***The official Alden thread *** Share enthusiasm, reviews, sizing, advice, and photos.

Discussion in 'Streetwear and Denim' started by jet, Nov 3, 2008.

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  1. bucksfan

    bucksfan Senior member

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    I just got those shell captoe boots a month ago. They are great! There are a couple pictures around this forum somewhere.

    As far as sizing, I am a 12D on almost all of AE's lasts as well as other dress shoes. I ordered a 11.5D in these boots and it fits perfectly. I am a 13 in most sneakers. I bet you'll keep the 10.5s
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2011


  2. NotClever

    NotClever Senior member

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    Probably. Width is a little weird on Barrie, though. I'm a 10.5 D in most shoes, including Alden's Aberdeen and Hampton lasts, but a 10 C in Barrie. Have also seen people in here say that they fit their normal length in Barrie but need a width smaller. And some people that use the same width and a half size smaller in length.

    Those two sizes should probably cover you for length, though.
     


  3. applky

    applky Senior member

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    The chocolate suede shortwing is very nice. Hard to tell what lasts these are on, though.

    Also, it appears that there is an 11D color 8 unlined captoe boot for only $435. It does not say cordovan, but looking at shot under the tongue, you can see the tell-tale Horween stamp:

    http://www.yoox.com/item/YOOX/ALDEN/dept/men/tskay/3FD17CD7/rr/1/cod10/44350833PW/sts/sr_men80

    EDIT: People all over this situation.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2011


  4. applky

    applky Senior member

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    Probably. Keep in mind that the double leather sole can make the shoes seem stiff at first, and will cause your heel to slip. Some people think that this means that the sizing is off, but the double leather sole will break in and these issues will go away. As long as your toes don't feel crunched, you want to pay attention to how your shoes feel across the top of your foot and the sides. With boots, I recommend trying them on carpet with medium-thick socks. There is also the Mac break-in method, which you can Google, or ask the man himself.

    With the Barrie, you generally want to be one half size down from your true size (TTS). I don't know sizing of sneaker brands well but one of those should fit well (unless your feet are very wide, in which case you'll need a wider with, which J Crew doesn't stock). Also boots are forgiving.
     


  5. REguy

    REguy Senior member

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    The dark brown suede cap toes and wingtips on Yoox are on the modified last.
     


  6. mcwilson07

    mcwilson07 Member

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    This also appears to work on the Indy Boots right now. Typically they pull them during their sales. Just bought a pair, we'll see if it goes through.
     


  7. seer

    seer Senior member

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    Ok, so recently I was speaking to a shoe guy who has been in the business for thirty plus years. At that point I was not sure whether to start my new shoe collection with AE or Alden (I really did not know a lot about Alden). So I asked him which brand was better – he said there was no comparison – that the Alden was vastly superior – he laid out a number of reasons why. What are your thoughts?
     


  8. captainfunk

    captainfunk Senior member

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  9. the shah

    the shah Persian Bro #2 and enabler-in-chief

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    well what were his reasons ?
     


  10. wj4

    wj4 Senior member

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    It appears both companies appeal to different demographic groups here. The MCers love AE because they're relatively cheap dress shoes compared to their Europe counterparts. The AE crowd also dislike Aldens because of their clunky appeal.

    The more casual crowd like Aldens. I don't think I've seen more than a handful of balmorals posted in this thread. They've all been boots and bluchers.

    I had AEs before when they were on sale at Nordstrom. I thought the quality was OK, but nothing to really write home about. If pricing is of concern, say around $300 for a pair of dress shoes, AE would sound like the sensitive choice though.

    At this point, I'm done with Aldens. I have built a well rounded collection I think. I'm focusing on balmorals and oxfords now.

    Also note that both AE and Alden are not really high end. They're in the middle tier so there are brands out there that will outrank the two aforementioned brands.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2011


  11. seer

    seer Senior member

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    Yes there may be brands out there that are better than AE and Alden but I personally only buy clothing/shoes made in the US. I think Alden is probably the best US made shoe - correct?
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2011


  12. Alcibiades

    Alcibiades Senior member

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    For solid, conservative dress shoes (to be worn 9-5), I would put Allen Edmonds at Alden's level, particularly in calf. Everyone talks about the AE Park Avenue black captoes, for example. For black dress shoes, they probably look sleeker and more appropriate than the similar Alden shoes (in calf or shell). AE has a wide variety of balmorals and "business last" type shoes that go well with suits, especially in calf; if you aren't crazy for cordovan, you may prefer AE for that. Even the AE cordovan shoes tend to be in balmoral styles or sleeker lasts. Honestly if I knew a kid just starting out at a job, I'd send him to AE to buy some captoes before I would send him to Alden (I would recommend he replace his captoes with Church's or C&J when he gets his first bonus then move on to Alden for variety and casual shoes).

    Personally, I wear bluchers and cordovan with suits, so I like a lot of Alden's shoe offerings. People in this thread seem to focus more on rare shells, shell boots, and more casual boots, all of which Alden does much better than AE. Where Alden hits the sweet spot for me is when they do a a rare shell in a business appropriate style - for example, my ravello tassels (which is one of Alden's more business appropriate style) get the most complements out of all of my Aldens because it is in a sleek last in a rare color.

    EDIT - This is a pretty good collection of AE shell

    http://www.styleforum.net/t/268468/...n-alden-shoe-and-boot-thread/165#post_4974095
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2011


  13. Michigan Planner

    Michigan Planner Senior member

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    Regarding AE v Alden - they both have their place and I have some of each in my wardrobe.

    I agree with what others have posted about AE offering slightly sleeker options for a basic dress balmoral or oxford and my walnut colored Strands are still probably my favorite shoes I own. Also, I agree that their prices are generally pretty great for the quality. I've never had any quality issues with my AE shoes and their customer service, both in their local store and on the telephone, has been nothing less than top notch.

    However, when I am looking for something a bit more interesting or in a rare colored shell I look to Alden. IMO, one of the big advantages of Alden are all the special make ups that are available from retailers like LeatherSoul, Unionmade, Context, etc.

    I'm wearing these today and cannot find something similar from Allen Edmonds:
    [​IMG]


    Both are great shoe brands, they just serve different functions.
     


  14. AlanC

    AlanC Minister of Trad

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  15. applky

    applky Senior member

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    They're the big U.S. ones in the price range you're talking about. You should also check out Rider Boots if you're devoted to a U.S.-made product. I personally think they're overpriced and not that special, but some people like them.

    You're really limiting your options if you buy made-in-the-USA only. Most of the best shoe brands right now are European, to say nothing of other types of clothing.

    Also all of Alden's boots are blucher boots. There are no Alden balmoral boots AFAIK. (For full post: well said.)

    I would say this as well, but in the sense of damning with faint praise. I find both AE and Alden calf totally unremarkable and not worth the prices either charge (aside from Chromexcel).

    Agreed. I wear shell bluchers with trousers and suits, as well as with denim and chinos. In some business situations, wingtips are appropriate, and IMO few brands do wingtips as well as Alden.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2011


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