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Allen-Edmonds - Quality?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Lafont, Apr 9, 2010.

  1. TheWGP

    TheWGP Senior member

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    I think where I come out is:

    - the biggest problem with AE is lack of great designs, despite them having hundreds of models. the 7 or 8 classic AE designs are great

    - I wish they made more Chukkas and Boots. this is really where Alden kills them.

    - retail price for AE is a bit silly to pay, they are frequently discounted

    - used AE holds it value much worse than used Alden. you can frequently find barely worn AE in classic models for < $100 which less less than half of Alden.

    - prices on Ebay or here on B/S are MUCH lower than Alden


    This is a great list of points... I would add that the AE shell cordovans seem to be made to a better standard, with JR soles and so on - and so are much more comparable to Aldens than the "normal line" of AE's. That said, I have several AE's that I enjoy wearing just as much as some of my Aldens, at least the calfskin ones - though my tip-top favorites are all Aldens or English makes.
     


  2. phxlawstudent

    phxlawstudent Senior member

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    I have yet to find a better quality shoe for the prices I've paid for my AEs.

    Discontinued shoes are such a great bargain. I think AE is paying ME to take them off their hands. However, the classics like the PA never get discontinued and I've had to be patient to get a good deal on them. But I've gotten good pricing on those too.

    Cannot beat the value for dollar ratio when discounted.
     


  3. Geoff Gander

    Geoff Gander Senior member

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    However, the classics like the PA never get discontinued and I've had to be patient to get a good deal on them. But I've gotten good pricing on those too.
    +1 on getting good value when on sale. However, every so often I get a hankering for a pair of PAs or Fifth Aves, but am reluctant to pay $200+ for a pair (I've never seen either style go for less than around $220 - even for seconds - at their tent sales). Any thoughts on whether a pair of brand new PAs could be had for less than $140? Otherwise I'd go C&J.
     


  4. Scrounger

    Scrounger Senior member

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    I'm a fan of AE, but I buy mine elsewhere. So far, every pair I've seen at my local Nordstrom Rack looked like an unmarked factory second. I make this assumption based on blatant flaws in construction/finish. I understand others have been very pleased with the NR offerings though. Look them over before buying.
     


  5. phxlawstudent

    phxlawstudent Senior member

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    +1 on getting good value when on sale. However, every so often I get a hankering for a pair of PAs or Fifth Aves, but am reluctant to pay $200+ for a pair (I've never seen either style go for less than around $220 - even for seconds - at their tent sales). Any thoughts on whether a pair of brand new PAs could be had for less than $140? Otherwise I'd go C&J.

    During the shoe bank sale if you buy three. You can get seconds for $208 for the first one. $156 for the second one. $104 for the fourth one. That comes out to an average of $156 for three. Hmm... Guess you'd have to buy four to average less than $140 a pair. 4+ are 60% off too. Not sure if the shoe bank sale is going to always be around and with those discounts.
     


  6. ARW

    ARW New Member

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    Your experiences with Allen Edmonds men's footwear, please. How well do they wear? Has the leather scuffed too quickly? How about original soles - how long have they lasted?
    There's a pair of "the Alden" at Nordstrom's Rack - black kiltie slip-ons with the leather bow; the soles have black spots. Tag says compare at $225, selling for around $79.50 - something like that. Are AE's worth the high price, compared to most American shoes?
    My Bostonian Oxfords didn't wear too well, but I only have them because I had to return a Clarks (unstructured and they started scraping, my first replacement didn't fit well either, and the cheaper Bostonians were about my last choice in the store with the credit-only situation. Thanks.[​IMG]

    I've had a pair of Allen Edwards dress leather shoes for 12 years and they look as good as new. I highly recommend them. They really hold up. Paid nearly $200 for them and wear them frequently
     


  7. MyOtherLife

    MyOtherLife Senior member

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    I have around 20 pair of Allen Edmonds and I couldn't be happier.
    They have never once failed me. I receive endless compliments.
    I enjoy all day comfort with all the pair I own.
    I own 1 pair of Alden (966 Aberdeen last).
    It would be unfair to compare across the board but my Alden 966's have only one single feature above the AE's I own; that being a more cushioned insole.
    There are AE model that also boast a cushioned insole as well (Malone, Eastport to name 2).
    I will definitely buy more Allen Edmonds this year.

    The biggest issue against AE here on SF, seems to be the 360 degree welt that AE uses primarily, which makes for a more substantial (some would say chunky or blobby) appearance.
    This is purely a preference by those people for a 280 degree welt, offering a sleeker look in other makes & models.
    Allen Edmonds is offering new models of shoes this very year with the sleeker 280 degree welt
    so I, for one, am excited by this, although I very much enjoy the chunkier models.

