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best sub $150 everyday business casual shoes

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  • Rocco
    replied
    Some stores don't. I returned shoebank shoes to the downtown Philly store last summer and they didn't charge me.

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  • dpark
    replied
    Originally posted by connersw View Post
    Maybe it's different store to store, but I have returned plenty of Shoebank shoes to the local AE store and never paid a restocking fee.
    Interesting. I was quoting the shoe bank site. Maybe some stores don't enforce the restocking fee, though. Definitely nicer if you don't have to pay that.

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  • wsupjs
    replied
    Are you willing to buy used, or only new? I assume new only due to apprehension towards AE seconds, but want to make sure.

    The AE Dundee seems to be the perfect fit for your requirements, except for price. You'll be very hard pressed to find a new pair for under $150, but they're a much higher quality boot than the JM, BR, and Stafford options previously listed.

    The AE Fifth Avenue you mentioned is far too dressy for your daily wardrobe.

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  • connersw
    replied
    Originally posted by dpark View Post
    You can return them to the store. You still pay the restocking fee unless you return them to a factory store.
    Maybe it's different store to store, but I have returned plenty of Shoebank shoes to the local AE store and never paid a restocking fee.

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  • Jw190m
    replied
    I don't know what size you are but AE has the Kenilworth in bourbon for $127 right now.http://www.shoebank.com/FactorySecon...DIM=D&SIZE=090

    Also, what about some suede bucks? Plain toe and several brands would have them for less than $100.

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  • connersw
    replied
    Originally posted by Danny View Post
    I love the look of the AE fifth avenues. (AE's are not in the running due to price point)
    I've long considered picking up a pair of Stafford Gunners (in cognac)
    I tried on BR's Jeremy oxfords today (Joe described the leather as "terrific" on the main site).

    Thoughts on the three shoes that I've mentioned?
    Suggestions for shoes I haven't considered?
    The 5th Ave is a cap-toe Balmoral. Way too formal for your work dress and would incredibly out of place.
    I know the Gunners get a ton of love on here, but they are really a throw away shoe. Definitely not a step up or an investment in quality footwear.
    I'm simply not a fan of plain toe oxfords. I think they look boring and the epitome of unsexy. I cannot think of a single style scenario where a different shoe would not look better.

    My recommendations would be for double monk, a chukka, or a chelsea (in that order). Preferably in suede.

    The BR Wyatt gets a lot of love on here, but it's not suede and maybe to much brogueing for you. The BR James (leather) and Ryan (suede) seem to be discontinued, but can be found on eBay if you know your BR size.
    The AE Gobi is $117 on Shoebank if they have your size. Fairly similar style to your Clarks so I ranked them second on the list, but a sleeker profile in suede might make enough of a change up.
    I don't have any recommendations for a ~$100 chelsea, but if you can find one, I think they would fit what you're looking for.

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  • JohnG
    replied
    [MENTION=14386]Danny[/MENTION]: have you thought about going with a pair of chelsea boots? Still a "timeless" style, but very different to Clarks you're wearing now.

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  • BobLikesDeals
    replied
    The next time the Gunners are in the $50-60 range, pull the trigger. Brown, cheap, soft leather, durable and stylish. They check every box. They are also immediately comfortable.
    I put brown cream polish on mine to try to add some depth to the color (it's a little too orange for me out of the box), and I've been pleased with the results.

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  • dpark
    replied
    Originally posted by Danny View Post
    [MENTION=13548]srlclark[/MENTION] I would maybe try a pair of AE seconds as long as I can return them to the store. Might be worth considering (but still at the top of my budget).
    You can return them to the store. You still pay the restocking fee unless you return them to a factory store.

    Simply return unwanted, unworn Factory-Second shoes to us by contacting the store for a prepaid return label and we will refund the purchase price, less $10 restocking fee per pair of Factory-Seconds returned or exchanged. You may also return your Factory-Seconds at any Allen Edmonds store. Returns to the Factory Outlet stores are free, but the $10 restocking fee will apply to each pair of Factory-Seconds returned to our Retail stores.
    For the record, I've ordered two pairs of seconds (Daltons) from AE. Both were in great shape. One pair I never could see what made them seconds. The other had a small discoloration on the tongue where you couldn't see it when laced. They both went back for fit issues. I still don't know exactly what size I need (assuming 9.5E at this point), but I got sick of paying the return fee.
    Last edited by dpark; March 11, 2016, 09:12 AM.

