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Vintage Dress shoe appreciation, tips, maintenance and advice

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by smfdoc, Jul 14, 2016.

  1. smfdoc

    smfdoc Distinguished Member

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    Welcome to the thread. I will defer comments on the cracked vamp to those who have worked with this issue.
     

  2. suitforcourt

    suitforcourt Distinguished Member

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    All masters start off as amateurs - my quote.
     

  3. JohnAAG

    JohnAAG Distinguished Member

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    @monsieurspiffy A lot depends on how deep the cracks are. For the superficial ones on my pair here's what I did:

    1. Lightly dry sand with 180 grit over the entire vamp to remove some of the surface layer of the leather and even out the color and texture.

    2. Brush and wipe with a damp cloth. Let dry.

    3. Dry sand the entire vamp with 320 grit. This helps smooth things out.

    4. Brush and wipe with a damp cloth. Let dry.

    5. If you're still seeing the cracks, lightly dry sand those areas with 400 grit until they are less visible.

    6. Brush and wipe with a damp cloth. Let dry.

    7. This is the trick I learned through trial and error on my contest pair: wet the entire vamp and lightly wet sand with 400 grit (I found that any finer grit just clogged up too quickly). Wet sanding may make the leather look a little "fuzzy". When the shoe is almost dry (damp, but no water comes out when you press the leather) apply conditioner (I used Bick 4). This will help smooth out the leather when it dries completely.

    Once the shoe was completely dry, I brushed it and applied another round of conditioner. Then I moved on to the coloring process.

    I messed up a few times trying to remove cracks and re-color my contest pair. Getting an even color was a pain to figure out. But doing the above left the starting color even across the entire vamp and the leather very smooth and ready to accept colored shoe creams.

    I started with a light brown cream and just kept going darker and darker until I reached a shade I was happy with. I also dampened the leather each time before applying the first 2 or 3 coats of cream. This also seemed to help the cream penetrate the leather and keep the color even and leather smooth.

    Hope that helps!
     

  4. flipstah

    flipstah Distinguished Member

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    Usually not a fan of bookbinder leather, but it works for autumn weather. Rocking Churchs today!

    F552F454-D5DD-44FB-AD5D-0A2846DB6F31.jpeg

    A7185D24-9CF0-4D63-8039-41E44D4DD9B5.jpeg
     

  5. suitforcourt

    suitforcourt Distinguished Member

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    Book binder / corrected grain / polished leather, has a place in the rotation. They are very effective in the rain.
     

  6. CWOyaji

    CWOyaji Senior Member

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    93EE66A8-A6E0-4349-9FA2-40C5BCFED3E3.jpeg Anybody want some project AE calf captoes for cost of shipping? 11.5D. Uppers and interiors good but need new soles and heels. Courtesy of The Bins. DB822429-DACB-40F1-BE45-FE92621E4463.jpeg
    EDIT: Spoken for.
    76D16F12-CCD5-4335-A17F-AF25A51A16B5.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2018

  7. Shoonoob

    Shoonoob Senior Member

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    Big day from the delivery drivers today!
    20180920_173422.jpg
    F.I. Saddles, nib British Walkers, Bostonian Crown Windsors and some Cat Paws all waiting on the porch.
    Original price tag on the Walkers $18.99.
    Will do a more detailed post on them later but they look a little better than the nos Dexters I have. Maybe just below the vintage Florsheim Imperials and LB Shepps.
     

  8. M635Guy

    M635Guy Distinguished Member

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    Hell yes brother. Last night was just a scruffy Korean BBQ place with an all you can eat/drink menu that filled the bill. I love that kind of place. Then there's the really good stuff.

    For those that go to Tokyo, hit Andy's Shin Himomoto. It's a fantastic local joint - seafood, etc.
     

  9. mosy

    mosy Distinguished Member

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    Many of the lower-end Santoni models (mostly with orange insole and black rubber outsole - price range 400-600 when new) seem to come with a very high shine finish. Is it possible that they are corrected grain?
     

  10. Thrift Couture

    Thrift Couture Distinguished Member

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    I really dig Cat's Paws heels.
     

  11. davidVC

    davidVC Senior Member

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  12. davidVC

    davidVC Senior Member

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    Now you can walk British.
     

  13. flipstah

    flipstah Distinguished Member

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    Indeed they are. Great commuting shoe.

    I want these to last so might get topsole on these.
     

  14. Nobleprofessor

    Nobleprofessor Distinguished Member

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    WOW! @JohnAAG this is a fantastic write-up. I am going to save this and try it.

    I have a pair of Alden Full Strap loafers that I bought on ebay. The seller did not disclose the cracking but they were pretty cheap (for Alden), so I decided to keep them. I am going to try this and see how it goes! Thanks for writing this up and for all your trial and error work!
     

  15. suitforcourt

    suitforcourt Distinguished Member

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    Check out @JohnAAG 's revival challenge pair. Nothing short of a miracle.
     

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