Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by watchidiot, Feb 12, 2016.
Sorry, that's the Anniversary sale catalog.
Hope this the right thread for this comment.
Lately I've been researching lots of other shoes. I'm considering branching out into other brands, but there is of course a price point I won't go over. While I like the look of Crockett & Jones and some Alden shoes, they are both pretty much out of my price range. I don't want to pay more than $400 for a pair of shoes at this moment in time. I've come to realize I'm more of fan of the British styles than the Italian. So... I've been looking into other shoes. Loake's 1880 look promising, but are they really that much different than AE? I've read conflicting information on their quality. Sanders and Sanders is another British shoe company I've looked at. Price point is okay and the quality looks good, but I've having a hard time finding styles I like, as most of their shoes are casual. Also considering Randcourt, as it would be nice to support another American company, although they are at the limit of my desired price point. I know Randcourt had a history with AE some years ago.
Everyone raves about Carmina and Meermin, but they look a little too pointy to me, almost like women's shoes. I don't doubt their quality -- I've read a lot of great feedback on Carmina, and Meermin is often talked about as being a great value for their low price. There's several other brands not mentioned I've looked into as well, but I haven't really found another brand in the less than $400 price range that seems to have the styles I want. I keep thinking that I shouldn't buy only one brand and should branch out. If anyone wants to PM me that has had experience with any of these brands I've mentioned, I'd love to hear it if you have the time. Thanks for reading.
I have owned shoes from all the above manufacturers except Rancourt and C & J. All of this in my experience, so take with a grain of salt.
Loake 1880 is pretty much the equivalent of AE. If you're in the US there's no real reason to give up the flexibility that AE offers you—customer service, free returns/exchanges, ability to size in store and a range of widths. Plus, Loake's export restrictions limit your options in terms of buying in the US to East Dane/Amazon and a few stores, so unless there's a style that you really like, I don't see the point.
Ditto for Sanders.
As for Meermin, you have some plus points over AE—cheaper, and channelled soles and wheeled edges are a nice touch—but you have to balance against the minuses: expensive shipping/return costs, limited range of widths, QC potentially not as good.
Carmina is going to be above $400, and you have the same problems with sizing and returns unless you live near a stockist, but they are a lot nicer than any of the others I mentioned.
Rancourt's dress shoe collection isn't worth the price unless it's a really good sale. That's not to say that they are poorly made, just that their construction and materials are inferior to AE, but the same price.
Just in case anyone wondered what Ascher in oxblood looks like at 5am...(worked this same shift yesterday and today feels like a truck ran me over.) Pretty much zero natural light, all flash and a sexy loafer
Those look really nice. I have Aschers in Bourbon and they have wrinkled/creased more than any other AE shoe I have ever owned, and yes I always put shoe trees in.
Just saw that the bank has the Dalton Walnut Dainites listed for $197. Wasnt planning on adding anything new right now, but seems maybe too good to pass up as I've always wanted that shoe in walnut. Ignorant when it comes to dainite, however. Would love to hear some opinions - like it? hate it? indifferent?
CJ is a cut above AE, and worth the premium.
Alden's, seem a bit over hyped but that is solely my opinion.
Loakes 1880 are great shoes but too hard to get in the states now, and can be had on sale for $225 or so US time to time.
I eye Rancourt loafers at least once a week, haven't pulled the trigger yet but I feel like that's their bread and butter.
I was on the fence about Alden myself, mainly because there isn't a store close by like there is AE to me to try on their different models. I recently got an Alden for J Crew Indy boot and so glad I did. We'll see how it compares to my Dalton down the road however...
Thank you sir. My Patriots have more wrinkle than these so far, but I think it's only a matter of time before these ones do too. I think creasing is a good thing, means we're wearing our shoes instead of admiring them in shoe bags
Two questions for you gents:
1) Has anybody heard of Allen Edmonds criticizing people who return too many pairs of shoes? I wear 13EEE or 14E, and there are rarely shoes in my size to try on in stores. I'm beginning to worry that I return too many pairs in my search for the right fit.
2)The shoe bank has a pair of calf Patriots for $107 and shell Kenwoods for $297. Both of those seem like prices too good to pass up, but, at the same time, two new pairs of burgundy penny loafers seems like one too many.
I hear ya about high instep offerings. Also, it seems the Indy line has come adrift. First, they discontinue everything other than the Jefferson. They they seem to pull back on the quality/features but Jack the price to five bills, never have them on sale, and never have anything other than a handful in stores to try on. I was told if I wanted an Indy in an E width, I'd have to order a pair, which would then be made up and 6-8 weeks later I could try it on.
It's like they don't know what to do with the line. For $50 more I could order a Bonafe from Skoake and try it on in 4-5 days.
In calf, I don't think Aldens are worth the $100-150 premium over AE (and that's at list price, who pays list for AE?), but in shell, which is ALden's specialty, the premium is only around $50 and I think that can easily be justified.
I'm thinking about adding a pair of Alden PTBs in #8 shell to my collection in the near future, and possibly a pair of LWBs in cigar shell down the road.
The Dalton is an awesome boot (despite vaguely resembling Akyroyd in Coneheads from the top down), and walnut is its definitive color. As far as Dainite goes, I love it when there's a leather midsole. However, without one it can be rough going for the first 10 or so wears until the nubs wear down to match your gait. I'm not sure what the Dalton makeup was.
That seems like a screaming deal. I would reach out to the outlet and ask for a description of its condition. i had a really nice pair of seconds that I ended up selling because the shaft is just too loose for my chicken calves.
Honestly, Terry, what are they gonna do? NOT sell to you anymore?
But in the long term it might be more time efficient for you to visit a retail location (maybe even the NJ or Riverhead outlets), and nail your sizing in person. Who knows, maybe you'll pick something cool up when you go?
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