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suitforcourt

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Day 1 of no shoes for a year and I wake up to you trying to get me shopping. That's some spectacular group enabling. :decisions:

I did a 6 month hiatus recently (January to June).

In May, I picked up 5 pairs of new shoes. And I am bidding on a pair of AE Park Avenue.

I hope to initiate a one year hiatus as well. Sometime in the fall.

I previously tried to rally other members to join me. The call fell on death ears. Perhaps we can do it together. The problem of course is this group. Yes. That's what I will tell myself.
 

suitforcourt

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Those are great. The way the uppers are cut really makes them look like early 20’s period pieces. Even the slightly squared off toebox looks right:

xgifg72j62zfqo.jpg


On a related note, I’ve never been a fan of derby shoes (generally I like balmorals), but I love gunboat bluchers, especially longwing gunboats. I’ve been trying to figure out what it is about the separated quarter of a derby that bugs me, because that’s the key difference that separates the derby from bals and bluchers.

If my pair is really from the 1920s, then the condition is absolutely fantastic and a testament to the quality of shoes that Nettleton et al produced in the US.

The only cure to your dilemma is to buy half a dozen of each. Wear them with pride. And then decide what you like, or don't like about the various styles. Then donate the ones you don't like to members of the brotherhood.
 

wasmisterfu

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If my pair is really from the 1920s, then the condition is absolutely fantastic and a testament to the quality of shoes that Nettleton et al produced in the US.

The only cure to your dilemma is to buy half a dozen of each. Wear them with pride. And then decide what you like, or don't like about the various styles. Then donate the ones you don't like to members of the brotherhood.

Didn’t mean to imply that I thought they actually were from the 20’s, just that they look period correct.

That being said, I have a suit (made for what would have been considered a giant at the time) made by Raab Bros. in 1931, that sat in a garment bag undisturbed for most of its life. It was worn, at most, one time. Other than a few adjustments, it was a damn near perfect fit for something bespoke for another 6’5”+ gentleman. It also looks brand new, without so much as a wrinkle or a stray thread (made of the heaviest wool I’ve ever seen). So sometimes you do find such things perfectly preserved.
 

smfdoc

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I've been thinking about the self-imposed shoe buying hiatus and decided that it makes no sense for me. My dad is 90 this year. He can barely walk and has lymphedema in the feet and ankles from congestive heart failure. He has not been able to wear normal shoes for years and years. The time will come when we may not be able to wear the shoes we love, so why interrupt it with a hiatus? It's like abstaining from sex for a year. The day will come when that is no longer an option either so why miss time with it now?
 
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hms056

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Thoughts on whether these vintage AE kite tassels are shell? Pictures aren't very clear, and a few minutes of googling variations of shell, kite tassel, loafers, allen edmonds, etc turned up nothing helpful.

img2.png
img.png
 

hms056

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I just realized they aren't kite tassel loafers, just tassel loafers, but my searching involved enough variations excluding "kite" to cover for my mistake.
 

wasmisterfu

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Thoughts on whether these vintage AE kite tassels are shell? Pictures aren't very clear, and a few minutes of googling variations of shell, kite tassel, loafers, allen edmonds, etc turned up nothing helpful.

The tassels are the 8877 Berwick in Burgundy Polished Cobbler. The Barrington penny loafer is model 7077 also in Burgundy Polished Cobbler. Pages 7 and 13 in the Fall 1989 AE catalog: https://bit.ly/2t4sQo6

Polished Cobbler == corrected grain. 100% not shell cordovan.
 

hms056

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As a follow up, is there anything you guys look for when trying to find shell? While the pictures weren't very good (which prevented me from seeing whether there was any creasing), that second picture looks so much like shell to me. It has gentle rolling and sort of a dull shine to it. The tongue area (not sure if this is the right term for a loafer) also looks thick/supple, rather than the stiff plasticky look I associate with CG. Granted, I only have one pair of shell shoes so I don't have much in-person experience handling shell.
 

wasmisterfu

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Thanks for the help! I'm seriously impressed with the knowledge on this thread...
Not sure if you should be impressed... or feel sorry for us.

