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Stephane Jimenez Bespoke Shoes

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by mw313, Apr 2, 2016.

  1. LA Guy

    LA Guy Opposite Santa Staff Member Admin Moderator

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    Shoes are a functional artifact, buit that's where my agreement with you ends. A pair of country boots serve a very different purpose than a pair of ballet pumps. Different shoes are meant for very different purposes. Comparisons about "quality" can only be made within a very narrow spectrum. And even then, we quickly run into bugbears like "quality/price ratios" and the question of diminishing functional returns.

    As for discussions of aesthetic preferences, that is where, imo, the conversation gets very interesting. This is what distinguishes good designers (in the broad sense) from poor. There is no "objective" argument to be had, which is not to say that "impartial" discussions cannot be had. i.e. you can appreciate an aesthetic that is completely contrary to what you yourself prefer - as an example, I love tough, durable, zombie apocalypse ready clothing, but appreciate fine embroidering and lacework, which would slow down zombies not one bite.
     
    1 person likes this.
  2. Steven Cash

    Steven Cash Senior member

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    Like I said I respect your experience and opinions and always take them on board. No criticism towards any member has ever come from my direction - I know my place.

    I did however, take your statement to imply that you felt it was pretentious to own a $2k pair of shoes whilst possessing no understanding of the design or manufacture or indeed wanting to learn about the same. This was the only issue I took as I'm sure the average customer of any top end brand could not make the item themselves (or even understand how they work) and if they only sold products to those who could then there would be very few artisans left.

    To use the car analogy again you used the example of believing the Ferrari mechanic but surely this is the same as believing the Ferrari salesman and buying a car for pretentious reasons an one up-manship - which may sometimes be the case.

    I suppose the crux of the matter is I have bought shoes in this price bracket whilst possessing zero knowledge on the subject but I didn't feel unqualified to do so and I do not feel pretentious in wearing them much the same as any other items I own.

    I have no knowledge of engine building or watchmaking either but I receive an awful amount of pleasure in owning and using them.
     
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  3. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    Pleasure and pretense are not mutually exclusive.

    What is the motivation for paying four times as much for a pair of shoes as for another that fulfill the same function? If not that you understand the details and differences well enough to appreciate the differences?

    What is even the motivation for seeking out the $2k pair of shoes as opposed to the $500.00 pair of shoes unless you understand the details and differences?

    Read this forum...nine times out of ten it's the box. And SF is hardly a reflection of society at large.

    From there it's just a matter of degree. Those who seek better often try to learn more in order to increase their appreciatiation and pleasure...and to justify their continuing interest. But not always. For some it's just too much trouble and they'd rather depend on the recommendations, and the work, focus and experience, of others who are motivated by details such as techniques and objective quality. How many times do we hear "what should I get?" when the real question being asked is "what should I like?"

    What makes pretense distasteful...in my personal opinion...is that there is a failure to be honest with one's own self nevermind everybody else. And that leads to disrespect and confrontation.

    Example...because I have Scottish ancestry, I sometimes wear a kilt. And take great pleasure in it. In the sense that I am not a Scottish national, it is a pretense. But the saving grace is that I know that, I openly admit it and I wear the kilt with respect and deference...esp. for people who are Scottish.

    And no, the Ferrari salesman is the last person you should listen to if you really want to understand and appreciate.

    --
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2016
    1 person likes this.
  4. Petepan

    Petepan Senior member

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    Mate, stop carrying on like the Queen.

    There is an information asymmetry, and people sometimes foolishly use price as a proxy for quality. Purveyors of women luxury goods have acted on this for ages.

    What exactly is so perplexing that you feel compelled to carry on and on about this issue?
     
  5. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    Rub the sleep out of your eyes...my last post in this thread, before Steven Cash quoted me and engaged me, was three weeks ago. Since then I've just been responding.
     
  6. Steven Cash

    Steven Cash Senior member

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    I wholeheartedly agree.

    I was sucked in along with everybody else for the "fancy boxes" as you put it but luckily I learnt fairly early on in my journey that all that glitters is not gold - despite what other people may say.

    I picked the shoes I own based on the general aesthetic which pleased me most at the time (and still do) however, I now see that my money would have been better spent elsewhere (HW as opposed to GYW) but without going though bespoke the very sleek lasts which were my preference earlier on are seldom seen in HW RTW so it is a matter of priorities.

    It is mostly as a result of your helpful posts that I have arrived at this conclusion and I genuinely thank you for it. Unfortunately it was only as a result of owning my first few pairs that I discovered Styleforum and decided to try and better understand the work rather than the finished article.

    The shoes contained in this thread (which from what you have seen/read I assume you will concede are well made?) are unfortunately way above my budget so rather than own one pair of top end bespoke I would rather own a good rotation of HW RTW shoes (which I am slowly starting to amass).

    I think admitting your failures (ignorance) is the opposite of pretentious and I can (and do) appreciate many things without understanding them.
     
  7. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    I couldn't agree more.

    It just goes back to the the reason I originally commented at all in this thread (three weeks ago) and that I reiterated in my response to you last night (post #97).

    And thanks for the kind words.

    edited for punctuation and clarity
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2016
  8. mw313

    mw313 Senior member

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    Thank you all for being much more civil thanks in the early parts of this thread as well as I've seen in a few threads on the more technical parts of shoe making. It is much better for us all to express our opinions and know that even when others do not agree they can still respect those opinions.

    This is just like the subjectivity on the aesthetics of fine footwear. Many shoes can objectively be measured for build quality bit the aesthetics are definitely subjective and even if a style is not your "cup of tea" one can still appreciate the work and innovation out into making that style at times.
     
  9. Manuel

    Manuel Active Member

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    What a wonderful threat! Now...I'd like to clarifi some things......but I read 300 messages and my eyes hurt.
     

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