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How do you justify spending $500+ on shoes?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by JezeC, Dec 27, 2013.

  1. JezeC

    JezeC Senior member

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    This is really out of curiosity for the people that frequently purchase shoes in the range of $500+

    Personally for me, I would only buy them if I see myself wearing them as staple items (probably wearing them at least 1x a week or at the very least 1.5x in two weeks.

    For shoes that are a bit playful, flamboyant or whatever, I don't think it's necessary to buy this type in quality form since it will hardly be worn aside from a few occasions...

    Not to start a perpetual flame war or anything, but I find shoes such as the Strand to be in the category of "hardly worn", at least for me, while dark brown captoes and burgundy wingtips dominate my weekly wardrobe.

    So for shoes with scotchgrain or python material, how often do people really wear these footwear to justify the expense?
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013
  2. RogerP

    RogerP Senior member

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    Justify to whom? I buy them, I wear them, I enjoy them. I like the way they look and I like the way they feel. They aren't placed on a pedestal and kept in pristine condition - but they are well cared for. Some are worn more than others, but all get worn. I don't feel I need any further justification beyond that.
     
    8 people like this.
  3. JezeC

    JezeC Senior member

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    I guess more or less to justify the logic behind spending $500+ on rarely worn shoes when you can just buy something similar at a lower quality. Nice shoes are generally expensive because of its durability, but that may not be an issue with shoes that are hardly worn.
     
  4. RogerP

    RogerP Senior member

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    What does hardly worn or rarely worn mean to you?

    I don't think logic is the definitive criterion when purchasing premium / luxury items. A larger number of less expensive shoes might indeed last as long if worn within a large rotation. For you, it may not "make sense" to spend more on a premium shoe if all you are concerned with is miles per dollar of shoe leather.
     
  5. MacktasticGDogg

    MacktasticGDogg Senior member

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    For me, the justification for buying a certain pair of shoes is whether I can wear them reasonably often (keeping in mind I have a relatively large shoe collection, at least by non-SF standards) and whether I can afford it. For shoes I know will probably get less wear, I'm actually more inclined to spend more because in my mind they end up lasting longer. There's really not much logic to it once you reach a certain point though. The only reason I can offer for most of the shoes I own is that I like them and am fortunate enough to be able to afford them.
     
  6. dohare

    dohare Senior member

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    $500 can mean different things to different levels of income. when you say Strand do you mean AEs? at $345..and the service AE provides, i think it's well worth it. I'd wear them weekly if i had a pair.
     
  7. laufer

    laufer Senior member

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    It is easy. You just start frequenting the Style Forum and soon you will be justifying a purchase of $5000 John Lobb bespoke shoes.
     
    3 people like this.
  8. Claghorn

    Claghorn Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    For cordovan, definitely worth it. They'll last you forever and a half. They might even save you money in the long run.
     
  9. bings

    bings Senior member

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    Diminishing Returns.

    After a while of wearing nice clothing and shoes you just can't get the same satisfaction out of a pair of $300 shoes as you did when you moved up from $100 ones... you have to spend $500 just to feel like you did something :)

    This is the purely emotional argument.
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013
    2 people like this.
  10. dddrees

    dddrees Senior member

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    As Roger said I don't have to justify this to anyone. However I currently do not service any debts of any kind so this makes it a whole lot easier to purchase nicer things I like to wear.
     
    2 people like this.
  11. Garasaki

    Garasaki Senior member

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    Yeah so...staple shoes are definitely one of my criteria for spending that much on shoes.

    I'm not planning on buying any python shoes, 500 bucks or no....

    From your post, it seems like you are saying "spending 500 on staple shoes makes sense" but the title is "how do you justify spending 500 on shoes" and the answer really is...are they something you'll wear a lot (ie staple). At least for me.

    On the other hand, there are probably those on this forum and elsewhere who have the resources to spend 500 or more on non-staple shoes...and frankly I don't think they have to justify their spending.
     
  12. bourbonbasted

    bourbonbasted Senior member

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    How to Justify $500+ Shoes Based on SF Post Count

    1 - 1,000 posts -- "You're buying quality footwear. It's an investment and the shoes will last for way longer!"

