best square-toed shoes

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Kent, Jun 5, 2012.

  1. Kent

    Kent Member

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    Hello,

    This is my first post here and I may be really getting off on the wrong foot by asking a question like this.... but, here goes anyway.

    This has to do with wierd feet and square-toed shoes, so anyone who gets grossed out or really agressive about these topics be warned. Personally, I don't really care much for the look of square-toed shoes either and much prefer the aethetics of round-toed shoes. However, unfortunately I have abnormally boxy feet - my pinky toe is pretty long (beyond the knucke of my big toe) and a little fat. Beyond that, on my right foot there's a big gap between my big toe and the narrow toes, which point away from the big toe. Any kind of sharp angle curving down crams in my toes and seriously crushes my pinky toe, resulting in considerable foot pain by the end of the day. I've tried lots of shoes and gone for a fitting at AE as well as Alden, and everybody has trouble finding shoes that fit me. Even at both of those shops the salepeople seemed to be a bit baffled by feet. I even bought a pair at AE that the saleman finally insisted would be right fit for me, but still crushes my toes mercilessly.

    My options seem to be the following:
    1. Wear rounded-toe shoes and just deal with the pain. (only possible with at least a day break in between)
    2. Wear rounded-toe shoes that are too long but don't crush my long pinky toe. (i.e. size shoe according to pinky toe instead of according to the longest toe.)
    3. Wear square-toed shoes.

    In practice, I do all three of these. The third option is a big relief for my feet, so I wear boxy shoes at least for casual wear. Rieker offer the most comfortable shoes for my feet I've found... I'm talking about really boxy stuff like this: http://www.ebay.de/itm/ws/eBayISAPI...9472&item=330457540180&lgeo=1&vectorid=229487

    I realize that shoes are supposed to make your feet more elegant, but I'm afraid my feet are naturally so inelegant that there's only so much that can be done. After a lot of doing option number 1 above, I'm finally trying to accept my feet for what they are instead of forcing them to be something they aren't.

    If I'm going to wear square-toed shoes - I emphasize for comfort reasons - what is the best I can do? Is this style offered by any of the better shoe makers? It seems to be a trend pushed more by fashion brands, and I haven't come across any Goodyear welted shoes that have a square toe. I'd like to find a higher quality kind of squared toe (very nice leather, welted construction) that I could at least wear for business casual. (Personally, I wear a sports jacket and usually even a tie for business casual.) Perhaps someone here can help. Does anyone else have a similar problem?

    PS
    For the record: I'm not asking forum members to please vent how much they hate the look of square toed shoes. I am already well aware that most people on these forums hold them for tasteless and ugly.
     


  2. F. Corbera

    F. Corbera Senior member

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    I should be done reading your post in about thirty minutes.

    Will respond then.
     


  3. Cant kill da Rooster

    Cant kill da Rooster Senior member

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  4. rikod

    rikod Senior member

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    ...
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2012


  5. TM79

    TM79 Senior member

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    Yeah, co-sign Option 2 if you can make it work.
     


  6. F. Corbera

    F. Corbera Senior member

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    I'm almost done reading the post.
     


  7. Master-Classter

    Master-Classter Senior member

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    option #4 - go get some bespoke (or at least Made To Measure) shoes?

    the last will probably be rather square and inelegant, true, but at least they'll be comfortable
     


  8. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Jewfro Dubiously Honored

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    have you tried option 2 before? does the shoe then slip a lot? i'd imagine at the beginning you'd trip a lot since the shoe would extend past where your feet usually would, but you'd get used to it before long.
     


  9. Xenon

    Xenon Senior member

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    Option #2 is probably the best with a really long but very narrow fitting. Narrow is very important so that you don't float in them since basically you will be sizing from the pinky and not by the ball, which is the normal reference point.

    BTW don't get hung up on goodyear welted. If you can find some quality blake rapid or just blake, squarish toes that is OK as well. I know I have seen some passable ones from a few (mostly) Italian makers.

    Actually perhaps a combination of the 2 above might yield something reasonably good looking. Also perhaps you could treat yourself to a bespoke pair that is done by one of the top tier independants like Delos or similar. You might be surprised how nice they can make your feet look since they start from scratch without a pre-existing last shape that is based on normal and can draft a pattern that may disguise alot of sin.

    Lastly I know off and have seen women get foot surgery to remove pinky toes and other deformities so they may fit RTW. There is a photo on the sartorialist somewhere where you can see a woman's foot that looks normal at a quick glance but upon closer inspection clearly shows a missing pinky. This is serious and alot more common than you might think.
     


  10. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Jewfro Dubiously Honored

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    lol @ people saying to go bespoke. dude is mentioning shoes in the $3-500 range with AE and Alden. A pair from Delos probably costs $3-4k.
     


  11. jeff13007

    jeff13007 Senior member

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    I personally hate the look of square toed shoes, and this really derives from the part of my life where it was considered "cool" to wear square toed gucci shoes. But you should always put your health before anything else and if it is causing you pain wearing rounded shoes then option 1 is def out of the question. I would only consider option 2 if you found a pair that didn't give you too much trouble while walking around, even if you get a size bigger and you manage to find a pair that doesn't slip (bigger size but narrower) the longer shoe will still bump into things because it is not a natural extension of your foot this coupled with the extra space already recommended in RTW shoes (although not to this extreme, anyone who has worn diving flippers will understand what I'm talking about). Bespoke is still you best bet but not many people can afford it, if you can then thats great, if not then just go with your 3rd option.
     


  12. Xenon

    Xenon Senior member

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    I would say he is in a desparate situation which may call for extreme measures. Besides 4K is still well within the means of a large number of population. He just has to grasp the possibility, that's the beautiful thing with shoes. High end cars or houses on the other hand are outside the means of most
     


  13. unbelragazzo

    unbelragazzo Jewfro Dubiously Honored

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    Sorry, I came off as more confrontational than I intended. I recognize you're just trying to help and give options, but sometimes I get a little flustered with all the people who respond to complaints with mid-priced items like BB suits or AE shoes by recommending bespoke everything. And...

    4k for a pair of shoes? Even putting aside the fact that if you pay 4k for a pair of shoes, you won't want to be wearing them every day, so this would either not solve his problem or cost even more than 4k, this is not within the means of many people. I don't know what you mean by "large number", but median household income in the US is around $50k. You think many people are willing to even consider spending nearly 10% of their annual household income on a single pair of shoes?
     


  14. jeff13007

    jeff13007 Senior member

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    It doesn't matter if its within his means. 4k is a lot of money to spend on something that can be avoided completely by just wearing square toed shoes.
     


  15. F. Corbera

    F. Corbera Senior member

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    Alright, I'm done reading your post.

    4. Perhaps you can try a RTW shoe with a high, roomy toe box. For example, a derby in the Central European style, as in this Ludwig Reiter:

    http://tinyurl.com/84yfcjj

    5. Perhaps you can find a dealer that specializes in fitting orthotics, like Moulded Shoe:

    http://mouldedshoe.com/
     


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