Shoe Damage Report & Shoe P0rn Central - Part II

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Oyaji, Feb 20, 2010.

  1. cwh812

    cwh812 Senior member

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    I'd like to jump into this debate. Rather than seen and handled, I have owned both the Marlow (RL Darlton) and the shell Sandringham. I sold my Marlow's within 3 wears about 1.5-2 years ago as they didn't really fit my style. I bought my Sandringham's recently from Leather Soul. The EG quality is there. It is not in the shell leather which I believe is sourced from the same place - Horween. To focus solely on the leather you dismiss EG's superior finishing, last, shoe trees, etc... The Sandringham's happened to cost me almost 4x the amount of the Marlow's - were they 4x better quality? Heck no. Are they better quality shoes, definitely yes.

    I think it would be unfair to only use shell shoes as a comparison when shell is almost always sourced from the same place and it is hard to really differentiate between. I have owned both the Lowndes and the Westminister. I can say without a doubt the the EG's are far superior to the C&J in every aspect. The quality of calf leather is just not even close.

    I also have owned Lobbs and while I love their colors and designs, their lasts just don't fit my foot as well as EG's.
     


  2. PipersSon

    PipersSon Senior member

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    Thanks, this is very informative. I agree that using only shell is not an appropriate comparison, However I did look at the other (non-cordovan) EG shoes and am not sure why they were regarded as highly as they are.

    I'd like to make it clear that (a) I only handled the shoes and did not actually wear them, (b) I'm not saying EG shoes don't have the quality at that price point; that would be foolish. Only that I do not see that quality at the price point and am willing to learn why others who wear the shoes/ know more than me do so.

    Now, getting back to what is most important to me in this conversation, i.e understanding why the are regarded so highly, you would say far superior leather, finish, shoe trees, the way that they fit you, right?
     


  3. isshinryu101

    isshinryu101 Senior member

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    To hold the C&J Handgrade vs the EG in one's hands there IS a difference. The details are simply done better in the EG. Finer stitching. More consistent finishing. The finer points have been emphasized, and the result is (in my opinion, anyway) a finer overall product. EG is also said to be a more comfortable shoe. I can't say either way because I sold my EG's & my C&J HG's before the 3rd wearing. If you take the majority view (on this site, anyway), the fit & comfort nod probably also goes to the EG.

    That said, I am of the belief that almost all the EG offerings are simply "Vanilla Ice Cream". No chocolate sauce, no whipped cream, no sprinkles, no cherry on top. EXCELLENT Vanilla IC, but simply PLAIN!. From a coupla feet away, the C&J HG looks pretty much exactly like the EG. BOTH brands suffer from this malady, I think. I KNOW my taste is way Over The Top for most here, but the emergence of G&G as the "Most Approved SF Brand" says something about the emergence of "something a little different & special" as the new preference among Fine Shoe Lovers. Even the Saint Crispins I've been seeing lately have been trying to "do their own thing" rather than simply make "Their Version" of a traditional style. Bestetti has his own Porn Thread, and he's working with all kinds of exotic skins & New Takes on classic styles like the Penny Loafer... making them exciting & unique.

    If you want an extra fine version of a plain traditional style, EG is a TOP choice... but if you want something a little different (and at their price point, more & more former customers are moving in different directions), it's best to look elsewhere.


    Side note: EG still has some very interesting takes on boots, and I would still entertain owning a pair of them, as they still are unique in today's marketplace.
     


  4. Jermyn

    Jermyn Senior member

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    Here are my EG purchases from 2011:

    [​IMG]

    I think that the above selection shows how diverse the range of lasts, colours and styles of EG shoes are.

    Purple austerity brogues, blue bucks, olive wholecuts - vanilla ice cream? Really?


    After seeing what has to be the most impressive list of shoe purchases in one year, ever; I decided to compile my own "junior year" list:

    Alfred Sargent (BB) Chelsea Boots Black
    Church’s wingtips Brown
    Church’s brogue boots dainite studded leather sole Brown
    Cleverley Wholecuts Black
    St Crispins wingtips Tan
    Edward green wholecuts Chameleon
    Edward Green Brummel Nightshade
    Edward Green unlined penny loafers Blue Nubuck
    Edward Green (RLPL) Semi Brogue Oxfords Black
    Edward Green Sandhursts Brown
    John Lobb Single Monks Burgundy
    Meermin suede semi brogue Oxfords Chocolate Brown
    Trickers Opera Pumps, unpinched bow, Black calf
    Vass Budapesters Cognac

    And just for fun: avg price per pair of shoes: £230 :slayer: (RLPL EG kopped on B&S, all others bought New)
     


  5. swiego

    swiego Senior member

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    Those look like vanilla ice cream to me: simple, plain shoes, everyday work shoes. Admittedly it's hard to see pizazz due to the lighting in the picture. The shoe trees are lovely.

