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Planning my next 3-4 years of shoe purchases

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    Planning my next 3-4 years of shoe purchases

    Trying to pick the collective's minds for shoe suggestions as I'm slowing down my purchases and trying to buy better over the next couple of years. I'd like to expand my horizons beyond AE but I'm fairly limited in terms of models that I know of from other makers so I'll usually give the name of a familiar equivalent to give you the general idea of what I want. My budget per purchase for the near future is still topping out at around $500 and that'll be a big chunk of how much I'm allocating for clothes each year after a pretty indulgent 2013 and student loans to contend with.

    With this price range I think I'm looking mostly at AE, Alden, Meermin, Carmina (would love stuff from them!), Alfred Sargent (ditto), and C&J (likewise) for Goodyear welted, quality shoes. Also I'm a fan of Dainite soles whenever possible - hospital floors can be slippery! If you're familiar with these brands or others that fit in my price range I really want suggestions for the styles I'm looking at or whatever else you think I'm missing.

    Work environment: Hospital/clinic setting (physician...eventually)
    Usual work style: wool (usually) or dressy cotton trousers, fitted shirts, knit/grenadine/neat ties + white coat +/- sweater
    Casual: dark denim, gray or brown heavy weight chinos, or cream linen trousers, linen or OCBD shirts, lambswool sweaters. I try to wear my sportcoats whenever I can because work doesn't afford me too many opportunities, so I make use of my nice shoes even outside of work.

    Current Rotation
    Casual:
    • Walk Over tan suede bucks
    • AE Malvern in brogue suede (wear these to work as well)
    • Alden #8 Jumper Boots for J. Crew (coming soon, will wear to work also)
    • Wolverine 1K in cordovan color

    Dress:
    • AE Park Aves - black; barely wear these
    • AE Kenilworth - brown; love them
    • AE Fifth Ave - dark brown
    • AE Fifth Street - black; wear these regularly
    • AE Patriots - brown; wear sparingly
    • C&J punch toe bals - medium brown (a lighter weight and color Fifth Ave with a slightly elongated toe cap); I wear these often


    My thoughts on what's missing/what I'd like:

    I'd like another pair or two of bluchers, a pair of dress shoes in suede, something in burgundy, something in shell, and something with wings. I think that especially since I rarely wear suits bluchers can serve double duty for me both in my business casual outfits and when I'm off work.

    Note: I will not wear balmorals with jeans or other casual trousers and I find walnut to be a bit loud for my style, though I'm not opposed to it as long as it's not too orange.

    • I think a pair of brown suede bluchers fills a few holes. I've added myself to the waitlist for the RL Slaton in Snuff Suede, which I can get as AE 2nds for well below my price point (and even include in a 2 for $250). I've looked at the AE Strand in suede and there's too much stitching for me (and also I like the snuff more than the brogue color). There are also these and these from Meermin. I think the former may be too hard to dress down (my aversion to casual balmoral wear) and the latter too hard to dress up? (Though I do wear my Malverns w/ wool trousers).
    • For shortwings, there are two on my mind: Merlot AE McAllisters and the RL Marlow (also a blucher, and shell!). Honestly I want both, and I'm targeting the latter as a graduation gift to myself if I can catch it at 40% off. The former can be bundled in a 2 for $250 deal. But again, I want to buy better and if you have suggestions for upgraded versions of these, please share!
    • I'm on the fence about longwing shoes: I have a pair of RL Sanderson I'm trying to sell bc they're too big. If I can find something with a similarly sleek profile I'd consider it. I know trads love burgundy shell MacNeils from AE but they seem a bit clunky for me. I'd personally rather put that money toward the Marlows or a pair of sleek MTO shell PTB with Dainite soles.
    • The dreams: EG Shannon and Galway boots. I like boots and I can not lie.


    So, what do you think I'm missing? Got any suggestions? Like I said, I'm trying to plan for the long haul, I've made a lot of silly purchases in the past two years and now I'm trying to clean up and play it smart. I have enough shoes at the moment that I can afford to be patient and save up for 2-3 years if there's something I really like.
    Last edited by LosRockets; February 1, 2014, 10:29 PM.

