Alden lasts and fit

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by ThinkDerm, Dec 25, 2009.

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  1. ThinkDerm

    ThinkDerm Senior member

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    Alden shoes - how do they fit?

    Anyone have any input on lasts?

    .........................................................................................................................................................

    http://aldenshoe.com/cat_ortho.htm

    http://www.alden-of-carmel.com/index.cfm/fitting.htm

    The key to fitting Alden shoes is the knowledge that Alden uses different "lasts". The last is the form, in the shape of a foot, which the leather is stretched over to make the shoe. Lasts are made in different shapes. Some lasts have broad, round toe areas (toe box), and some lasts have more narrow and pointed toe boxes.

    Because of the different last shapes, the various Alden shoe models fit differently, and vary in size. Some models fit approximately 1/2 size larger than others.

    The most popular Alden lasts, and their relative sizes compared to usual U.S. shoe sizes are:

    Leydon last - fits approximately like a standard US size
    Plaza last - slightly longer than regular U.S. size
    Aberdeen last - slightly longer than regular U.S. size
    Van last - 1/4 to 1/2 size larger than regular U.S. size
    Barrie last - about 1/2 size larger than regular U.S. size (U.S. size 10 = Barrie last size 9 1/2)
    Trubalance last - about 1/2 size larger than regular U.S. size (U.S. size 10 = Trubalance size 9 1/2)
    Modified last - at least 1/2 size larger than regular U.S. size (U.S. size 10 = Modified last size 9 1/2)

    Each Alden shoe is marked inside with its model number and size.

    The model number is usually a three or four digit number such as 986, or 9901, etc...

    The size is always written as the length of the shoe, and under that, the width of the shoe, such as:

    9 10 1/2
    or
    C/E B/D

    In these examples, 9 and 10 1/2 are the length, and C/E and B/D are the width.

    In U.S. shoe sizing, the widths are: A & B = Narrow, C & D = Medium, E, EE & EEE =Wide.

    Inside each Alden shoe, the width of the shoes are written as:

    A/C, B/D, C/E, etc.....

    The width is written as a 'fraction', and the bottom of that 'fraction', (the denominator) is the width of the shoe.

    Example: C/E = E width, or B/D = D width
     
  2. coltboy75

    coltboy75 Senior member

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    I would love to see a chart comparing Alden's lasts to Allen Edmonds. That way I can order with more confidence.
     
  3. sw20

    sw20 Well-Known Member

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    Obviously foot ergonomics vs any last vary based upon individual

    I ordered several prs of Alden full-strap blk cordovan shell loafers (Aberdeen last) from shoemart (efficient online ordering; free shipping; no sales tx) having never worn Aldens before (and I despise shopping so I avoid needing to visit a brick-and-mortar store if possible); fit very comfortably from day one...and since, I exclusively wear these loafers 7d/wk

    IMO, it's the only Alden design that's somewhat modern/minimalist but is ~50% cheaper (and perhaps more durable; and shell cordovan seems to require no wasted time/effort w/polishing nonsense) than similar quality loafers from the famed UK/EU brands...and after heavy daily use (I rotate my Aldens daily but wear them 7d/wk as I own no other shoes), I relegate worn-out loafers to rain duty or garbage bin....I view the restoration stuff or odd colors/styles as making no economic sense for ~$500 daily loafers
     
  4. ThinkDerm

    ThinkDerm Senior member

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    Anyone want to describe their personal experiences with alden lasts - fitting true to size, more / less room in the toebox, width, etc
     
  5. Siggy

    Siggy Senior member

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    I have a standard to wide size 10 D foot. In size 10 D the Alden Hampton last fits me the best, followed by the Plaza last. The Plaza last seems to have a bit more room in the heel than the Hampton, so that Plaza fits me great in a boot but in a shoe moves a bit much in the heel. In the Barrie last I wear a 9.5 D, which from the outside looks exactly the same size as a 10 D in the other lasts, but the fit is actually just a bit snugger than 10 D in other lasts.

    Overall I find that Aldens fit true to size, but the Barrie (and Trubalence) lasts fit 1/2 size too big. I think the Plaza last is probably the most elegant because it has a bit of a chiseled toe, but the Hampton last also has more of a chiseled toe than the round Barrie. I have enough room for my toes in all of the Alden lasts, the problem for me is more in getting the heel and arch to fit right.
     
  6. Limniscate

    Limniscate Senior member

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    I believe I have the flex-welt chukkas on the Leydon last; the model number is 1493. They do not seem to fit TTS. I would say that they fit a half size large. I think I'm a 8D on the AE PAs.
     
  7. Rusty G.

    Rusty G. Senior member

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    I think it depends on what style you're buying.

    Check out the following link from Alden of Carmel:
    http://www.alden-of-carmel.com/index.cfm/fitting.htm

    I purchased a pair of Alden Black high boots in Cordovan leather on the Plaza Last from Alden of Carmel. Great boots and highly recommended. Anyway, the various "lasts" are described on the link. Hope this gives some of the information you need.

    Good luck!
     
  8. alliswell

    alliswell Senior member

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    Aberdeen fits not long but wide - I needed tongue pads on my 9 B/Ds split-toe loafers, and I've a high instep.
     
  9. vezatron

    vezatron Senior member

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    The modified last asks you to size down .5. I concur with this recommendation.
     
  10. ThinkDerm

    ThinkDerm Senior member

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    Aberdeen fits not long but wide - I needed tongue pads on my 9 B/Ds split-toe loafers, and I've a high instep.

    anyone else have this same experience with the aberdeen last- fitting wide but not long?
     
  11. zippyh

    zippyh Senior member

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    anyone else have this same experience with the aberdeen last- fitting wide but not long?

    Not at all.
    For me, it's slightly long and perhaps even somewhat narrow.
    Definitely not wide.
     
  12. ThinkDerm

    ThinkDerm Senior member

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    Not at all.
    For me, it's slightly long and perhaps even somewhat narrow.
    Definitely not wide.


    yeah, I have a pair of loafers on the aberdeen in E, definitely narrower than most E fitting shoes. dont find it fits any longer than true to size.
     
  13. MS007

    MS007 Senior member

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    I believe I have the flex-welt chukkas on the Leydon last; the model number is 1493. They do not seem to fit TTS. I would say that they fit a half size large. I think I'm a 8D on the AE PAs.

    I own the exact same model and it fits me perfect width wise, but it is slightly to long. I have a little bit more than a thumb left. Size is 8.5 E. Sole measurements are 30 x 11 cm. But my feet are very wide.

    I am an 8.5-9 otherwise so I would say the Leydon is slightly longer but not half a size.

    -MS
     
  14. Tarmac

    Tarmac Senior member

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    long? that doesn't really mean anything. your toes shouldnt touch the front. shoes either fit large or not large

    I find aberdeen to fit 1/4 large
     
  15. Limniscate

    Limniscate Senior member

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    So I went to the actual Alden store in SF and got my real sizing.

    So I'm a 7.5E in the Leydon, 6.5E in the Barrie and Trubalance, and a 7D in the Plaza.
     

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