    My experience mirrored a couple of others; I own some C&J handgrade shoes, and have handled-with-intent-to-purchase EG on several occasions. Each time I found myself backing down, because I could not see a difference. Stitching was similar, leathers were similar, quality of internal finishing of the lining was similar. The sole was maybe a bit cleaner with EG. I did notice that EG seems to be a chunkier, heavier shoe than C&J HG; I don't have enough experience to say that this is true for any but the limited number of shoes I'm familiar with, but they did have this "we're like Alden but for England" feel to them.

    I'd be interested to see some really used EGs. The one posted above ("year old EG still porn!") frankly looks like it's been worn in office environments four or five times. I have soles of new shoes that looked like that after one half an hour walk outdoors. I think "how it held up" gets answered after the first sole replacement.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2012


  6. hendrix

    hendrix Ill-proportioned

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    Or there's the fact that you're paying >$500 for a gemmed shoe. nice details, sure, but at best an imitation of a real, handmade shoe.
     


  7. fritzl

    fritzl Senior member

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    excellent post.
     


  8. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    :cheers:
     


  9. mr monty

    mr monty Senior member

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    We need a NSFW thread for high end shoes. No apology or explanation required, just post some bad ass shoes.
     


  10. dandie

    dandie Senior member

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    It's CJ over EG for me. The hand grade in particular hits the sweet spot of quality, fit, price, and style - particularly in the sleek 358 last. I've tried on the EG's but they don't feel or look any more special, and don't feel as good on my foot.

    A few of my favourites x-posted from the C&J thread...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     


  11. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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  12. Gdot

    Gdot Senior member

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    May I ask who makes a shoe for around $500 US that is not gemmed. (Excluding the blake and blake rapids)

    Or more succinctly, who makes a real, handmade shoe in the $500 US price range?

    :D
     


  13. Son Of Saphir

    Son Of Saphir Senior member

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    Excellent post.
    Perfect post. :slayer:
    E.G have nice design but it look ordinary and nothing special.
    Not real shoe,
    costly imitation. :violin:
    Factory worker shoe.
    Little bit better than well made shoe with glue sole. :nodding:
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2012


  14. Son Of Saphir

    Son Of Saphir Senior member

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    E.G welt stitch very very fine to sole.
    When factory do resole the welt get more and more bad.
    Four resole and welt might be ruin,
    five resole and probably no more.
    Good glue shoe can do 3 resole.
    See.
    Factory not want do new welt,
    private cobbler might but it very very costly and hard to find man to do it.
    Many time goodyear welt shoe little bit better than good glue sole shoe.
    Invent the good glue make gap between goodyear and glue sole construction much more small now.
    See.
     


  15. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    The issue isn't who makes a "real, handmade shoe in the $500.00 US price range", the issue is what is "quality." If you accept that gemmed shoes are quality...the new standard of quality, ta da!...then the question becomes who makes a quality shoe at $400.00? Or $300.00? Or $100.00? Or $49.95? Because surely such a fundamental and critical organizing principle, so widely shared across marketing tiers, makes differences, esp. those that are primarily aesthetic, virtually moot.

    "Handmade" is just a word...and one that can all too easily be confused with quality. But it ain't necessarily so...at any price.

    What it all boils down to is that if you know and understand what comprises quality, and seek it, then price is not an issue. The bespoke shoemaker works (and it is physical work) 40+ hours to make a quality shoe.

    At bottom, you trade your time for his. If that's acceptable then everyone wins. If it's not, then you need to seek a different standard of quality that is.

    If a gemmed shoe is an acceptable level of quality for you, then I can understand your reluctance to pay more...even for more. But frankly, I don't see anything substantive to distinguish the $500.00 shoe from the $400.00 shoe. Und so weiter. And from posts here on SF there are many who agree with that assessment.

    Sure, one particular brand may appeal to your sense of design or your need for association with cachet brands, but don't confuse that with "quality."

    I've said this before and gotten flack for it and will probably again...but I suspect there is far less difference between the $100.00 shoe and the $500.00 shoe as compared to the difference between the gemmed shoe and the handwelted shoe...at any price. In materials, in time, in potential longevity and/or structural integrity.

    Hendrix had it right...and made the salient point...gemmed, at any price, is an imitation.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2012


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