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Thread: AE brown vs walnut

  1. #1
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    AE brown vs walnut

    I've had a pair of AE merlot mcallisters for a while and love them. While I've never done it, based on [Joe's Article](https://dappered.com/2016/08/how-to-...ingtip-oxford/), they can be worn with dark denim.

    I've been wanting a pair of dressier pair of shoes for my more casual side and I didn't want to worry about weather so I've been looking at getting a dainite soled Mcallister. At the moment that appears to mean walnut or brown. And at the moment, brown is about $150 cheaper. I don't care that much about the price difference but I want to make sure I'm getting the right color.

    Ignoring the closed lace question, I'm curious which color Mcallister would roll better with dark denim and various chinos as that's most of what I'd wear them with. My thoughts are that on one side the walnut color is more casual so it'd enhance the various casual-esque attributes of the Mcallister but on the other hand the brown is more subdued and might look less peacock-y.

    Thoughts?
    Last edited by jdapg; August 9th, 2018 at 02:17 AM.

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    Standout colours are inherently more casual, it's not really a relationship that's possible to avoid so you have to decide if you want to embrace it.

    That said, a dark brown Balmoral will read as a dress shoe, even if it is a full brogue, especially to the vast majority of people unfamiliar with the nuances of male footwear. To get it down to jeans would probably require a casual colour.

    Bourbon would probably work for a compromise, but from your post it seems as if your aim is along the lines of business casual. It might serve you better to switch to a blucher/derby design; then a standout colour is unnecessary to reach the desired blend of dressy and casual.

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    Varsity Member armedferret's Avatar
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    walnut strands are virtually a staple for AEs. i wear mine with all manner of suiting and it doesn't dress it down one bit.

    second the Bourbon mention as well; my moras and daltons work with damn near everything too.

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    Super Moderator hornsup84's Avatar
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    I wouldn't buy a McAllister in either color to wear with dark denim in casual scenarios. Walnut color with dark denim isn't really my type of look, although some people certainly try it, and in any color the mcallister is still a dressier shoe. It can be worn with denim, but in more situations where you're stretching denim up into biz casual (i.e., w button down and sportcoat) vs. the shoe actually being casual.

    Not a knock on McAllisters, I've owned 2 different pair of them and love them. But they range dressy (other than relative to, e.g., wholecuts or traditional captoes, but it's all a spectrum). IMO, even my brown longwings (can't recall the specific AE model they are) are still somewhat dressy for the look. I oftentimes pair my denim with leather or suede loafers if I want dressier side of casual.

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    Varsity Member evanparker's Avatar
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    i have brown strands, and constantly wish i had walnut ones.

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    Varsity Member armedferret's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by evanparker View Post
    i have brown strands, and constantly wish i had walnut ones.
    Keep an eye on BB sales; they routinely go for under $250 for spankin new firsts there. Just be cognizant of the poron insole changing internal volume, regardless of what AE claims.

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    Varsity Member evanparker's Avatar
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    brooks brothers unortauntely had the unfortunate idea to not carry ANY wide sizes in any of their shoes, so I can't buy anything there lol... thanks alot BB.

  8. #8
    Varsity Member mebejoseph's Avatar
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    I have a pair of bourbon AE Mcallisters and a pair of walnut AE Stuttgarts from Nordstrom rack (https://www.nordstromrack.com/shop/p...e?color=WALNUT ). The Stuttgarts are a derby wingtip, so the main differences are the colors and the oxford/derby difference.

    I enjoy(ed) them both a lot (there is a problem with the AE bourbon shoes--long story--they are now stripped down to natural color and I am in the process of custom dying them).

    The Mcallisters in a darker color are, in my opinion, just way too dressy to wear with jeans. On the other hand, the Stuttgarts in walnut are great with jeans AND if I want to have a more casual look with a suit, I think they look sharp with a light grey or light blue suit, despite the "rule" against wearing a derby shoe with a suit.

    Despite my experience with the bourbon color shoes, I love the color and would buy them over a darker brown. I would just be more careful with my polishing regime and not strip the color off.

    So, if I had to pick either the dark brown or the walnut, I would go with the walnut.

    Oh--but if you get the brown Mcallisters, being they are $150 cheaper, throw in another $60 and you can get walnut Stuttgarts.
    Last edited by mebejoseph; August 9th, 2018 at 11:17 AM.

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    Thanks for the thoughts all. I think a better way of phrasing my question is if my intuition that the brown color is dressier than the merlot color is correct. As one can see from the post from Joe I linked in my first post, merlot can look nice with dark denim but I already avoid it. As for bourbon, I'm specifically interested in a pair with dainite soles which isn't available in bourbon. That's also the same issue with the stuttgart suggestion.

    I care less about the open & closed toe debate than most although I have a pair of strandmoks which would cover most of my denim usage, but I was looking something with a rubber sole which would cover the zone a notch or two nicer looking.

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    I would vote brown is dressier than merlot.

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