Thank you for sharing your experience and reviewFirst off, let me begin my saying Rezso is an absolute pleasure to work with. We went through all the details, and he kept me updated throughout the whole process. Which I really appreciate as mostly every other brand or business keeps you in the dark. This kind of service can not be applauded enough.
Onto the impressions.
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The shoe box is very impressive. Thick and sturdy with a solid feel. Think EG shoe box, but a slicker hand feel.
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The shoe bags less impressive. I was expecting some sort of nylon type material, like Vass does. These are thinner and more basic. Honestly though, if you base your purchase decision on bags a reassessment may be necessary. In any case, thought I would mention it for inquiring minds.
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Shoe trees are standard block, so not hollowed or lasted. They fit the shoes really well so no real reason to upgrade them for lasted ones, especially since these were included in the price.
Rezso often gets asked about Vass F last comparisons. He recommends keeping the same size, and I would agree with that.
Considering the similarity is sizing, I figured it was only fitting to snap a few photos alongside the F-Last.
Fortunately, I had a Vass shoe with a double sole to make it a more appropriate & truer comparison.
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The Passus is really really similar to the F last. The differences are a better fit around the waist. In my case, it is tight but I appreciate that. The heel fits about the same as the Vass.
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I would say the 1000 last (the last my shoe is based on) provides better width across the toes. You can see where the F tapers more on the toebox. Thus, those who find the F last restrictive in the toe box will enjoy the extra wiggle room here.
Instep is about the same, with the 1000 last possibly providing a mm or so of extra clearance.
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The heel block is higher on the F last and heel tapers more. I prefer this about the Vass over the Passus. Saying that, both heels feel the same on the foot, as mentioned earlier.
The overall feel is similar to Vass, but structurally (meaning support) is like StC. Interestingly enough, the weight of the shoe is similar to StC, so considerably ligther than Vass. Consequently, you get the extra support without the weight. Nice job!
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The Sole is a topy from a German company. The pattern is different from what you typically find. Rezso tells me it is highly durable. The nail configuration you see on the heel was supposed to be the same on the toe tip. Passus dropped the ball here. Obviously, no effect on the shoe itself nor is it visible, but missed detail.
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The toe caps are straight which is a plus, but as you can see here the stitching is not perfect. On the left shoe, the stitch line almost comes together. Again, not a big deal and to be expected when you have bigger workshops to have these things happen.
There was a similar stitch issue on the back heel, but it feels superfluous to demonstrate with pictures a miniscule error.
As it pertains to finishing. I'll revert back to the Vass comparison.
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As you can see, the Passus shoe is better finished. The waist is more beveled. The toe more refined, although from the overhead shot the Vass toe looks more tapered. From this side view, you can clearly see the Passus shoe has more "shape" to the toe. The dbl sole to single sole is performed cleaner on the Passus.
As mentioned, I prefer the heel and heel block on the Vass shoe. Saying that for the purposes of a casual shoe, the Passus heel works for me.
The welts are nicely executed and clean.
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In terms of customer service, Passus, generally, and Rezso, specifically, are leaps and bounds over most brands. You ask for something, they try their best to accommodate you. Hard to find an equal in this category. Easily the Gold standard.
I would say I am extremely pleased with my purchase. Other than a little nit picking here and there, just about a perfect experience.
If you want a shoe that's slightly better than Vass, but slightly lower priced than StC...This would be it. Think of it as Vass+ w/StC engineering but Bespoke Cutomer Service .