    #2
    Originally posted by LosRockets View Post
    • For shortwings, there are two on my mind: Merlot AE McAllisters and the RL Marlow (also a blucher, and shell!). Honestly I want both, and I'm targeting the latter as a graduation gift to myself if I can catch it at 40% off. The former can be bundled in a 2 for $250 deal. But again, I want to buy better and if you have suggestions for upgraded versions of these, please share!
    • I'm on the fence about longwing shoes: I have a pair of RL Sanderson I'm trying to sell bc they're too big. If I can find something with a similarly sleek profile I'd consider it. I know trads love burgundy shell MacNeils from AE but they seem a bit clunky for me. I'd personally rather put that money toward the Marlows or a pair of sleek MTO shell PTB with Dainite soles.
    My two cents: get the Marlows. I'm sure you know when they go on sale. Don't bother with the McAllisters. I personally find longwings to be a bit meh and old-mannish, but YMMV.

    (Disclosure: I own both the Marlows and Merlot McAllisters)

    Comment


      #3
      Actually I've not quite nailed down when the big RL sale happens and how to get in on it early, if possible. And I need to get sized in the damn things. Nobody nearby carries them and the RL store in Georgetown didn't have them either when I went over winter break. I'm a 9.5D in the AE 5 last and honestly most other dress shoes. 9D in Barrie.

      Any recommendation for something in burgundy then? Adelaides or austerity brogues perhaps? Also forgot to add pretty much anything by G&G to my "Dream" list

      Comment


        #4
        These are a nice pair of burgundy adelaides:
        http://www.brooksbrothers.com/Peal-C...efault,pd.html

        C&J - 341 Last.

        Comment


          #5
          Los, sounds like you and I have very similar wardrobes, even if you're from that school down the road...

          Originally posted by LosRockets View Post
          I think a pair of brown suede bluchers fills a few holes. I've added myself to the waitlist for the RL Slaton in Snuff Suede, which I can get as AE 2nds for well below my price point (and even include in a 2 for $250). I've looked at the AE Strand in suede and there's too much stitching for me (and also I like the snuff more than the brogue color).
          I wish I had room in my shoe rotation for those Slatons. Something about their simplicity is quite attractive. I've seen them go as low as $130 from the AE Outlets.

          Originally posted by LosRockets View Post
          For shortwings, there are two on my mind: Merlot AE McAllisters and the RL Marlow (also a blucher, and shell!).
          If it were me, I'd stick with bluchers when it comes to shortwings. Especially given your aversion (and mine) to wearing balmorals with casual pants, I think you'll get more wear out of bluchers. Oh, and those Marlows are just gorgeous.

          Originally posted by LosRockets View Post
          So, what do you think I'm missing? Got any suggestions? Like I said, I'm trying to plan for the long haul, I've made a lot of silly purchases in the past two years and now I'm trying to clean up and play it smart. I have enough shoes at the moment that I can afford to be patient and save up for 2-3 years if there's something I really like.
          Hmmm. Only thing I can think of is more suede. I particularly like suede because it's an easy way to make your getup more interesting. For one reason or another, it feels less boring (than calf) at times. I've gotten more wear out of my snuff suede single monks than I expected, so perhaps that could be something to consider.

          Comment


            #6
            Planning for 3-4 years! Wow. I can barely plan for 3-4 weeks.

            I'd add a pair of Red Wing 877s (motorcycle-type boots), myself. You need something lower priced and yet quality, and something truly rugged.

            Comment


              #7
              I think you'd get a ton of wear out of the Marlows, and the Meermin Snuff suede boots - those are both on my radar too! I'm trying to figure out what my clothing budget is now that we've got 2 little ones, but I will probably save up for those two.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by Duvel View Post
                Planning for 3-4 years! Wow. I can barely plan for 3-4 weeks.

                I'd add a pair of Red Wing 877s (motorcycle-type boots), myself. You need something lower priced and yet quality, and something truly rugged.
                Sorry, but this doesn't fit my style at all, nor my needs. Thanks for the suggestion though. I plan to throw a lugged sole onto my Wolverine 1K miles when the leather sole gets beaten down.

                @Jamie: The only concern I have with the Meermin boot is that it's perhaps too plain? The perf toe on the Slatons breaks up the suede expanse juuust a bit. The other thing w/ Meermin is that I'm worried about getting accurate sizing. I live in a big city but a Southern one so they're unlikely to bring a trunk show here anytime soon. Love the sole on it though. Really torn between the Meermin boot and the RL Slaton.

