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Do Allen Edmonds break in?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by SVS, Dec 2, 2008.

  1. otc

    otc Senior member

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    tell more of the OTC shoe stretch liquid

    Basically I put some of my "liquid" on your shoes and they stretch. Easy!
     
  2. SVS

    SVS Senior member

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    Sadly, none of the 20+ pairs of english shoes I have are nearly as comfortable as the $39.99 pair of Rockport DressSports that I never wear anymore. I like my leather shoes so I will just deal with it.

    I feel your pain. Cheap Rockport's are hard to beat for pure comfort.
     
  3. iroh

    iroh Senior member

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    Basically I put some of my "liquid" on your shoes and they stretch. Easy!

    ya, but make your own, that stuff in shoes stores is so overprices its basically water afterall. and if you don't to risk isopropyl alcohol on your shoes, you can just use water alone, it works just as well. i can attest to that.
     
  4. smoothie

    smoothie Senior member

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    Basically I put some of my "liquid" on your shoes and they stretch. Easy!


    I'll have nothing of the sort. Keep your "liquid" to your self chap!
     
  5. FreedBird

    FreedBird Senior member

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    Usually the fit of the AE welted shoes is pretty consistent, but the handsewns are a whole different ballgame. However, once in awhile the welted shoes can be lasted a bit tight. Generally the shoe should fit perfectly out of the box, but all shoes need to be broken in a bit and there is a difference between a snug fit here and a tight fit. Tight is bad. A bit snug will normally loosen up over time.
     
  6. 2Scoops

    2Scoops Senior member

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    the pair of AEs that i got softened up quite a bit after a week or two of wearing. i don't know if they stretched any.
     
  7. uiriamu

    uiriamu Active Member

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    At the ball of your foot, in a battle between the foot and the leather, the foot will win. I feel confident about that. I don't feel as confident about a battle between your toes and the leather, because your toes "give" pretty readily. On the other hand, depending on specifically where the tightness is, you may be able to solve the problem by stretching the shoe. That's what I had to do with one of my Lamberts. With my Delrays, the original fit was similar to what you describe, but the tightness around the toes was so borderline that I didn't bother with the stretching, and the shoes are comfortable now.
    How much do Allen Edmonds shoes stretch width-wise?

    Just got a pair of dark brown Allen Edmonds 5th Avenues in 9.5 C (same last 5 as the popular Park Avenue). All the proportions are great except my toes on my left foot seem to be a touch wider so the shoes pinch a bit against my toes (the balls of my feet fit nicely)

    Is this a deal breaker, or can I expect the shoe to stretch and widen or break in more comfortably over a short period of time? I don't have much experience with how AEs break in.

    If it's going to be a bad fit, any suggestions on similar shoes that would be narrow enough overall (come in C-width, etc), but might have a wider, more accomodating toebox?
     
  8. Mathew J

    Mathew J Senior member

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    How much do Allen Edmonds shoes stretch width-wise?

    Just got a pair of dark brown Allen Edmonds 5th Avenues in 9.5 C (same last 5 as the popular Park Avenue). All the proportions are great except my toes on my left foot seem to be a touch wider so the shoes pinch a bit against my toes (the balls of my feet fit nicely)

    Is this a deal breaker, or can I expect the shoe to stretch and widen or break in more comfortably over a short period of time? I don't have much experience with how AEs break in.

    If it's going to be a bad fit, any suggestions on similar shoes that would be narrow enough overall (come in C-width, etc), but might have a wider, more accomodating toebox?


    Why not move up to the D width? I have a pair of fifth aves in 10.5 E and they are a smidge snug on the right shoe from a width standpoint, only just got them and actually had to return them as they were ripped on the inside, waiting for my replacement pair in the mail as the shop was out of stock.

    I am debating getting a pair of PA's from the shoebank as I like the style but I have a wide flat foot, emailed AE about this since the 5 last isnt supposed to be good for that style to which they said that the 5/PA/FA is a very popular shoe and is good for any foot depending on if the size is right.

    I would think that it will stretch a bit in that area as you will be flexing around there...if your toes hit the front of the shoe or if the sides were super tight then that is something else, but just slightly tight on the sides of the toes IMHO isn't that bad...but it all depends on your own comfort level.

    My problem is I can never find shoes that stay put in the heels, my feet always slip enough to cause blisters until they break in which sucks.
     
