Carmina Shoe Question

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by papertiger26, Oct 5, 2011.

  1. papertiger26

    papertiger26 Active Member

    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    I am looking for a wingtip in burgundy, as I have the basics and many more "interesting" shoes covered. I have spoken with Betty from Carmina (prompt response time given some of the feedback on here and other forums, albiet dated) re: the Model 922c (Rain Last). They do not regularly make that model in burgundy, but can as a one off for an extra charge. With that charge, I would be looking around $500 (ex VAT) before shipping given the exchange rate. They do make the same model in burgundy on the same last in cordovan, and that would run only about $85 more given the customization fee on the calf model.

    My questions: Is Carmina still a good value with the one-off charge? Would it make more sense to just get the stock item in cordovan (I have never owned a cordovan shoe, so the advantages/disadvantages have only been read and still theoretical to me)? Should I just go the C&J Downing rout (Ben Silver) and avoid the international hassle and possible fit problems?

    I could also use help from anyone who has sizing experience with Carmina. Based on my foot dimensions, they suggested a 9 with their medium width. C&J on the 348 and 337 lasts would probably be the most useful comparison. For reference, I am an 8 1/2E C&J's 348 and 337 lasts and 9 1/2D AE 5 last.

    I view this type of shoe as a bit of an American business staple despite not being the most conservative shoe by many measures. That being said, finding one I like has been a pain. I have a pair of PAs and FAs from AE, but I feel I have other shoes that fit better and are aesthetically more pleasing. Therefore I am not that interested in the McAllister.

    Thanks in advance for all your help.
     
  2. Gdot

    Gdot Senior member

    Messages:
    5,248
    Likes Received:
    273
    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2011
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    To me the fundamental question is whether or not you want to have a shoe in shell. Not so much the price comparison between the two.

    Ultimately the shoes will have a totally different attitude in shell than they would in calf. The shell will make a shoe that is more substantial and less 'formal' in overall attitude than the same shoe in calf. So you have to decide if this works for your needs.

    If so, then I say go for the shell and give yourself the opportunity to judge for yourself. Nothing looks like a shell shoe - it's a beautiful thing.

    The price is good for the shoe and quality.
     
  3. lexmann

    lexmann Senior member

    Messages:
    410
    Likes Received:
    18
    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2008
    Location:
    Richmond, B.C. Canada
    My shoe sizes:

    Carmina Rain last 8.5
    C&J 337 & 348 last 8.5

    Lengthwise, I think Rain last and 337 last are about the same.
     
  4. hendrix

    hendrix Ill-proportioned

    Messages:
    9,457
    Likes Received:
    3,716
    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2009
    
    Depends on your standards for value, but, IMO, yes.
     
  5. david123

    david123 Senior member

    Messages:
    608
    Likes Received:
    5
    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2010
    Location:
    New York, New York
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2011
  6. Gdot

    Gdot Senior member

    Messages:
    5,248
    Likes Received:
    273
    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2011
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    OMFG - You'd have to be certifiable if you don't order those..........................................:drool:

     
  7. david123

    david123 Senior member

    Messages:
    608
    Likes Received:
    5
    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2010
    Location:
    New York, New York
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2011
  8. papertiger26

    papertiger26 Active Member

    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    The price without customization and ex VAT are (as given to me) €276 for calf and €420 for shell cordovan. Shipping was quoted at €70.

    Lexmann, I have seen a wide variety of size comparisons. You mention you take the same size, and I have read other places that people did a complete size up or size down referencing the same shoes (EGs, which I do not have experience with). Were your carminas on the rain last, as do ou have any idea what could account for such drastic variances? Does anyone else have a good reference point?

    I think I am going to go with the shell if I can feel more comfortable on the sizing. I am a bit intrigued by them now, this seems like a good model to get them on, and I would not have had them made to order if I still somehow get the size wrong.
     
  9. lexmann

    lexmann Senior member

    Messages:
    410
    Likes Received:
    18
    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2008
    Location:
    Richmond, B.C. Canada
    

    Yes, mine are off the Rain last ( 3 pairs). I know it's hard to decide your size as the more answers you get from others, the more confused you will become. May be you listen to what Carmina suggests?
     
  10. papertiger26

    papertiger26 Active Member

    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    Thanks, Lexmann. I was going to go with Carmina's suggestion, but Betty had no experience with C&J or AE. I emailed their Paris shop to see if they could help me as well. I will see if I have any better luck there.
     
  11. PipersSon

    PipersSon Senior member

    Messages:
    1,544
    Likes Received:
    137
    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2011
    OP, how are you going to send them the money? I'm having this dilemma as well - my bank is charging a fee for a wire transfer which, while not an enormous sum, just adds to the final acquisition cost. Factor in the customs duty that you could get, hit with and it all just adds up. Any suggestions or are you going to eat all the costs?
     
  12. Newcomer

    Newcomer Senior member

    Messages:
    5,133
    Likes Received:
    4,428
    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2009
    The only thing I am going to say, is that different Carmina lasts fit me differently. For example... the Rain last simply does not work for me, while the Inca last fits like a dream. Just food for thought before you order a one-off shoe in a last that you have never tried before :)

    And in my experiences--Inca last I am a size 9 regular (can't remember if it is E or F), in Rain my feet just would not agree with the last, but I guess I was somewhere between a 9 and 9.5... I am a 9E UK in C&J, 9.5E UK/10US in Edward Green, 10D in Allen Edmonds, etc.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011
  13. theyare

    theyare Senior member

    Messages:
    2,224
    Likes Received:
    30
    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2008
    Location:
    91716049311
    Anywhere online that sells Carmina?
     
  14. tchoy

    tchoy Senior member

    Messages:
    1,467
    Likes Received:
    1,687
    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2004
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    

    The Armoury
     
  15. theyare

    theyare Senior member

    Messages:
    2,224
    Likes Received:
    30
    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2008
    Location:
    91716049311
    

    Thanks! unfortunately, no cordovan...
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011

Share This Page

Styleforum is proudly sponsored by