Poll: Pick a Business Black Cap Toe

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by nytek, Nov 22, 2009.

  1. nytek

    nytek Well-Known Member

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    After looking at all the brown shoes in my closet, I've come to realize that I need a nice black cap toe. I know the prevalent thinking around here is to not spend too much on black shoes, but if these will be my primary shoes for interviews and such, I don't mind spending the money. So here are the choices that I'm trying to narrow down from: 1) C&J Handgrade Audley - Stitched Captoe on the 337 Last [​IMG] 2) C&J Handgrade Belgrave - Same exact shoes as the Audley, just the punched cap toes; are these still okay with a suit? [​IMG] 3) C&J Benchgrade Hallam - a little sleeker 348 last and slightly cheaper (couldn't find a good picture of the black ones) [​IMG] 4) Loake Aldwych - Go much cheaper, since it is black [​IMG] Just for your reference, the other shoes I own: C&J Weymouth in Brown AE Byron in Chestnut Ferragamo Stefano Loafers in Dark Brown Ferragamo Blucher Cap toes in Black - these are the one's I'm trying to replace
     


  2. SkinnyGoomba

    SkinnyGoomba Senior member

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    1st one, unless you wear very sleek, slim cut suits.
     


  3. ramuman

    ramuman Senior member

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    1st one, unless you wear very sleek, slim cut suits.

    Agreed. For some reason in black I like non-punched cap toes and in brown the other way. Also, a handgrade on the 337 will last you through a eon.
     


  4. JohnnyCrockett

    JohnnyCrockett Senior member

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    1. The choice between the first 2 and number 3 is all about last. I think both of these C&J lasts are particularly "snouty" in a captoe (though I love the 348 for the Tetbury), but the 337 is less snouty, so that narrows us down to the Belgrave or the Audley.

    2. I always prefer a punch cap to a plain cap. So I say go Belgrave. Ralph Lauren sold this shoe as the Benton a few years ago -- you may be able to find the model on deep discount online, depending on your size.

    Your photo of the Loake is broken.
     


  5. NewYorkIslander

    NewYorkIslander Affiliate Vendor

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    I have the Audley and its perhaps the most comfortable shoe I own...
     


  6. Rusty G.

    Rusty G. Senior member

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    The bottom picture doesn't come out. . .But, out of the top three photos, I think any of them would be great with a suit. . .As to last shape, I think it just depends upon what you like best.

    The fact that the Audley has a punched line around the Cap Toe shouldn't matter as to whether or not you would wear the shoe with a suit.
     


  7. ManofKent

    ManofKent Senior member

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    I like all of them, I wouldn't worry about the punching - all will be fine with a suit. Personally I went with EG Chelseas for the odd times I wear them.
     


  8. MyOtherLife

    MyOtherLife Senior member

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    Of these choices, My first pick is Belgrave, with Hallam a close second.
     


  9. Bird's One View

    Bird's One View Senior member

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    These all look similar enough (aside from the punch cap vs. stitch cap issue) that I'd suggest going with whichever fits the best. I don't have any Loakes so I don't know how much (if any) you'll suffer for their relative cheapness.

    If I needed more black shoes I'd probably get Alden 907 (or 901).
     


  10. pg600rr

    pg600rr Senior member

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    what site did you get the pics from?
     


  11. upnorth

    upnorth Senior member

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    Agreed. For some reason in black I like non-punched cap toes and in brown the other way.

    I agree with this completely. In fact, looking at my own collection, I do not have any brogueing on all my black shoes at all. Plain monk, plain 2 eyelet blucher, plain captoe.

    And apart from a brown plain captoe and a Beaulieu like austere wingtip, the rest of my brown shoes all have brogueings.

    I personally would prefer not to spend too much on a pair of black captoe, as the quality and finishing of brown leather is more apparent in expensive shoes, and that is where I prefer to put my money. Even an EG black chelsea in 202 looks uninspiring to me personally, no matter how correct it is for the occasion. However, if the job requires you to be in business suits most of the time, then perhaps an investment in a good pair of black captoe is essential, in which case, I would suggest going for the Audley.

    Another way to thinking this is simply to purge the idea of a black captoe in future by investing in a really good pair now, getting the notion out of your system and concentrating on other shoes from that point forward.
     


  12. furo

    furo Senior member

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    If pricing is similar, why not go with the highest quality
     


  13. JohnnyCrockett

    JohnnyCrockett Senior member

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    Another way to thinking this is simply to purge the idea of a black captoe in future by investing in a really good pair now, getting the notion out of your system and concentrating on other shoes from that point forward.


    Call me old fashioned, but as someone who works in an urban business setting, I think it is indisputable that one needs to wear black oxfords for business with suits. No brown in town applies just as much in midtown Manhattan as it does in the City of London. You see people in brown and burgundy, but if you're in the offices of the finance, consulting, and law firms, you wonder who all those people on the street are (maybe hedge fund people who only attend internal meetings?) because when business is done, people do it wearing black shoes.
     


  14. nytek

    nytek Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for all the replies. Seems to be a pretty close vote all around, so it doesn't make things much easier.

    To address some of the questions brought up:

    -I do wear slim suits, as I am a 36R with an athletic build. I think the Audley can still work with that
    -Seems to be between Audley and Belgrave for most with same saying the punch cap doesn't matter, and some saying it does. Just to be safe, I'm leaning towards the Audley. But as I said, the current Ferragamo bluchers that I have are stiched captoe, so was looking for some variety
    -As for where I got the pictures, did a google image search and took the best ones
    -Why not go for best quality/highest price if I have the money? Only because I'm curious as to whether I should save that for brown shoes rather than black; my budget is not unlimited
    -To JohnnyCrockett, I wouldn't go that far and say that business is not done in black shoes. But I wouldn't want to take chances for an interview or same major event, and have brown shoes standing out
     


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