original message was lost in the crash. I do remember thinking it odd at the time that a bespoke maker would refrain from using a well-accepted skin such as alligator. But the more I looked at my particular shoes the more I became convinced that they weren't alligator (so that part made sense).
Where did you find your loafers? If you still have them I'd be curious to know what they look like inside. The sock liner in my shoes is worn and faded, but it appears to show only the polo player and Alan Macafee; no Dover St, London, etc. The order # is written on the outer side and is s.thing in the neighborhood of 499195 and then below that 7649.
 

chobochobo

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Both pairs of very nice. I received my first few pairs of 'exotic' leather shoes: Mezlan Crocodiles, Florsheim Snake skin and a pair of Ostrich leather shoes. The Florsheims are pretty cheap, reflected by the almost cardboard-like sole, but otherwise look pretty nice. Those Mcafees are nice; I have a pair in Cordovan which are gorgeous.
 

AlanC

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Uh oh. Pejsek is sending subtle messages to his comrades:



What's this 'Soviet Photography' book not so discreetly pictured in the back, sir?




(Cool shoes, pejsek!
)
 

stach

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I do not find the styling on these shoes attractive. The alligator looks less pimpish.
 

pejsek

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AlanC said:
Uh oh. Pejsek is sending subtle messages to his comrades:

I suppose I should know better than to post pictures in front of anything so revealing as a bookcase. 'Soviet Photography' certainly stands out but is almost surely a red herring. Don't you think 'Roman Art in the Czech lands and Moravia' holds just a bit more portent?
Anyway, thanks Alan, for incorporating the picture into the thread. I'll have to learn how to do that. You can really see the details clearly at this size. Another interesting feature I neglected to point out in my first post is that the strap across the vamp actually conceals another point where the skins are sewn together. The large pattern skin used on the top must make up only a small section of each poor turtle. Oh, the carnage!
 

j

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Originally Posted by pejsek
j, that's very interesting. I must have somehow missed your find; I remember the Church's shoes but not these. I'm only passing on what I recall Mr. Davies writing to me--the original message was lost in the crash. I do remember thinking it odd at the time that a bespoke maker would refrain from using a well-accepted skin such as alligator. But the more I looked at my particular shoes the more I became convinced that they weren't alligator (so that part made sense).
Where did you find your loafers? If you still have them I'd be curious to know what they look like inside. The sock liner in my shoes is worn and faded, but it appears to show only the polo player and Alan Macafee; no Dover St, London, etc. The order # is written on the outer side and is s.thing in the neighborhood of 499195 and then below that 7649.

I'll see if I can dig them out and take a look. I do know that the label said "Quist's London Shop, Seattle, WA" or something like that.
 

LabelKing

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Originally Posted by pejsek
I suppose I should know better than to post pictures in front of anything so revealing as a bookcase. 'Soviet Photography' certainly stands out but is almost surely a red herring. Don't you think 'Roman Art in the Czech lands and Moravia' holds just a bit more portent? Anyway, thanks Alan, for incorporating the picture into the thread. I'll have to learn how to do that. You can really see the details clearly at this size. Another interesting feature I neglected to point out in my first post is that the strap across the vamp actually conceals another point where the skins are sewn together. The large pattern skin used on the top must make up only a small section of each poor turtle. Oh, the carnage!
A thread bump to be sure, but I thought I'd remark that the skins used are actually from the flippers, shoulders and neck area of a sea turtle which given its relative size, is not very large in terms of usability.
The skin has much rounder scales than the reptile skins and appears very smooth:
 

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