    Overall quality of Allen Edmonds is great to excellent,
    and I personally see no justification for spending enormous amounts of money for the higher brands.
    I am a pavement pounder. I do not have lofty servants to drive me everywhere.
    I do not walk exclusively on marble floors and carpet.
    My Allen Edmonds shoes take a beating and they are a solid product.
    They, as we all know, are recraftable, and can be made like almost new again and again.
    The only reason I may stop wearing a pair of AE shoes, may be because I just bought a new pair of AE shoes and want to enjoy a newer model.

    My overall rating for AE is **** out of *****
     


  8. franz_sanchez

    franz_sanchez Well-Known Member

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    If you were to buy a good pair of dress shoes Allen Edmonds tend to be good for the price. I know they can be expensive but at least 1/2 the price in comparsion to other brands out there like Ferragamo, Bruno Magli, and other high end brands.

    If I weren't wanting to spend a lot of money on a high quality shoe I would go Mezlan. I don't know how good they are but they are Made in Spain. They make their shoes with Italian Leather. I have a pair and they seem to be pretty nice if you can get one with a Leather Sole. They retail for as low as around $170. I would think for the price Mezlan would me much better than any Cole Haan, Johnston Murphy or Kenneth Cole shoes that sell for about the same price.

    Most shoes that are made by brands like Cole Haan, Johnston Murphy and Kenneth Cole are are all made mostly in India or China. They force you to spend at least $250-$300 just to get any of their Italian Made shoes which isn't cheap. You can get Allen Edmonds shoes cheaper than that. Allen Edmonds makes shoes for as cheap as $200 and they are still Made in American. They should still be just as high of quality. I know with ebay they can easliy be had for around $100 which is even better.
     


  9. ferguscan

    ferguscan Senior member

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    At their street prices, the classic AE styles represent the finest value for money in quality men's shoes. Period.
     


  10. Brogued

    Brogued Senior member

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    I have met the guys who run AE a couple of times and visted their factory last December. I agree with makewayhomer that there are 7 or so classic designs that I like and a lot of models that I I am lukewarm on or truly dislike - for example, I really like the MacNeil longwing derbies but really don't like Boston monk strap.

    That said, the quality of AE's manufacture is good for a machine-made shoe. Is it better or worse that Alden? I would say that AE is on par - however, you will find features on run-of-the-mill Aldens that you will generally find on shell cordovan AEs, e.g. combination heels, leather (rather than PVC) welting, and to that extent I give an edge to Alden.

    Suffice it to say, AE is generally way ahead of Johnson & Murphy, Cole-Haan, et al.



    After this, there's not much else to say.
     


  11. Lafont

    Lafont Senior member

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    tjc4golf - You don't have to be so dumbfounded.... Yes, one can take the time to look through the "Search" link and find lots of stuff, and I have looked a little here and elsewhere, but I started this thread because I wanted some current opinions before I decided if I wanted to go on my lunch break again to have my Bostonians given new heels. You might notice many here are more than glad to praise or vent on this "tired" subject. We're having a good time with it. That's a lot of what this forum - and so many others - are about. In my case, I'd like current opinions - to the minute from individuals with product experiences up to the present, which may include recent styles and current quality assessment.[​IMG]
     


  12. ld111134

    ld111134 Senior member

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    After this, there's not much else to say.

    Thank you, B.
     


  13. CrocsRock

    CrocsRock Senior member

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    For those of us with bigger feet, they're pretty much the pinnacle of quality footwear. Alden does have a few styles that are available in larger sizes (I'm talking about in the neighbourhood of size 15), but for sheer selection and good quality, they're all I can really aspire to. Coupled with the fact that AE can frequently be had at deep discounts, and they become a bargain..
     


  14. Lafont

    Lafont Senior member

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    I tried on the AE &quot;Alton&quot; slip-ons and they weren't all that comfortable, so I ended up walking out with the Cole Haan oxfords - greatly reduced from a &quot;$250&quot; retail price. I'm wearing them gradually indoors. So far, so good.
     


  15. Motorsport226

    Motorsport226 Senior member

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    I tried on the AE "Alton" slip-ons and they weren't all that comfortable, so I ended up walking out with the Cole Haan oxfords - greatly reduced from a "$250" retail price. I'm wearing them gradually indoors. So far, so good.

    [​IMG]

    -226
     


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