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Alligator / Crocodile Shoes

Blackpalms

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With all due respect, I have to disagree. The most important aspect of matching is to make the toes--what the customer sees first and always...match. The right shoe is cut from an area with a very regular (almost rectangular) set of tiles, the left is cut from an area that is irregular. Two different skins or cut from wildly different areas of one skin.
I only post here once in a while but have been reading along for a long time. I always love to read your comments so enlightening, honest and clear. To me you are the ultimate Crocodiles, Alligator expert here. Thank you for your insights on the matter. Looking for two equal pieces also seems very difficult to me, or is that not so difficult if i think?
 

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Blackpalms

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There is no way to tell short of actually examining the shoes / leather.

Generally speaking, the surest way to determine if a skin is embossed is to look for areas where the pattern repeats'...in detail or exactly, IOW. I don't see that here.

In crocodilians, certain areas of the flank will be comprised of round tiles that look similar...simply because they are round. But they'll never be exactly the same from one small area to the next or from one tile to the next.
Two alligators needed for this one.
 

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DWFII

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I only post here once in a while but have been reading along for a long time. I always love to read your comments so enlightening, honest and clear. To me you are the ultimate Crocodiles, Alligator expert here. Thank you for your insights on the matter. Looking for two equal pieces also seems very difficult to me, or is that not so difficult if i think?

Thanks for the kind words.

Both alligator and crocodile can be bought by the maker as small skins or large skins. The bespoke maker will almost always choose the small skins (small usually equals young and young animals produce the best and least scarred leather). So that means, ideally, one skin per shoe/boot. In order for them to match you have to deliberately order "matched skins".That said, like any other animal, alligators are individuals and that means that the tile patterns will never match perfectly on two different skins.

You also have to be a careful clicker. For instance, it is usually possible to cut the toe of a shoe either in the throat of the animal or in the lower belly, near the vent...but the tile patterns are not the same there, so you cannot cut one shoe in throat and the other in the pelvic area. You won't get a match. It is also possible to cut alligator/croc 'on the bias'...meaning such that the tlles run at a diagonal to the centerline of the shoe but that means the clicker (cutter) has to be mindful to make sure that the two vamps are mirror images of each other with regard to the direction of the tiles.

Oft times manufacturers, in particular, buy large quantities of skins to get a massive discount versus buying 'twosies' and 'foursies' but that means that not all will be prime or #1 grade skins much less matched skins. Also manufacturers often tend to want the larger skins . All of that means that matching components like toe caps...much less the whole vamp...becomes much more of a problem. And since the 'clicker' is more often than not a machine, in large operations, rather than a person with a knife in his hand, closely examining each skin and the placement of each pattern, matching almost becomes a matter of chance rather than intent.
 
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Blackpalms

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Thanks for the kind words.

Both alligator and crocodile can be bought by the maker as small skins or large skins. The bespoke maker will almost always choose the small skins (small usually equals young and young animals produce the best and least scarred leather). So that means, ideally, one skin per shoe/boot. In order for them to match you have to deliberately order "matched skins".That said, like any other animal, alligators are individuals and that means that the tile patterns will never match perfectly on two different skins.

You also have to be a careful clicker. For instance, it is usually possible to cut the toe of a shoe either in the throat of the animal or in the lower belly, near the vent...but the tile patterns are not the same there, so you cannot cut one shoe in throat and the other in the pelvic area. You won't get a match. It is also possible to cut alligator/croc 'on the bias'...meaning such that the tlles run at a diagonal to the centerline of the shoe but that means the clicker (cutter) has to be mindful to make sure that the two vamps are mirror images of each other with regard to the direction of the tiles.

Oft times manufacturers, in particular, buy large quantities of skins to get a massive discount vesus buying 'twosies' and 'foursies' but that means that not all will be prime or #1 grade skins much less matched skins. Also manufacturers often tend to want the larger skins . All of that means that matching components like toe caps...much less the whole vamp...becomes much more of a problem. And since the 'clicker' is more often than not a machine, in large operations, rather than a person with a knife in his hand, closely examining each skin and the placement of each pattern, matching almost becomes a matter of chance rather than intent.
The ultimate pair of shoes, are made from a twin crocodile or alligator. 😁
 

haloitsme

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I only post here once in a while but have been reading along for a long time. I always love to read your comments so enlightening, honest and clear. To me you are the ultimate Crocodiles, Alligator expert here. Thank you for your insights on the matter. Looking for two equal pieces also seems very difficult to me, or is that not so difficult if i think?
There is a whole spectrum of crocodile skins & scales that (I think) has not been tackled yet.
Example: newgenua croc looks different to Nilo or porosus. So has Siamensis both characteristics of alligator & crocodile (Porosus).
There are a lot of croc species which to some extend look different.

