- Jul 2, 2015
- Reaction score
Shell is not stretchy. In the same size/model, I have found shell versions to be slightly looser [not tighter] than other leathers. This experience is also the general, conventional wisdom among most other forumites from my reading and is reportedly because it is difficult to as tightly pull the shell over the last relative to other leathers. The difference is usually not enough to change sizes unless you are a borderline size to begin with.I agree. It does stretch, but very minimal from my experience.
The experience described up-thread is more likely slight pair to pair variation, or perhaps inexperience with the stiffness of new shell uppers vs. suede/calf.
As for stretching shell -- as @JSO1 indicated shell can be stretched. I've done it with a pair of C&J loafers purposely using large shoe trees. Is it advisable? Probably not. But it can be done with care and my pair are probably a 1/4 size larger now with a little more room at the instep and ball.
As an aside, there are some calf leathers that I have found to be not really at all prone to stretching. For example, I have an old pair of Rider Dundalks in the reverso leather that was very popular years ago. Not prone to stretching in my experience. Just a pair that is top of mind at the moment. I am sure they could be forced to stretch but I don't see them as significantly more prone to stretch than cordovan.