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Footwear Poll: conservative versus sleek

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by usctrojans31, Feb 19, 2013.

Which footwear style do you prefer: conservative or sleek?

  1. Conservative

    21 vote(s)
    60.0%
  2. Sleek

    14 vote(s)
    40.0%
  1. usctrojans31

    usctrojans31 Senior member

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    The footwear styling issue has been of particular interest to me of late with many conservative members chastising the sleeker of the group and the overall macro shift of the forum over the past 18 months or so. So for the sake of this poll/discussion, I thought it would be interesting to actually quantify the footwear issue. While some of the brands listed below as an example have models that cross into both areas, think of the macro codes of the brand.

    Conservative: John Lobb, Alden, Allen Edmonds, Crockett & Jones, Vass, etc.
    Sleek: Gaziano and Girling, Corthay, Berluti, Bontoni, Sutor Mantellassi, Carmina, etc.

    Begin debate.
     
  2. RSS

    RSS Senior member

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    It all depends upon the look one seeks to present. I've never liked the idea of everyone dressing alike.

    Of the shoes in my closet 78.8% are 'conservative' while 21.2% are 'sleek'.
     
  3. Xenon

    Xenon Senior member

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    The shoe must match the outfit. As such I prefer sleek outfits and this requires a sleek shoe
     
  4. upr_crust

    upr_crust Senior member

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    The brands listed in "conservative" vs. "sleek" have their own range of sleekness - Crockett & Jones is closer in sleekness to Carmina than the conservative look of AE (or bulkier Alden).

    As a matter of choice, I try to balance conservative and sleek, trying to find that middle ground in between. Whether that sends me to C & J or to Sutor Mantellassi depends entirely upon the particular pair of footwear . . .
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2013
    1 person likes this.
  5. Loathing

    Loathing Senior member

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    All of my recent purchases have been conservative round-toe oxfords from C&J or Church's.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2013
  6. kentyman

    kentyman Senior member

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    OP, please feel free to edit your original post by (generally) categorizing more brands some more brands: Church's, Tricker's, Loake, Alfred Sargeant, Edward Green, St. Crispin's, etc.
     
  7. Geezer

    Geezer Senior member

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    Not voting, because my choice is straight down the middle.

    Most of my shoes are EGs, any of which are much "sleeker" than AEs, without going to the excesses of some of the European makers.

    Lasts matter. EG 202s are conservative but not blobby, 82s are sleek without being radical, and 88s and 888s are in between.

    My regular rotation includes a few pairs of Churches on forgettable but inoffensive lasts like the 73 or 173 (never really checked which, I just wear the things), and a pair of Poulsen Skones of similar traditional but not excessively blobby shape. All less sleek than EGs, though not much less than a 202, and conservative without being clunky (see: Trickers). My few pairs of loafers are principally C&J made on the 69, which is a fairly sleek loafer last, at least by Bass Weejun standards, though not by French or Italian ones. And somewhere I have some old C&J punch-caps that are less "sleek" than their current offerings, but no more "conservative" than Church's current offerings.

    There is a happy medium, if you look for it. It is not a bad place to be.
     
  8. AlexE

    AlexE Senior member

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    What are shoes of classic stylings such as EG Chelsea, Asquith, Inverness, etc. on the 888 or 808 last or C&J Audley on the 337? Conservative? Sleek? Both?

    Whatever - they are perfect for me.
     
  9. gambit50

    gambit50 Senior member

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    Question has way too many variables. I want to say conservative but I wear one brand on the list and really dislike 2 others.
    And I don't find all of the 'sleek' brands to be so over the top.
    I think I would say, I like traditional style shoes done with elegance. The wheel is good enough, I just want a racing slick.
    Not that I don't fancy some new creations I see but most appear to be wacky for the sake of wackiness.
    I think another issue I have with some of the one offs if you move beyond the 'sleek' into the bespoke designs is that if a shoe requires a limited range
    of outfits for use, I cannot value it as highly as one that has a larger range.
     
  10. glenjay

    glenjay Senior member

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    It might be better to make the distinction between conservative and sleek using last models rather than brands in general. I think the EG 888 last and the JLP 7000 last are good examples of sleek; and the style I prefer.

    That being said, my collection is a pretty even mix because good looking shoes come in all shapes.

    I would define the range as the Alden Barrie last as about the most conservative and the EG 888 as about the most sleek.
     
  11. chogall

    chogall Senior member

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    I love the 'sleek' lasts in your 'conservative' brands, i.e., JL 7000/8000, C&J 348/358, Vass U. And I love the 'conservative' lasts in your 'sleek' brands, i.e., G&G GG06.
     
    2 people like this.
  12. usctrojans31

    usctrojans31 Senior member

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    As noted, there is a general flaw in the entire premise of this due to the variability amongst brands and the general subjectivity of what defines "sleek" and "conservative." What you consider sleek, I may consider conservative. For instance, I consider the JLP 7000 to be extremely conservative, yet glenjay considers it sleek.

    One of the things that I tried to consider was the true "heart and core of the brand."
     
    1 person likes this.
  13. lasbar

    lasbar Senior member

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    I love conservative shoes with a twist (clour,patina,quirky details)...

    I do qualify for both..
     
  14. HughJ

    HughJ Senior member

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    Exactly. It would be better left to debate lasts than brand names.

    Edit: as to the question at hand, I don't like to go far in either extreme.
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2013

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