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  • srlclark
    replied
    Thanks for the suggestion! I actually have a down jacket (from Land's End). It's more casual than the quilted ones you were talking about, but I still think it's wool outerwear that I most need. I have a grey topcoat from BR and it's pretty nice, but the problem is that BR only sells its outerwear in S/M/L. I'm right in between M and L, so I had to decide whether to size down or up. So that I could wear it with a suit jacket underneath, I sized up. It's great when worn with a suit or sports coat but could be trimmer when I wear it without a jacket underneath. So, I'm hoping to pick up a J. Crew ludlow topcoat, as they do 40R/40L etc. I also really like the softness of the fabric. I don't own either a peacoat or a trench coat, and I'm thinking about picking up one of them as well, although I don't think either is an absolute necessity. I have in mind the LL Bean peacoat or the J. Crew dock peacoat, and the BR trench (although I don't like midnight blue, I love the navy trench they're selling). I also have a black Timberland topcoat but the lining got all ripped up inside, and it's not worth repairing, so I'm retiring it.

    Seems like you should pick up a pair or two of shoes before betting more chukkas. Hope you find something you're happy with.

    Originally posted by Danny View Post
    [MENTION=13548]srlclark[/MENTION] I would maybe try a pair of AE seconds as long as I can return them to the store. Might be worth considering (but still at the top of my budget).

    You should check out my thread about quilted jackets if you're about to look into outerwear.

    I'll browse around sierra trading post, but I like the idea of picking up shoes that someone here has experience with, so I can know that they will hold up to daily use.

    I only have one pair of clarks. They're the bushacre II desert boots in Beeswax leather (not suede, which would die quickly in the Seattle rain). I like them. Might have to buy a new pair at some point (these ones are getting worn down after 2.5 years of almost daily use). I also have a pair of timberland earthkeepers, but those are decidedly informal and look bad unless paired with jeans. In fact, wearing them with chinos today is what sparked this fierce desire for a better/more appropriate pair of shoes.

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  • Danny
    replied
    [MENTION=14378]Gabe[/MENTION] for some reason I can't stand the look of loafers. I don't judge anyone else for wearing them, but I (unfairly) associate the look with "old man" in my mind. Again, not trying to criticize anyone for wearing them, but loafers are just not for me.

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  • Gabe
    replied
    I picked up a pair of banana republic loafers during the sale a few days ago and I love them so far. Less than a hundred dollars and the leather is exactly what you're looking for. They might be a little casual, but I can't imagine they wouldn't work in a business environment

    Leave a comment:


  • Danny
    replied
    [MENTION=13548]srlclark[/MENTION] I would maybe try a pair of AE seconds as long as I can return them to the store. Might be worth considering (but still at the top of my budget).

    You should check out my thread about quilted jackets if you're about to look into outerwear.

    I'll browse around sierra trading post, but I like the idea of picking up shoes that someone here has experience with, so I can know that they will hold up to daily use.

    I only have one pair of clarks. They're the bushacre II desert boots in Beeswax leather (not suede, which would die quickly in the Seattle rain). I like them. Might have to buy a new pair at some point (these ones are getting worn down after 2.5 years of almost daily use). I also have a pair of timberland earthkeepers, but those are decidedly informal and look bad unless paired with jeans. In fact, wearing them with chinos today is what sparked this fierce desire for a better/more appropriate pair of shoes.

    Leave a comment:


  • srlclark
    replied
    [MENTION=14386]Danny[/MENTION]

    One other piece of information that might be helpful is a list of what you have from Clark's. You say you have suede chukkas. Are they dessert boots? Some other chukkas are going to be dressier than that, but I still wouldn't get a second pair of suede chukkas unless you have at least a couple of pairs of dress shoes that are neither boots nor suede.

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  • srlclark
    replied
    [MENTION=14386]Danny[/MENTION] Right. It's only 10 days since I completed a 90-day no-spend challenge. Since then, I bought two pairs of AE and one AE messenger bag, but I'm pretty sure I'm returning the messenger bag. Next up is outerwear, but then I'll turn my attention to spring blazers.

    You can return seconds to AE stores so as to avoid the restocking fee at the Shoebank, yes.

    There are plenty of other options to AE seconds. I'd consider the Johnston and Murphy Conard that was just recommended. Also, look up what's available at Sierra Trading Post. They sell last season's clearance items for 50%+ off. I once picked up a pair of Florsheims that were goodyear welted for $70.

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