***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. 100 yrs

    100 yrs Senior member

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    Oct 12, 2010
    A Blues Igloo

    AoC helps J Gilbert develop their make-ups, and I believe used to help Blackbird before they stopped carrying interesting things. I have found that the AoC website keeps decent track of what's in stock at J. Gilbert

    for the guy visiting seattle, butch blum usually carries an Alden style or two, but nothing like J. Gilbert.

  2. tsekh

    tsekh Senior member

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    Apr 26, 2011

    Damn. It seems that most of the interesting Plaza lasted boots at J Gilbert's are not in stock in my size and won't be until August/September.

  3. Alcibiades

    Alcibiades Senior member

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    Mar 31, 2009
    New Yawk
    Its an LHS kind of day... Wearing the cigar LHS sockless on a sunny Saturday

  4. TactileOne

    TactileOne Senior member

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    Mar 22, 2013
    Atlanta area
    High praises. Years ago before I knew better I had a pair of Alden snuff suede LHS resoled at what was supposed to be a good cobbler in Atlanta. They bucthered my shoes, removed the cork replaced it with a piece of felt, awful soles and left edge dressing on the suede.

    I've recently found a great cobbler in the Atlanta area and I'm recommending him to anyone looking for good quality work. He resoled my LHSs with quality JR soles and heels using brass nails, replaced the missing heel pads and cleaned up the suede. I've no idea what the cost was, he's just started smoking a pipe and I bartered him one of my Castellos.

    As I said, if your looking for quality work in the Atlanta area you can find it at Village Shoe Service in Tucker. Here's a link to a pic of my shoes from his facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?...6041021.101073.165782983433631&type=1&theater

  5. blue collar

    blue collar Senior member

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    Jul 28, 2010

    Is there another way to wear the LHS? ;)
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2013

  6. apo1

    apo1 Member

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    Feb 19, 2013
    Nice job did

  7. TactileOne

    TactileOne Senior member

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    Mar 22, 2013
    Atlanta area
    Snuff suede LHS sockless on a warm Atlanta afternoon.

  8. BeSpiffington

    BeSpiffington Senior member

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    Jan 16, 2013
    The classiest of gentlemen wear the cigar lhs on Saturdays.

  9. lagsun

    lagsun Senior member

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    Nov 24, 2008
    SF Bay Area

  10. kwhitelaw

    kwhitelaw Senior member

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    Nov 15, 2011
    afternoon gents,

    got stuck with light water droplets on my cigar chukkas today.. I thought I'd applied some Defender to them, but I guess not as I am seeing some very faint, small dark spots...

    what's the consensus.. brush the hell out of them? little renovateur?

  11. Numbernine

    Numbernine Senior member

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    Jan 12, 2013
    Where the palm tree meets the pine
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2013

  12. kwhitelaw

    kwhitelaw Senior member

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    Nov 15, 2011
    hmm, wouldnt have thought that spritzing water would help to remove water spots [​IMG]

    I'm down to try anything though [​IMG]


  13. borderline

    borderline Senior member

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    Feb 8, 2008
    SW U.S.A.
    It's been awhile since I posted this. I added some things since the last time. If you have any additions or recommendations, send the info in a PM for a future version.


    Compiled by borderline using the combined wisdom of "The Official Alden Thread" on Styleforum and other web sources.

    Before Buying

    What are the different lasts and how do they fit relative to one another?
    *See below for more sizing information

    What do the different cordovan colors look like?

    I feel like I'm buying too many Aldens, what can I do?
    1) Give up, there is no hope.
    2) Stop reading this thread

    Why do they call it the Indy boot?

    Are Alden shoes worth the price?
    At the end of the day, the main benefits to Alden shoes are
    1) High quality Horween leathers (Chromexcel, cordovan, and I assume suede) in unique colors
    2) Willingness to work with retailers (many of whom work with customers) to develop special styles
    3) Variety of well-fitting lasts
    4) Recraft-ability (not necessarily by Alden, but by a variety of cobblers)
    5) Decent price point compared to shoemakers that work with similar materials
    6) Traditional aesthetic (high quality and stylish in a "handsome," "gentlemanly" way)
    7) Alden shoes are pretty comfortable, can be very eye catching (cordovan, suede, etc tend to get tons of compliments) and overall enhance one's look.
    The obvious downsides are
    1) Poor quality control, particularly as they ramp production
    2) Low / inconsistent availability

    After Buying

    How should I break in my shoes?
    Use “Mac’s Break-in Procedure”:
    Shoes should be worn only on carpeting on three different days for a minimum of one hour in order to ascertain that the fit is proper.

    What is the "pen trick"?
    You put a pen where your foot joints are and then crease the shoe. This way the crease is set exactly where your joint bends and the crease is nice and even. People report varying levels of success with this, and it is generally thought to be more important for the PTB.

    Will my cordovan shoes stretch?
    The consensus is that cordovan stretches very little, if at all.

    Care and Cleaning
    How should I clean my cordovan shoes or boots?
    Use the “Mac Method”:
    1) Clean shoes with damp cloth

    2) Brush vigorously with a horsehair brush

    3) Buff with smooth cloth

    4) Use wax after a minimum of fifteen wearings


    Another cleaning/wax procedure is shown in this Leffot video, which recommends Saphir Renovateur and paste wax.