Just my 2 cents
 

Blackpalms

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There is a whole spectrum of crocodile skins & scales that (I think) has not been tackled yet.
Example: newgenua croc looks different to Nilo or porosus. So has Siamensis both characteristics of alligator & crocodile (Porosus).
There are a lot of croc species which to some extend look different.

Just my 2 cents
Which of this crocodile/alligator species are endangered species no shoemaker who touch them to make shoes when they are not possible to import. Or are these all bred in captivity, shoemakers probably prefer to use hides with good control in order to obtain the cites papers. Thai and Chinese do not make such beautiful shoes, although the skins will be more beautiful. They lack the Italian finesse and precision of Europeans. Americans.
 

haloitsme

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Which of this crocodile/alligator species are endangered species no shoemaker who touch them to make shoes when they are not possible to import. Or are these all bred in captivity, shoemakers probably prefer to use hides with good control in order to obtain the cites papers. Thai and Chinese do not make such beautiful shoes, although the skins will be more beautiful. They lack the Italian finesse and precision of Europeans. Americans.
All croc/alligator are on the highly endangered list (see appendix -Cites), some more some less. All of the crocs I have mentioned are legal & come with Cites (even siamensis), as they are bred in captivity.
As of precision, that is not true. Some Asian manufactures are just lazy where other may rival the best shoemakers.
 

Blackpalms

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All croc/alligator are on the highly endangered list (see appendix -Cites), some more some less. All of the crocs I have mentioned are legal & come with Cites (even siamensis), as they are bred in captivity.
As of precision, that is not true. Some Asian manufactures are just lazy where other may rival the best shoemakers.
You are right about that, I have also seen beautiful shoes from those countries. I was just too black and white in this case. Quite interesting the differences between freshwater, saltwater and the different crocodiles and alligators. I wonder who really has depth and knowledge about it, they are not everyday facts, not even for a shoemaker. What I say, they will still choose skins that they are familiar with, and those are the ones they are most likely to get hold of.
 
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Texasmade

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All croc/alligator are on the highly endangered list (see appendix -Cites), some more some less. All of the crocs I have mentioned are legal & come with Cites (even siamensis), as they are bred in captivity.
As of precision, that is not true. Some Asian manufactures are just lazy where other may rival the best shoemakers.
American gators are no longer endangered. I think they’re on the threaten list but still protected and regulated under CITES.
 

mr monty

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This is a large retail price for crocodile print? In the past, YOOX has mislabeled exotic skins.
 

JFWR

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Hey gentlemen, I have a friend of mine with a pair of alligator loafers. They cost 1500 dollars and because he's dumb, he never took care of them. They are very dried out and have what seems to be a separation in the scales. Is there a way to repair this kind of damage? I don't have pictures, but I can ask him to provide me some so I can share some.

I know next to nothing about reptile leather.
 

florent

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Hey gentlemen, I have a friend of mine with a pair of alligator loafers. They cost 1500 dollars and because he's dumb, he never took care of them. They are very dried out and have what seems to be a separation in the scales. Is there a way to repair this kind of damage? I don't have pictures, but I can ask him to provide me some so I can share some.

I know next to nothing about reptile leather.
Bespoke Addict did a couple videos about maintaining and repairing reptile leather (such as this one).
 

DWFII

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Be aware that once alligator or croc starts cracking, nine time out of ten, it will continue cracking. You can patch one crack and another will open up in a relatively short amount of time. And again and again.

Fundamentally once any leather, reptile or not, dries out past a certain point there is no restoring it. The life has gone out of it; it is 'dead.' Putting conditioner and more conditioner on it, only creates an oil sink. It will continue to crack, already existent cracks will open further, etc..The strength if the leather is gone.

It seems a tragedy but it's also the great appeal of all leather--at a certain point (esp. if neglected) it returns to the earth.
 

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