Painted/Patina leather shoes — How do they age?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by qubed, Jun 8, 2012.

  1. qubed

    qubed Well-Known Member

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    Pierre Corthay, Septieme Largeur, et al can make shoes with a painted patina. Anyone have any experience with how these shoes age? I assume a colored polish is out of the question. What about scuffs; is there any way to get those out?

    Before I drop a large chunk of money on shoes like this, I'd like to be confident that they'll last a very long time.
     
  2. well-kept

    well-kept Senior member

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    Whether they'll last a long time, and what they may look like after a few years are two different questions.

    The longevity is determined by the quality of construction.

    'Real' patina will be the result of wear, care, environment and time. No matter how they start out they will change and continue changing. My vote is for an untampered-with surface that you can make your own. It will, in the end, look better and you will have the satisfaction of knowing it is a reflection of the life you've lived, not someone's artistry.

    Think of it as the difference between a 200-year-old piece of mahogany furniture and a new piece that someone has 'aged' and 'distressed'. Ain't nothin' like the real thing.

    BTW, some months ago I fell into conversation with a very nice man who introduced himself as the manager of the Madison Avenue Berluti shop. From time to time he glanced down at my feet, finally asking what i was wearing. "Thirty year old Lobbs" was my answer. His expression said volumes.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2012
  3. qubed

    qubed Well-Known Member

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    I understand that, but these shoes aren't creating an "aged & distressed" look, but rather a look that's unachievable either through tanning/dyeing or through general wear.

    To me it's like buying a piece of furniture that's painted bright red. No amount of awesome Mahogany or age is going to turn my furniture bright red. Both have their places, but are very different.
     
  4. well-kept

    well-kept Senior member

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    My apologies. Are you referring to something akin to those models that are blue-green at the toe, passing through pale cream to a red orange at the heel counter, or any variation on that theme? Some of them do look beautiful. No clue as to whether the effect is permanent. My guess is that the leather will want to return to its original state and over time will struggle to do so.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2012
  5. qubed

    qubed Well-Known Member

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    Yes, exactly (well, some variation thereof). They're beautiful, though my fear is that it won't last very long.
     
  6. Gdot

    Gdot Senior member

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    It depends on how they are patinated. If done with dyes the effect will last a very long time.

    Berluti will strip and refinish your shoes in the shop and there are 'patinators' in France that will do any pair of shoes for about $150 US.

    Once dyed the effect will last quite a long while. Depending on how you care for the them the patina can remain fairly constant or additional patina can be created through colored creams and polishes over the years.
     
  7. qubed

    qubed Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Gdot, I feel much less apprehensive now.
     

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