    Some cleaning advice from Alden of Carmel
    1. Do not use 'neutral' polish
    2. Do not clean cordovan shoes using saddle soap
    3. Do not attempt to clean cordovan shoes using petroleum distillates or cleaning fluids
    4. Do not use any spray shines or aerosol type waterproofs
    5. Do not attempt to dry wet shell cordovan shoes with heat or a heater. Wipe them dry, and allow them to dry naturally
    6. Do not attempt to polish shell cordovan shoes while wet

    Some cordovan cleaning advice from the Shoe Care thread

    Some cleaning advice from user MarioImpemba

    My shoes are dry and/or discolored in the creases. How can I fix this?
    Alden SF recommends using a small amount of cream in the creases. This can moisturize the area and also bring up some of the natural color in the leather. Most people use either Saphir Renovateur or Venetian Shoe Cream.

    My cordovan shoes got wet and there are tiny round marks or bubbles. What should I do?
    1) Next time try the Alden Leather Defender
    2) Brush them for awhile
    3) Try some Renovateur
    4) Try the deer bone treatment
    5) Just wait, it will go away evenutally

    My cordovan shoes has some white stuff on the leather. What do I do?
    This is called "bloom". One method is to use a hair dryer, hold it 6" away from the shoe, and then after it cools down use a chamois cloth and buff it for awhile. It should go away.

    Will Alden put a different sole on my shoes?
    Alden Restoration will now only recraft your shoes using original materials. If you want to put on a different sole, your best bet may be B. Nelson.

    Can I have speed hooks converted to eyelets?
    B Nelson will do it for $12 per eyelet (not per pair). A standard Alden boot with 4 pairs of speed hooks would therefore run $96. The top four eyelets would be off-centered with the bottom five, which is often done to compensate for the oblong size of the speed hooks.
    Here's an example: http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/18000#post_4958968

    I want new shoelaces for my Indy Boots. What are my options?
    1) Alden will mail you a pair if you ask. http://www.aldenshoe.com/
    2) The Alden Madison store will sell you waxed laces for ~$6. http://aldenmadisonny.com/
    3) Red Wing model 9011 will work, request them here http://www.redwingheritage.com/laces/

    LWB: Longwing blucher
    SWB: Shortwing blucher
    PTB: Plain toe blucher
    LHS: Leisure hand sewn (a loafer)

    A video by Epaulet about the Alden factory

    Cordovan: A Photo Gallery of Some of Mac's Shoes
    Whiskey: http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/11760#post_4267010
    Ravello: http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/11760#post_4266962
    Cigar: http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/11745#post_4266729
    #8: http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/11745#post_4266673

    Online Purchasing Options
    Leather Soul http://www.leathersoulhawaii.com/category/brands/alden/
    The Shoe Mart http://www.theshoemart.com/alden-shoes/bt-ald.html
    Alden Shop http://www.aldenshop.com/
    O'Connells http://shop.oconnellsclothing.com/dress_shoes.php
    Sherman Brothers http://www.shermanbrothers.com/brand...S&BrandCode=AL
    J. Crew http://www.jcrew.com/mens_category/s...enForJCrew.jsp
    Leffot http://blog.leffot.com/category/footwear/alden-brands/
    Ben Silver http://www.bensilver.com/Alden-American-Shoes.html
    Orvis http://www.orvis.com/
    Moulded Shoe http://mouldedshoe.com/alden1.html
    Unionmade http://www.unionmadegoods.com/alden_Mens.html
    Blackbird http://www.blackbirdballard.com/Alden_Mens.html
    Context http://www.contextclothing.com/brand.php?brand=Alden
    Epaulet http://www.epauletshop.com/servlet/t...den/Categories
    Renners Fine Boots & Shoes http://www.rennersbootsshoes.com/aldenshoes1.html
    Sky Valet http://www.skyvalet1.com/Alden.aspx
    Frans Boone Store https://www.fransboonestore.com/en/store/brands/alden.html
    The Bureau http://www.thebureaubelfast.com/shop/brand/58/alden/
    Alden of Carmel http://www.alden-of-carmel.com/index.cfm/shoes.htm
    J. Gilbert http://www.jgilbertfootwear.com/?q=node/90
    Need Supply http://needsupply.com/
    Tres Bien http://www.tresbienshop.com/
    Francos http://www.francos.com/
    Barneys http://www.barneys.com/
    Anecdotal sizing information:
    I find the Modified last (for my foot) is wider than the Barrie. 9D Modified fits me great, while 9D in Barrie is a snug fit, the E width for me in Barrie is too wide. I find the Trubalance last to be a little bit bigger overall last to the Barrie, whereas the Modified has a more tapered mid foot under the arch, opening up to a wider forefoot. (NewYorkRanger)

    Normal size is 10.5D, I take a 10D in Barrie and 10.5E in Leydon (borderline)

    I wear a 9 D in the Barrie and i've also tried a 9E in the Barrie. I won some of each and wear them both. The 9D is a little snug and the 9E is a little loose. I have a pair of 9.5 D leydon lasted LWB and they fit great. I went with a 9.5D on the grant.
    9.5 E in the Dalton and most all AE's
    9D in the truebalance (almost perfect fit)
    9.5 D in grant ( perfect fit)
    9.5 D in leydon (perfect fit)


    I wear 6.5D Barrie and the 7D Grants fits well for me (actually 6.5E also works fine). (dsmivtr)

    If you size down 1/2 for barrie (say 10E to 9.5E), don't try to size down 1 and go wider (to 9EE) (kippy).

    the best way to determine fit and comfort is to ensure that the ball of your foot is at the widest part of the shoes. some people may have short toes and some people may have longer toes but using that area as a reference point has always worked well for me. Also there is just a feel when you put on a pair of shoes if it feels slightly too large or slightly too tight. If you think it fits you well and is not causing any pain or slipping off when you lace them, then they are likely the right size.(MiniW)

  14. Alcibiades

    Alcibiades Senior member

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    Mar 31, 2009
    New Yawk

    Indeed, sir

  15. MrDV

    MrDV Senior member

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    Apr 21, 2012

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