Why buy very high quality BLACK dress shoes?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by heidegger, Apr 10, 2012.

  1. Quadcammer

    Quadcammer Senior member

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    I disagree.

    I'd much rather get bespoke or high end version of what I wear regularly.

    Tuxedos are extremely fine garments usually, so additional quality is noticeable here. Not so, at least to me, on black cap toes.

    I have a pair of cheaney black captoes that I rarely wear. I could not ask for any more quality on this particular item.
     


  2. ctbomber

    ctbomber Well-Known Member

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    Just stay with Allen Edmonds then or something in the price range directly above if you really really need to see what its all about, especially if they are just for work. If you are worrying about "climbing the shoe ladder" you aren't really in a place in life where you should be dropping mucho dollars on them.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2012


  3. NORE

    NORE Senior member

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    I'd normally suggest going straight up to EG and not looking back but this is not the case for their black shoes. Every black pair of EGs I've owned, the leather seemed to have been dyed all the way thru, [which I believe] made it difficult for me to get a good shine. It's hard to explain but I'd agree with others that when it comes to black, a less expensive shoe should work. I'd save that EG cash for something in another color which is where they really shine in terms of finish & leather quality.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2012


  4. fritzl

    fritzl Senior member

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    business in general does suffice, imo.
     


  5. Holdfast

    Holdfast Senior member

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    There's no reason to overcomplicate things: if you're happy with your current shoes, there's no need to change. If you prefer the look & feel of a different brand, buy them instead. Deciding which you prefer isn't rocket science; you put them on your feet and see how they look and feel.

    This isn't something where you can assign a cost to different aspects of the shoe and then decide whether the total sum is favourable; it's a much simpler aesthetic value judgement about worth. Taken to a personal level: I buy shoes that I like the look of when I put them on; if they're expensive I buy fewer or opt not to buy them. It would be ridiculous to buy a cheaper pair I don't like as much instead; given that I already have other shoes, it wouldn't actually fill a need and so be a pointless expenditure. Assuming you already have a couple of pairs of shoes - and your post suggests you do - I don't see why the same principle can't apply.
     


  6. dandy1

    dandy1 Senior member

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    black shoes get a bad press on this forum as they are not seen as 'stylish', black is seen as very conservative and therefore a bit boring, the style conscious on here want to be different so have become too dogmatic about wearing brown shoes! i agree brown shoes often have a nice patina and therefore inject some richness of colour to a blue suit for example.

    however, a man can only wear black shoes with certain types of clothing without looking crass. black shoes look correct and fit more formal suiting, this is a fact. if you wear a brown shoe with a charcoal double breasted pinstripe suit (which i do regularly as do a lot of guys in City) you are going to look out of place and the more judgemental would think you frankly dont know how to dress. in terms of price/quality of black shoe, high quality shoes id argue usually are more comfortable, last longer and tbh probably look better in general (i think they would look better not just to shoe buffs on here but also to others although perhaps more subconciously). the bottom like is if you can afford EG buy them .. if not stick with the AE .. but dont fool yourself that AE = EG if AE/EG = Black. this is delusion.

    dandy.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2012


  7. heidegger

    heidegger Well-Known Member

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    I'm satisfied with Allen Edmonds but am curious about the high end shoes and it won't be big dent in my pocketbook. I'm primarily wondering about why someone would consider BLACK shoes specifically at that price level, given that the black shoes might be less distinguishable from AE as they won't have a noticeable patina/finish. It is not for others to notice, but more for myself in the sense that I would want something different but not forward like the French shoes. I wear black shoes more often at work but am considering non-black for the high end shoes for that reason. NORE seems to suggest that the value increment may be greater for non-black shoes but as dandy1 says the black shoes are more useful for formal situations - so that is the issue I was thinking about.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2012


  8. NORE

    NORE Senior member

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    When I did have a pair of black shoes, they were Allen Edmonds Strands. I then sold them and bought three or four pairs of black Edward Green shoes (all at different points owning one at a time), but aside from expanding my EG box situation, the AEs served the same purpose and fit well, too. Black shoes didn't get much wear so they all were sold off.

    Now for anything in a chestnut antique, dark oak antique, burgundy antique, etc. EG for me is a no-brainer. They just look like great shoes on top of everything else. I've never received a compliment on black shoes, but each time I pull out any other shoe I own I get at least a couple of unsolicited sincere compliments.
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2012


  9. Gdot

    Gdot Senior member

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    I would consider SHAPE to be the most important design criteria (quality issues aside). For with black shoes the shape becomes almost the only distinguishing feature aside from a fabulous polish.

    Take a look at these:

    http://www.bespoke-england.co.uk/products/cambridge-in-black-calf-dg70

    If you cannot tell the difference between these and a pair of Allen Edmonds then rock on with the AEs.

    There are, of course, also quality issues, such as oak bark tanned soles which will last longer, channeled and conceales stitching for longer wear, better linings for comfort, probably a better foot bed, etc. etc. etc. These sorts of things may not be apparent to the casual observer. But will affect comfort and longevity.

    I promise you that if you were to hold a pair of AEs next to a pair of G&Gs that you will have no problems at all discerning which is the better shoe.
     


  10. Quadcammer

    Quadcammer Senior member

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    meh, the comfort and longevity difference from a $300 AE to these GGs at $1000 no where near justify the price.

    Looks and assembly quality, sure.

    But is assembly quality all that important when either shoe will last at least 7-10 years. Is being better for the sake of being better important?

    To you, maybe...to me, maybe, but not $700 important.
     


  11. Ivon

    Ivon Senior member

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    I have a pair of those G&G Cambridges on the DG70, they are even sleeker in real life than the pictures show. I also owned AE PAs for many years, the difference is almost night and day held side by side. There is nothing wrong with AE shoes, classic design, good leather and GY welting. Just the shoes from Northampton have a higher degree of quality control and subjectively, design. Hence the higher prices.

    The "lowest" of the Northampton makers has a level of quality at least equal to AE, the Loakes, Cheaneys and Grensons, while the top of the food chain (Lobb, EG and G&G) are on their own strata. I own the shoes and while I agree the improvement in quality and design in noticeable, even in black, the ramp up in price is not proportionate. I would still buy the shoes for my own reasons.

    As expensive as those shoes are, they still only come in at about 1/3 to 1/2 of what I spend on a business suit and the shoes will serve me longer than the suits. My recommendation would be buy a pair if you can afford it, every man needs a pair of black captoes, these may outlive you.
     


  12. JubeiSpiegel

    JubeiSpiegel Senior member

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    Gdot, you must really like G&G's. I can see why, the last shape is quite stunning... :slayer:
     


  13. Northampton Novice

    Northampton Novice Senior member

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    Sadly this is true.


    Exactly my thoughts.
     


  14. Northampton Novice

    Northampton Novice Senior member

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    Hear what your saying...
     


  15. fritzl

    fritzl Senior member

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    is it allowed being fabulous...?
     


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