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The leather is heavily 'finished'. And that finish is actually an acrylic 'paint.' From what I can see in the photos, the paint is what is cracking, not the leather...although I would not be surprised if the leather weren't cracking as well or at least not far behind.As much as I appreciate the advice, there is no way I could successfully pull that big of a project off. Any idea of what even happened? It's very demoralizing.
They're a pair of LoakeWhat brand are these? I would agree with coloring the cracks and then polish the shoes.
Will give this a shot!Actually they could probably be radically improved with Saphir Creme Renovatrice. The damage would be largely concealed such that it wouldn't be apparent to anyone unless they look closely.
Bear in mind, perhaps, that - at least the Loakes and I suspect the AEs - discussed above - are made of corrected grain leather (see DW's message, above}. Corrected grain will not absorb any amount of cream or polish. All you can do with 'polishing' corrected grain is to make it look more shiny. Once the surface has cracked, nothing more can be done. You can try to cover up the damage - although I wouldn't know why you would want to do this - or consider buying another pair of shoes. If you like Loake shoes, their 1880 range is a bit more expensive but the shoes are the real deal and not corrected grain. With the 1880's you can apply cream and polish and both will be absorbed by the leather. However, go easy on the amount of these products that you use.I feel really bad for the Loakes and the AEs, but the quality of leather seems to be the culprit. The cheapest solution would be to polish over the damaged areas over and over to at least give it a 'distressed' look.