That said, it only took a minute to figure out. The style of insole used on the Barrington was only around a few years, starting in 89. So I pulled the 89 catalog, looked up the Barrington and it was there. Then I just looked for a visual twin to those tassels and found it on page 7. The Berwick never had a shell variant (to my knowledge) and if you look closely at those poor-quality photos, you can just make out the coarse wrinkles of CG leather creasing on the right Berwick.
 

madhat

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As a follow up, is there anything you guys look for when trying to find shell? While the pictures weren't very good (which prevented me from seeing whether there was any creasing), that second picture looks so much like shell to me. It has gentle rolling and sort of a dull shine to it. The tongue area (not sure if this is the right term for a loafer) also looks thick/supple, rather than the stiff plasticky look I associate with CG. Granted, I only have one pair of shell shoes so I don't have much in-person experience handling shell.
Start with the model number if you are not sure a particular shoe is shell:
http://shellcordovanmodels.com
Then, look for rolls at vamp rather than creasing of any type, darkening at said rolls, rolling into eyelets, JR soles, etc.
Always assume non-shell until verified
 

2Deuce2

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I've been thinking about the self-imposed shoe buying hiatus and decided that it makes no sense for me. My dad is 90 this year. He can barely walk and has lymphedema in the feet and ankles from congestive heart failure. He has not been able to wear normal shoes for years and years. The time will come when we may not be able to wear the shoes we love, so why interrupt it with a hiatus? It's like abstaining from sex for a year. The day will come when that is no longer an option either so why miss time with it now?
Agreed @smfdoc . Again, it’s not like we’re chasing whores and drinking whiskey. I did read that here once. Or twice.
 

wasmisterfu

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As a follow up, is there anything you guys look for when trying to find shell? While the pictures weren't very good (which prevented me from seeing whether there was any creasing), that second picture looks so much like shell to me. It has gentle rolling and sort of a dull shine to it. The tongue area (not sure if this is the right term for a loafer) also looks thick/supple, rather than the stiff plasticky look I associate with CG. Granted, I only have one pair of shell shoes so I don't have much in-person experience handling shell.
AE polished cobbler was very good quality CG. Basically they used fairly good quality leather and applied a CG style finish for shiny slick effect, rather than to hide defects. That said, it’s still sealed up leather so once it hits the wall, it’s all down-hill and there’s no treating the leather without stripping the finish off (which is possible, as thread participants have done it) but difficult (and depending on the thickness of the finish, the harder it is).

As for finding shell, first, get to know the AE catalog archive and verify model numbers against the archive. If Florsheim, vcleat.com is your best friend as DavidVC has cataloged a wealth of information. Finally, ask the seller for clear pictures and, if you’re not 100% confident (especially if the price is commensurate with shell) that you are buying the real deal, don’t push the buy/bid button. Instead come back here and our crack team of highly paid and credentialed researchers will resolve the question.
 

smfdoc

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AE polished cobbler was very good quality CG. Basically they used fairly good quality leather and applied a CG style finish for shiny slick effect, rather than to hide defects. That said, it’s still sealed up leather so once it hits the wall, it’s all down-hill and there’s no treating the leather without stripping the finish off (which is possible, as thread participants have done it) but difficult (and depending on the thickness of the finish, the harder it is).

As for finding shell, first, get to know the AE catalog archive and verify model numbers against the archive. If Florsheim, vcleat.com is your best friend as DavidVC has cataloged a wealth of information. Finally, ask the seller for clear pictures and, if you’re not 100% confident (especially if the price is commensurate with shell) that you are buying the real deal, don’t push the buy/bid button. Instead come back here and our crack team of highly paid and credentialed researchers will resolve the question.

+1 on the advice @hms056. The best rout is to try to determine the maker and style number on a shoe and then look them up on http://shellcordovanmodels.com. Great resource. If that is not possible, then it becomes a guessing game and you sometimes have to ask for the assistance and then just roll the dice.
 

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