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I dislike captoes: sell me on them

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by usctrojans31, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. scurvyfreedman

    scurvyfreedman Senior member

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    Personally, I don't like plain captoes. I do like adelaides - either semi brogues or austerity brogue adelaides. The U throat just does something for me. I do have a plain captoe balmoral boot, but it's with a suede shaft, so it's not exactly boring. I also have a captoe in black, but it's a quarter brogue or punch cap, so it's not totally plain.

    Everyone likes something different. That's why there are so many choices in shoes.
     
  2. FlyingMonkey

    FlyingMonkey Senior member

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    Okay, to move away from the silly comments, I'd like to discuss an actual issue with captoes.

    I love the way captoes look. But they don't love me.

    The problem I am having is tha captoes don't seem to work with the particular form of my feet. I think this has to do with the combination of size and design norms. I have small feet (6.5UK / 7.5 US), and even the really high quality captoes I have worn (most recently Bruno Magli Platinum) end up with a very short vamp which seems to create a kind of compression zone between the base of the eyelet tab and the toe cap, which in one way or another crushes the top of my feet as I walk, which is really, really painful and does not seem to get better with wear. It might be better with a shorter cap, but I haven't found a shoe that has this and still looks good. I don't have this problem with any other type of shoe, including brogues, which do have a toe cap but one that is more sharply indented on both sides rather than running straight across the foot and is usually less 'stiff'. And no, I haven't tried bespoke makers yet, although I feel that the risk involved in having a shoe made that will still hurt my feet is probably too great in financial terms, although at some point I may give it a go. In the meantime, I don't think I can wear captoes.

    I would like to hear from any shoemakers on the forum about this particular issue and whether my intuition about what is going on is correct.
     
  3. pkiula

    pkiula Senior member

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    You've got to be kidding if you think a medallion shoe in a job interview is fine. That's just plain ignorant. Your shoes may not get noticed if you wear cap toes. If you wear a medallion, you absolutely will get noticed. Most classic big company interviewers (yours truly being one) know how to look at a person's dressing, it's in the guidelines. If they color within the lines, then it doesn't matter and the substance of the conversation is more important. If the candidate is out of the ordinary -- like a medallion or a heavily brogued shoe -- then it's a red flag.

    Some of this depends on your seniority.

    The more senior you are in your line of work, the more the freedom you have to 'stand out' and be yourself. As a CEO you could wear a grasshopper green tie with pink socks and people will think you to have a personal sense of style. As a young intern interviewing, not so much.

    For younger people, a basic black or very dark brown cap toe is good. The whole point is to NOT make a point with the shoes. If they really really want to show individuality in the feet area, I'd suggest a slightly bright version of socks -- blue with green stripes for example, instead of the usual black or dark blue. But not pink or bright orange.

    Net net: a cap toe is a classic business shoe. Don't like it much? Get a pair that drip class in other ways, such as the overall shaping or soles -- like Vass or Carmina or some high end Santonis, or Magnannis for the younger crowd who don't want it to cost an arm and a leg. Medallion or split toes or brogued wingtips etc are good only for more casual (or smart casual) business environments.
     
  4. pkiula

    pkiula Senior member

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    Those are small feet. Get a proper shoe like Vass or Santoni, with a more pointed front, but not overly pointy like some lower-end brands. Their sense of proportion will keep you in good stead. I presume you're not 6 foot tall with those small feet, your overall body proportion should be fine, so stop thinking that the shoes should protrude out from under your trousers to a great length. People who see you will see good quality, well shaped shoes in the proportion of the rest of you.
     
  5. FlyingMonkey

    FlyingMonkey Senior member

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    I think you missed my point. It wasn't anything to do with the aesthetics of the length of the shoe or how far they protrude from the trousers and I don't where you got that idea from. It was to do with construction and whether my experience of compression in the vamp this was likely to be a general problem with captoes in smaller sizes. I was hoping to hear from someone who actually knew about shoe construction, but this may not be the most appropriate thread.
     
  6. Coburn

    Coburn Senior member

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    I think the seam of the cap toe provides a pivot for the toe of the shoe to bend around. So, a cap toe shoe will accumulate fewer lines or creases in the leather relative to a smooth toe or a whole cut.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. pkiula

    pkiula Senior member

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    Apologies for misunderstanding your intent. It became clearer over the course of the thread; your original post and the title of this thread didn't seem very clear.

    I know just a little about construction, so maybe more educated members can comment more. But from your comment about having small feet and therefore captoes not being ideal for you, well there's no link. Young men in Korea or Japan are among the most stylish in the world, and yet they can rock small-size captoes just fine. It's a simple shoe, but with some nice touches like a well-shaped last, some subtle antiquing, etc, it can be both unique and comfortable.

    Which shoes do you wear? Bruno Magli is not really a great shoe in my book, even if they have a "Platinum" or Diamond line.
     
  8. comrade

    comrade Senior member

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    In addition to captoes, I dislike wholecuts.
     
  9. guayabera

    guayabera Member

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    I... did not expect to see Gian-Carlo Rota name-checked on SF, much less that particular classroom quote. This made my day.

    OP: Other people's opinions only matter regarding things you would wear.
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2013

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