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What is the Best Value Shoe Brand for the Money

What is the Best Value Shoe Brand for the Money

  • Meermin

    Votes: 41 14.6%
  • TLB Mallorca

    Votes: 45 16.0%
  • Cheaney

    Votes: 12 4.3%
  • Carmina

    Votes: 46 16.4%
  • Crockett & Jones

    Votes: 54 19.2%
  • Other

    Votes: 83 29.5%

  • Total voters
    281

upsett1_spaghett1

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I like Meermin for their price point, and that is because their lasts somehow seem to fit me (I know a lot of folks struggle mightily with this). Considering their actual competition is something like Cole Haan or Magnanni or some other awful shit sold in department stores I think they're doing a great job. They're a good shoe, possibly the greatest value if we are looking at this simply from the perspective of expense.

That said, I don't know if it's fair to really compare them to many of the other brands I've seen mentioned in this thread when talking about "value" because as a lot of folks have stated very well this is highly subjective. When you really love shoes it's not about ticking boxes of features: GYW, hand welted, type of leather, fiddleback, etc. It's about an emotional response they produce and the way the design features coalesce. I don't believe Meermin really gets your juices flowing the way TLB Mallorca Artista, C&J, Carmina, Carlos Santos, or even Vass does (side note: I didn't see anyone mention Cobbler Union. I feel like they warrant mention in that price category). Those brands aren't trying to produce something purely utilitarian to serve a purpose they are also trying to make something that is artistic and makes you feel something.

I ticked other because around the same price point for Meermin, I think that Myrqvist makes a more attractive shoe overall albeit their offerings are not as expansive and they don't do as many varied GMTOs as Meermin or Carmina does.

I see a lot of folks mention Allen Edmonds on here. They're a well made shoe, but frankly besides the Park Avenue or Strand which are somewhat iconic I think you can buy a much more interesting version of any of their styles from most of the manufacturers mentioned here. AE is just kind of boring imo
 

SirWilliam

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Zonkey Boot and Vass are good value for money.

I definitely don't find Meermin worth the money. Not a huge fan of Carmina either.
 

Betta

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this one?


how is sizing?
yeah. Be warned that is not almond toe, you can request via customer support any toe in their RTW lasts ( https://fugashinshoemaker.com/last-guide/ ) .

Sizing has been spot on for me and partner. Instep wise we both have low instep and confirmed their RTW lasts would work.

Im usually US 11 D. I sent tracings in and they confirmed 10 UK.

Same for spouse. she's 6US, tracings confirmed 5uk

IMO you can't beat Fugashin's pricing even their RTW is at or above Carmina's
 

upsett1_spaghett1

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yeah. Be warned that is not almond toe, you can request via customer support any toe in their RTW lasts ( https://fugashinshoemaker.com/last-guide/ ) .

Sizing has been spot on for me and partner. Instep wise we both have low instep and confirmed their RTW lasts would work.

Im usually US 11 D. I sent tracings in and they confirmed 10 UK.

Same for spouse. she's 6US, tracings confirmed 5uk

IMO you can't beat Fugashin's pricing even their RTW is at or above Carmina's
Just to clarify you ordered the Chelsea from their custom program? What's the pricing like for that?
 

clee1982

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probably not at the moment, but if I want a beater this looks enticing, I never knew women size work same as men by the way (my wife on CJ is UK 3.5 on CJ women' last)

edit: you said she is US 6 and UK 5, that's men's size I assume? I think it's usually UK 3.5 = EU 36.5 (or EU 36) = US 6 for women?
 
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bicycleradical

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My experience is a little bit different because I have wide feet. The result is that in order to get a good fit on European shoes, I have to try several sizes. This may colour my experience as necessarily closer to guess work, so when I think of ordering shoes, I think of having to order 15.
I am in the wide foot camp as well and as such, most of my shoes are AE because I know they will fit. If I can make it to NYC and try on some Carmina shoes that work, I'll grab a pair however I do not want to buy multiple pairs of shoes then send most back either.
 

JFWR

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I am in the wide foot camp as well and as such, most of my shoes are AE because I know they will fit. If I can make it to NYC and try on some Carmina shoes that work, I'll grab a pair however I do not want to buy multiple pairs of shoes then send most back either.
My experience at the carmina store was that no shoes fit me at all. They offer a rain and Detroit eee but don't keep it in stock.

