St. Crispin's Appreciation Thread

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by medtech_expat, Jul 22, 2011.

  1. PCK1

    PCK1 Senior member

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    people at Leffot told me that StC had numerous issues with the shrunken calf...

    ...thats enough for me to stay away from it...
     


  2. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    Shrunken leather has a pretty notable texture created during the "shrinking"/tumbling process.

    When such a leather is dyed black it is, more often than not, simply dyed black with an aniline dye that penetrates relatively deeply into the leather. A wax finish coat may be added but an opaque top coat is rarely needed.

    But when a heavily textured leather is dyed brown, or some variation of brown, it is often dyed with two colours--a lighter colour as a base...often in the form of a penetrating aniline dye; and a darker finish coat which is rolled over the surface to dye the high spots. This creates a two-tone effect which is attractive to some. The two dyes and the way they penetrate and/or adhere to the leather are significantly different. One is solvent based and penetrates, the other is essentially a paint job that sits only on the surface.

    The point is that, IIRC, SoGent's shoes are black. It would be unusual for spotting to occur or be visible on black leather.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2014


  3. SoGent

    SoGent Senior member

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    your explanation of the dye for dark brown makes perfect sense DW and just may be the reason for the
    spotting on the offending chukka posted earlier this year. If the second step of dye job were faulty, I would
    consider it to be a massive screw up if a few drops of rain were literally able to wash away that top
    coat. The use of a super dry hide which didn't accept the dyes well or water droplets from a water /
    chemical mix used for melting snow or ice is another story entirely and are plausible possibilities. I just don't
    think a single instance problem is enough 'proof' to be used for the creation of an urban myth and wholesale
    discounting of the material or maker.

    One of my boots of this leather is an exact color duplicate of the chukka pictured on this forum which is their
    609 dark brown and is +/- 1 year old. The second is St C's 604 color which is what I would call a lighter
    cognac brown, leaning more toward tan +/- 2 years old. While both have been exposed to rain drops . . . .
    neither of them has exhibited the dissolving of the top coat or finish. In my estimation either I'm lucky or the
    one customer was the opposite. If the latter is the case with the chukka, I firmly believe that St Crispins would
    have corrected the problem even to the extent of remaking the shoe if that's what it took. I've had that
    experience with them as well.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2014


  4. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    I have no issue with St. Crispin (and make it a personal policy to not criticize the maker, in any event), my point is simply to offer some insight how this could have been a problem with the tannery/currier and the leather.

    As I suggested in a previous post, it could even be as simple as an issue of dye lots. From what I've read and heard, talking to people like Marcel Mrsan, most of the Eastern European makers use and even prefer locally produced tools and materials...probably because the cost is less.

    AFAIK...and I'm speculating...shrunken calf (sometimes marketed as "Bullhide") and shrunken buffalo are relatively recent offerings in EE. The tanneries may not know how to do it very well. Or maybe it simply took a while to get the "bugs" worked out. Or maybe the company they were buying their dyes from changed the formula.

    We see this a lot in another, related context--if you need three, possibly four, hides in a particular colour to make a boot, the best advice is to buy five. Because you cannot count on getting a matching hide...even a week later...if you come up short.

    But bottom line, I've seen worse and more surprising. It isn't necessarily StC's fault, but it isn't necessarily spurious either.

    I admire St. Crispin--I think they do great work at a decent (affordable) price point. But on some level, while you're debating who to believe, you have to ask yourself if the information coming from a company with a vested interest, is ever going be anymore reliable than the "grapevine"...with no vested interest. That's just a general observation and not aimed at STc specifically.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2014


  5. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I'm going to Leffot in a little bit. We will finally settle how many testicles I have, forsooth.
     


  6. SoGent

    SoGent Senior member

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    Don't do it on my account mr. Booth
    I already know leffot isn't the center on the universe
     


  7. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Pull your head out of the sand, man.
     


  8. jerrybrowne

    jerrybrowne Senior member

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    What did they say?
     


  9. MoosicPa

    MoosicPa Senior member

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    Hating to change the topic from Patrick's testes, but Leathersoul is having a St. Crispin's sample sale... if you're lucky they may have your size at 1/2 off. :D
     


  10. wurger

    wurger Senior member

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    nothing in my size!
     


  11. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I actually didn't bring it up as I don't really care, but in the past they said clients have had issues. It's asinine that some chose to not believe this because they didn't see it with their own eyes. Why would a retailer say that? If that's not some sort of denial, than I don't know what is.
     


  12. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Oh, and it is still undetermined how many testicles I have. The prognosis was pretty much the same as the shrunken calf however: "It's not so much the color that's the issue, but rather the abnormal amount of shrinkage."
     


  13. jerrybrowne

    jerrybrowne Senior member

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    Actually, this is what I was asking about. :devil:
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2014


  14. chobochobo

    chobochobo Rubber Chicken Dubiously Honored Moderator

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    Mine have arrived at Leathersoul. Hope they don't have the 'problem'...:)

    [​IMG]
     


  15. chogall

    chogall Senior member

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    Who the hell is the best contact for LSBH customers now Shane and Bryant left?
     


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