    1,001 - 2,000 posts -- "I'm supporting traditional, artisan manufacturing processes and investing in quality while taking a stance against disposable fashion!"

    2,001 - 3,000 posts -- "Well I haven't bought a pair of shoes that retailed for less than $500 in over a year, so..."

    3,001 - 4,000 posts -- "I like nice things so I buy nice things. Justification is a coping mechanism that suggests you have no business buying expensive shoes."

    I'll let you know how that scale progresses once I break 4,000 posts.
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013
    16 people like this.
  13. dddrees

    dddrees Senior member

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    I like this, and to some extent this is true.

    Reasons change not just do to post count, but the amount you have purchased and time you've been buying them.
     
  14. archetypal_yuppie

    archetypal_yuppie Senior member

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    This is generally false.

    Sure, they have better quality via better craftsmanship, materials, and construction. But people that pay meaningfully more for shoes thinking it will save them money via longevity will in most cases be proven wrong.

    The value is in wearing a superior shoe for the time that you are wearing it, not in purchasing durability.
     
  15. Cleav

    Cleav Senior member Moderator

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    Glib answer - because they're better (on the whole)

    Glib answer 2 - because some people can

    This need not be about footwear, good, bad or indifferent…

    How do you justify spending $XXXXXXX on a wristwatch

    " $ XXXX Tie

    " $XXXXXXX Car

    etc, etc

    Work hard, play hard and take your pleasure where you see fit.
     
    1 person likes this.
  16. RogerP

    RogerP Senior member

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    ^^^ What Cleav said.
     
  17. in stitches

    in stitches Senior member Moderator

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    awesome scale, bb.

    i dont think anything needs justification. i have found that no matter how strongly i feel about why what i buy is worth what i paid, be it from a quality, aesthetic, hand worked, or other point of view, it is impossible to explain it to someone else. either you appreciate it and are ok with it, or you are not. you learn about it over time and either it appeals to you or it doesnt. either way is fine, but trying to explain/justify one side to the other is a fools errand ime.
     
    1 person likes this.
  18. ezlau

    ezlau Senior member

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    Justification: Ever since buying >$500 shoes, I've been getting twice the amount of ladies.

    Twice the amount of zero is still zero :hide:
     
    2 people like this.
  19. AmericanGent

    AmericanGent Senior member

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    Sadly, we Americans have learned to accept the notion that buying a shoe that cost $5 to make in China by unskilled laborers for about $65-80 is normal. Spending $100 on shoes is absurd to most Americans (unless they are buying Jordans for their kids).

    Consequently, American men buy shoes at DSW for $65 that look like a festering turd, but because the have laces and are made from something that resembles leather they are "dress shoes". After about 10 months, they fall apart so they buy some more like that because they are "not expensive". These are horrible corrected grain, cemented pieces of shit that are a massive waste of money.

    Of course, we know that you can buy a pair of AE for $200-300 and wear them for 10 years. This jump - from the <$100 to $300-400 range is where the real, factual, palatable justification lives. You can sell the reasoning behind this jump to anybody.

    So, the next leap is from the $200-300 range to the $500-900 range (a leap I have only made twice) becomes a little harder to justify by facts.

    The OP asked "How do you justify spending $500+ on shoes? Better put- is there enough of a difference between the $200-300 and $500+ price points to make the purchase justifiable? That depends on a lot of factors. If you buy Louis Vuitton or Ferragmo shoes I think you are paying the additional money for a name, not actual quality- so the justification becomes personal, not measurable in terms of quality.

    I doubt there is an answer to this.

    It really depends on how you dress, your profession, etc. If you buy fantastic bespoke suits and shirts you had better justify some $500+ shoes to go with them. Average shoes will kill a fantastic suit. Fantastic shoes can make an average suit look like a million bucks. ...Ok, maybe not, but it will sure help.

    **EDIT- missing coordinating conjunction.
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013
  20. suited

    suited Senior member

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    $500 is right around the max I've spent on personal shoes. Find me a $150 shoe with quality leather that matches the styling typically found in more expensive shoes and I'll buy it. In fact, I have in the past, although I can't comment on the quality of the leather because I didn't pay attention to those things at the time. I had 2 pairs of Saks brand shoes that were nicely styled and held up pretty well.
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013

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