I tried on a pair of long wings that weren't especially tight but still uncomfortable on the Detroit last. Unlike English shoes which are wider in standard, carmina runs narrow.

Go to Crockett and Jones in Soho and speak with Kyle Amy. Tell him James sent you. It's an overall better experience and my pembrokes I bought there fit me splendidly.
 

clee1982

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I don't find standard English shoe wider, you need wide exactly where though (just toebox or everywhere)?
 

JFWR

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I don't find standard English shoe wider, you need wide exactly where though (just toebox or everywhere)?
Not as wide as EEE, but if you find the right size, English standard width is wider than D is in America.
 

Betta

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Just to clarify you ordered the Chelsea from their custom program? What's the pricing like for that?
Sorry missed this.

I've ordered

Womens RTW
1. wholecut almond toe oxford with D'annonay leather. GYW-270. $260 + shipping
2. Wholecut chelsea almond toe german box calf weinheimer . GYW-270. $260 shipping
These were requested in their ginza last (Almond toe) at no upcharge. Basically wanted the almond toe.

Woman MTO
3. Double monk. Crust in "emerald patina" not delivered yet . HW + hidden waist. initials on sole, leather +vibram + toe taps, specific lining color and outsole coloring as well (deep purple). $550.


Mens RTW
1. Burgundy double monk $260 + shipping, D'annonay leather GYW-270


In both these prices were as stated on their website ( $260 + shipping.). You can customize sole, upper type of leather without upcharge, type of toe (and sometimes last as well), without upcharge. Blake is much cheaper at $160ish depending on style.

Mens MTO. Both with several modifications, pitched heels (cuban), fiddle back, specific last, etc. Prices vary in what you ask for. Boots are $500 base I think? + shell upcharge. They used to have a "discount" for first time buyers and no shell upcharge for first pair.

1. Balmoral boot in blue shinki shell. HW.
2. Balmoral boot in Horween color 8. not delivered yet . HW + hidden waist

And their "business line" (whatever that means, its $226) is in Meermins range as well, https://fugashinshoemaker.com/dm/business/ ( though I have no experience with these personally, mostly going by reddit reviews)

probably not at the moment, but if I want a beater this looks enticing, I never knew women size work same as men by the way (my wife on CJ is UK 3.5 on CJ women' last)

edit: you said she is US 6 and UK 5, that's men's size I assume? I think it's usually UK 3.5 = EU 36.5 (or EU 36) = US 6 for women?
They have woman lasts as well or at least thats what they said lol (I kid, if you follow their social media they have several women's designs ) . They offer returns on their RTW too. Also just noticed that was a mistake in my part, who knows what I was thinking. Spouse is 7.5 US/ Uk5. As an FYI she also matched Carmina's 5uk.


I dont know much about differences in man vs woman last. For anecdotal evidence, we were at the sneaker store the other day and ladies size was out for a style she wanted, they recommend get the same style in smallest size in male ( Woman 7.5 to man 4 which was also out).

Also, the reason why we have commissioned so many pairs Fugashin is the flexibility in changing almost anything without significant uptick in prices. Quality wise I would say their RTW is a small tier (not a big one) above Carmina. Same-ish leathers (at least same tanneries, although that doesnt mean much, leather quality is a deeper conversation). Same finishing ( 8 SPI leather, 6 rubber), fudging is slightly better. On their RTW you do get a slight fiddleback for leather soles and slightly tighter waist when rubber.
The biggest issue I would say is the language barrier.

Also, mini-rant vs. Carmina... grr heartburn Carmina Twice failed MTOs. She ordered a woman chelsea boot which was clearly a 7.5uk and not 5uk, it was delayed 6 months (back in Q4-2018). Horrible experience, they did accept a return and refund. Then purchase and interaction communication just drops. From what I can tell when its US-side customer service. its horrible slow. Eg. I've gotten faster RTW stuff directly from Spain, while their warehouse in NYC (IIRC?) took 2+ weeks to ship. The same goes for replies... anyway...


(If you see a trend here, that's how I bribe my way into new shoes. oh would you look at that, two boxes!a pair for you a pair for me)...
 
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