  9. MyOtherLife

    MyOtherLife Senior member

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    Yes, AE's do stretch.

    To accelerate the process you can stretch them by spraying them lightly with a solution made of 3 parts water and 1 parts isopropyl alcohol and walking around in them for a couple of minutes.


    Will this method work on suede too?
     
  10. DocHolliday

    DocHolliday Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    How much do Allen Edmonds shoes stretch width-wise? Just got a pair of dark brown Allen Edmonds 5th Avenues in 9.5 C (same last 5 as the popular Park Avenue). All the proportions are great except my toes on my left foot seem to be a touch wider so the shoes pinch a bit against my toes (the balls of my feet fit nicely) Is this a deal breaker, or can I expect the shoe to stretch and widen or break in more comfortably over a short period of time? I don't have much experience with how AEs break in. If it's going to be a bad fit, any suggestions on similar shoes that would be narrow enough overall (come in C-width, etc), but might have a wider, more accomodating toebox?
    This same issue -- tightness at the toes on one foot -- keeps me away from most AEs. I tried a pair and thought they'd break in, but the leather was too thick and unforgiving. Even tried stretch fluid and no luck. Maybe I could have worn them in, eventually, but I have enough shoes that I wasn't going to punish my feet. I finally decided I'd be better off with a different brand with a more forgiving toebox, or at least with more supple leather.
     
  11. hth2002

    hth2002 Senior member

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    It's easier for them to break in, if they are tight on the ball of the feet than at the toe.

    Toes tend to flex and scrunch from the tightness. It lessens the pressure on leather and makes it hard to break in at the toes.

    If it's only a little snug, you can take them to a shoe cobbler. They will use a shoe stretching device and shoe stretch liquid to apply constant pressure in the toebox for a few days. The more stretching that is needed, the longer it will take. If it needs a lot of stretching, it's best to get the right shoe size. Excessive stretching could make the toe box look bloated compared to the rest of the shoe.
     
  12. uiriamu

    uiriamu Active Member

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    Thanks everyone. I've been focused on AEs because they're ubiquitous, come in all kinds of sizes, and can be had on deep discount even new.

    I've heard all the "what would you do if you started over" discussion about first buying top-notch shoes, so I don't want to scrimp now and pay later. Still it's a pretty big leap from $200 Fifth Avenues to $375 Aldens and C&Js from Pediwear.

    It makes sense that the shoes will stretch less width-wise just from toes. I could take another look at 9.5 Ds. Is there another last in AEs that offers a less tapered/more rounded toebox? Or another company/last you'd recommend? Doc Holiday?

    Thanks guys.
     
  13. DocHolliday

    DocHolliday Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    They're out there, but it will take some digging. And, if you're like me, the fit issue likely will require some trial are error. You can keep an eye on Brooks' site for sales -- it's not uncommon for shoes to drop to $200 in the clearance section. They have a great return policy if things don't work out. Also, RIDER, a member here, is the U.S. rep for Martegani and often lists styles on eBay for $150 and less -- sometimes substantially less. Ideally, though, you'd go and try the shoes on. Hit up Nordstrom Rack and other such discounters. (Even when buying in person, my fit issue can still make it tough to know what size to buy. I have a pair of boots that are either perfect or going to be a bit too tight. But trying 'em on is still better than not trying 'em on.)
     
  14. hth2002

    hth2002 Senior member

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    uiriamu,

    Did you buy the shoes online?

    It may be more convenient to have the shoe cobbler stretch the shoe than to ship them back. The shoe cobbler will charge $9-12 for a pair. That's about the same price as ground shipping.

    You can also try thinner socks.

    All the other AE lasts should provide more toe room. The 5 last is the most narrow and pointed last.
     
  15. Mathew J

    Mathew J Senior member

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    All the other AE lasts should provide more toe room. The 5 last is the most narrow and pointed last.

    And ironically one of their most popular
     
  16. uiriamu

    uiriamu Active Member

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    thanks, yes, I had them shipped. Good to know how much a shoe cobbler would charge.

    I'm deciding between keeping them and possibly having them stretched, or returning them and getting something else. What I probably need to do is get up to NY again in the next week or two and try on some actual Aldens and C&Js and see if I like them enough to spend just about twice as much.

    Really would hate to roll the dice and end up with shoes that don't really fit AFTER discovering SF.
     

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