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Pricing/maker of zegna shoes

MikeF

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Today, while grabbing a latte next door from work, I spotted a rather dapper-looking fellow wearing some nice black, matte finish, very low-profile leather cap-toe laceups. I admired them for a bit as I've been looking for cap-toes that aren't ridiculously stodgy - or expensive - for some time now. Anyway, as luck would have it, I spotted the exact same shoes on my way home from work, on sale for CAN$350 (US$265), down from CAN$600 (US$450). It turns out they're Zegna shoes, presumably from a season ago. My question: who makes these shoes, and are they worth US$265? Some information: first of all, the sizing is odd. The shoes that fit me are labelled 9EE. I normally take a 10.5D, possibly an 11D. In Ferragamo, especially, I need at least a 10.5E, or an 11D. Secondly, the sole says "fatte a mano", although nothing about the construction actually suggests that's the case. Thirdly, they're Blake-stitched, I think (no stitching visible on the outsole, inside the shoe, or on the welt). Fourthly: they do not say Napoli Couture - or Z Zegna (I think they pre-date that line). All the insole says is Ermenegildo Zegna. There are "Z" markings on the rubber heel, but again, not "Z Zegna".
 

T4phage

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Originally posted by MikeF:
..... they're Blake-stitched, I think (no stitching visible on the outsole, inside the shoe, or on the welt).
If the stitching is not visible inside, then I would suggest that they are not blake stitched. Unless of course they have a full length sockliner which would hide them.
 

naturlaut

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Originally posted by MikeF:
Quote:
..... they're Blake-stitched, I think (no stitching visible on the outsole, inside the shoe, or on the welt).
If the stitching is not visible inside, then I would suggest that they are not blake stitched. Â Unless of course they have a full length sockliner which would hide them.
You could still feel the stitches through the sock liner.
 

jcusey

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You could still feel the stitches through the sock liner.
You should also be able to tell by the placement of the channel on the sole (yes, it's covered, but you can still usually see an indentation where it is).
 

RIDER

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It really could be anyone - different factories in Italy with different strengths make for many, many labels. Even the branded companies share the work among each other many times. I don't know much about the newer Zegna shoes, i.e. the Ferragamo connection (and I didn't think that Ferragamo made most of it's own shoes anyway), but in the past, a factory named Pino Giardino made shoes for Zegna's brand. They are well thought of in the industry as far as quality is concerned. Also, a factory (and family) named Speroni makes for a few clothing labels - the big names. Don't know about Zegna though. They also produce a very nice range of shoes.

One thing I do know, any of the shoes that carry a clothing label's brand are going to be overpriced. You can come with me to Italy in September, we'll buy the same shoes, sell them for half the 'branded' price, and do just fine, thank you very much. Of course, 'Mike and Ron's Good Italian Shoes' probably won't get the same attention as Zegna, or Canali or Brioni, huh? That's the value of the brand name, and that's what you pay so much for. It seems as though the people on these forums are smart enough to know this, and that's good, as so much stuff is overpriced with a 'label' on it.

Edit - I just re-read your post and saw the price quoted; it would'nt surprise me to see Zegna put there name on a cemented shoe. And try to sell it for $400 +.
 

jcusey

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Edit - I just re-read your post and saw the price quoted; it would'nt surprise me to see Zegna put there name on a cemented shoe. And try to sell it for $400 +.
Obviously, I couldn't say without seeing the shoe in question, and I would certainly not put it past Zegna or others to put an outrageous price tag on an inferior product. That being said, the Zegna-labelled shoes that I've seen recently have been either Blake constructed or Goodyear-welted. Not bad, not worth the retail price, but not bad for $265.
 

MikeF

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Further to my original post, here are some photos of the shoes.
After closer inspection, I'm thinking I'll return them, but I'm interested in comments and observations, particularly as to the manufacturer, the quality and the value.
 

RIDER

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They appear to have been made by the same factory that made Ferragamo Studio shoes. Are they cemented? Look to be. Anyway, I know the picture is not sharp, but the leather looks horrible, unfortunately. Look at the right shoe - the quarters are all baggy. Shoe didn't spend much time on the last. The break tells the story of the leather - is your right foot your bigger foot?
 

johnnynorman3

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I would return them. I agree that you could do MUCH better for $265. Once you get into that rarified price category, why not spend just a little bit more and get the Mantellassis on Yoox?
 

MikeF

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The fact that the Zegnas are a rip doesn't make the Mantellassis any better priced - $300 seems pricey for the stuff I see on Yoox. (I've picked up very similar Mantellassis for $110 before.)
 

MikeF

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The break tells the story of the leather - is your right foot your bigger foot?
Yes, my right foot is my bigger foot - but you can't possibly tell that from the pictures, since I've never even tried on the left shoe.

Also: as regards the leather, it seems to have an intentional matte finish.

What do you make of the "fatte a mano" nonsense?
 

johnnynorman3

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The fact that the Zegnas are a rip doesn't make the Mantellassis any better priced - $300 seems pricey for the stuff I see on Yoox. Â (I've picked up very similar Mantellassis for $110 before.)
Touche. But the point I was trying to make is that the Mantellassis I've seen on Yoox are a better value than the Zegnas, regardless of whether you've seen Mantellassis for $110 (where the hell was that? I wish I lived next to that store&#33
. Perhaps we were thrown off by the matte finish. I just am not a huge fan of the matte finish. It just kills the look of the leather in my opinion, and it doesn't age well. Perhaps in a shoe with jeans it is okay, but then $265 seems like a lot to me for that type of shoe.
 

MikeF

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I agree - the matte finish is, for the most part, wierd. The only purpose for which I like it is wear with a true navy suit - shiny black looks terribly with a rich navy blue.
 

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