                Comment


                  #9
                  I'm not one to help much with narrowing down to a few shoes or planning them out in advance. I will say that one of the AE shoes I hated getting rid of most was my bourbon McAllisters. Those things were gorgeous and a super versatile color but just not a good fit for my foot.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Speaking of which, I was looking for pics of Bourbon McAllisters and came across this: http://threads.dappered.com/showthre...hoe-collection How many of those do you have left?

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                      #11
                      7 for now, although probably down to 6 shortly. I'll have to take an updated pic this month some time.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by LosRockets View Post
                        For shortwings, there are two on my mind: Merlot AE McAllisters and the RL Marlow (also a blucher, and shell!). Honestly I want both, and I'm targeting the latter as a graduation gift to myself if I can catch it at 40% off. The former can be bundled in a 2 for $250 deal. But again, I want to buy better and if you have suggestions for upgraded versions of these, please share!
                        ...
                        So, what do you think I'm missing? Got any suggestions? Like I said, I'm trying to plan for the long haul, I've made a lot of silly purchases in the past two years and now I'm trying to clean up and play it smart. I have enough shoes at the moment that I can afford to be patient and save up for 2-3 years if there's something I really like.
                        Originally posted by Chareth View Post
                        My two cents: get the Marlows. I'm sure you know when they go on sale. Don't bother with the McAllisters. I personally find longwings to be a bit meh and old-mannish, but YMMV.

                        (Disclosure: I own both the Marlows and Merlot McAllisters)
                        +1. I have the Marlows and they are one of my favorite shoes. A great purchase, you won't regret it!

                        Originally posted by LosRockets View Post
                        Actually I've not quite nailed down when the big RL sale happens and how to get in on it early, if possible. And I need to get sized in the damn things. Nobody nearby carries them and the RL store in Georgetown didn't have them either when I went over winter break. I'm a 9.5D in the AE 5 last and honestly most other dress shoes. 9D in Barrie.

                        Any recommendation for something in burgundy then? Adelaides or austerity brogues perhaps? Also forgot to add pretty much anything by G&G to my "Dream" list
                        There is an RL sale in the spring sometime but the best sale for Marlows seems to be in November. I got mine during a 40% + 15% off sale in Nov. two years ago. I assume you're on their mailing list.

                        Just tossing out a few more ideas:

                        For an adelaide, I have the C&J Westbourne in chestnut, but the AS Moore in cherry looks amazing too:
                        http://www.afinepairofshoes.co.uk/pr...e-moore-cherry
                        As does the G&G St. James in vintage cherry:
                        http://www.gazianogirling.com/pages/bench-made

                        For austerity brogues, this Vass has been on my "want" list for a few months: http://www.nomanwalksalone.com/index...ford-1788.html

                        It sounds like you are decently set for balmorals though. I'd budget for the RL Marlow next, especially if it goes on sale this spring.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          The G&G looks quite nice but out of my price range right now. I'll definitely consider jumping on the Marlow this year if I can get a good deal, but I'm fine waiting. That Vass isn't bad, though it seems a little chunky for me, maybe I'm just not looking at it right though.

                          Update: I ruled out the Meermin suede boots after seeing this pic from Nordic Fit: http://flockler.com/thumbs/141/meerm..._noupscale.jpg

                          It's not bad looking by any means but I think I prefer the toe cap and shape of the RL Slatons a bit more, especially sticking out from under a pair of gray wool trousers, as is my norm.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Update: Received my RL Slaton today. Paid $138 for them (firsts, direct from RL!) and I am really happy with the purchase. They go with almost everything I have and fit quite well. Still running a bit long vs. most other 9.5D I own, but on the snug side with respect to width - and I expected this based on my experience w/ the RL Sandersons in 10D. Also got the J. Crew Alden boots in last week, they're absolutely bonkers. The Barrie last is IMO a biiit clunky vs. the Aberdeen or Plaza last for wearing w/ wool trousers but I still think I can pull it off if I go for a textured and layered look. I have a ton of perf-toe shoes/boots now, so the Marlow are definitely next on my list as I could use a wingtip. Still hoping to get something burgundy or merlot eventually, but it's not a priority.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              How'd you get slatons for 138?

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