Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

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lightheir
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Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by lightheir » Wed Dec 14, 2016 10:24 pm

I've been a lifelong wearer of mens dress shoes in the $75-$120 range. My current pair is 3 years old and it looks it, it not a good way. Plenty of scuffs that are showing white (it's not leather) and plenty of sole wear.

I was wondering if there is any benefit other than the obvious 'better pricier look' of a $300+ pair of mens dress shoes.

For example, I took a pair of my $120 mens dress shoes to a shoe repair guy after the heel totally fell apart, and despite him not being snobbish at all, he just said he couldn't repair that type of shoe. Meanwhile, he was more than happy to fix my wife's work shoes (which were more expensive but I'm not sure how much, but they were clearer better than my faux-leather deal.)

Any longevity, ease of repair, or other benefits?

dannyboy
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by dannyboy » Wed Dec 14, 2016 10:43 pm

In my experience, there are a number of benefits to buying higher-quality shoes, the first of which is that they are more easy to repair. A lot of shoes in the $300+ price range have what's called a Goodyear Welt, which is a special labor-intensive manufacturing technique that makes the shoe semi-waterproof and allows the sole to be easily replaced. If you take good care of nice shoes, they can last for a decade. Another great aspect of high-end footwear is the general quality. The leather is supple, the seams are perfect, and the shoe tends to be created from larger pieces of leather; all things that add to the longevity and visual appeal of the shoe. If you're into being well-dressed, high-end shoes also tend to look better. I certainly respect people who choose to purchase cheap shoes and spend their money elsewhere; however, you won't be fooling anyone who knows the first thing about fashion.

$300, however, is a lot of money to spend on a pair of shoes. For this reason, I often go lightly used for footwear. I frequently browse local second-hand luxury stores, and find great deals. Last year, for example, I bought a two-year-old pair of $600 Salvatore Ferragamo loafers for $90. They looked nearly new, and had all the benefits of high-end shoes without the costs. The downside of this method is that it is time-consuming; you need to know the right places to look, and you need to check them constantly. If this option isn't available to you, I would still recommend purchasing nice shoes, though definitely wait until a post-Christmas sale or something of the sort. Whatever you choose, good luck in the hunt!

Jd1006
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by Jd1006 » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:16 am

Resoling is generally cheaper than buying a new shoe over time. The higher quality shoes will look nice for years, with some basic care. It's a higher initial investment, but more than makes up for it. I have 4 pairs of shoes that I purchased over the past 5 years and resoled all of them at $80/pair once, where I bet I would had to purchase new shoes at least twice if I purchased a nice looking but lesser quality shoe.

youdiditr2
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by youdiditr2 » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:31 am

Bought 2 pairs of Allen Edmonds shoes for around $200 to $300 each and after wearing them for about 150 days a year for 3 years, both shoes either up with a hole on the bottom of the shoes.

Guess it doesn't matter how expensive the shoes are and how long they last if you wear them over 150 days a year, at least that's what my workers told me when I told them these shoes sucked.

penumbra
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by penumbra » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:36 am

Well, I have to disagree. I never spend more than $100 or so on shoes, usually less. They seem to last forever. I have shoes I bought 15 and 20 years ago, still look good and classic styles stay in fashion. I have gotten rid of an occasional pair, but only because I got tired of them. I second the second hand idea. Have a pair of Gucci loafers I got lightly used in Aspen,that are terrific. Wouldn't think of spending $300 for shoes. But that's just me..

desiderium
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by desiderium » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:49 am

Santoni is an expensive brand that fits me well. I can walk for miles in a dress shoe with ease. Cost 4-600 when they go on sale. I can't wear them out and have accumulated 4 pairs over the last decade. They are easy to put back into new looking shape. The ones I wear 3-4 days a week have never needed resoling after 4 years. They really dress up ordinary slacks and I get comments all the time. They enhance my professional presence and are competitive with cheaper shoes when you consider net daily cost.

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Driver
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by Driver » Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:14 am

I bought a pair of Black Allen Edmonds for around $300 around 8 years ago. I just had them resoled this year. The heels have been replaced twice. Before the Allen Edmonds I'd spend around $100 per year for Black Dress shoes. I got my moneys worth. They're much more comfortable than $100 ones I'd used to buy. I do take care of them though. I always use a shoe tree and polish them once in awhile.

DSInvestor
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by DSInvestor » Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:15 am

youdiditr2 wrote:Bought 2 pairs of Allen Edmonds shoes for around $200 to $300 each and after wearing them for about 150 days a year for 3 years, both shoes either up with a hole on the bottom of the shoes.

Guess it doesn't matter how expensive the shoes are and how long they last if you wear them over 150 days a year, at least that's what my workers told me when I told them these shoes sucked.
Allen Edmonds has a recrafting service that will rebuild your shoes from the ground up. Here's a link to the redrafting page where there is a short video that explains what they do:
http://www.allenedmonds.com/our-story/recrafting.html
Wiki

MinimalJ
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by MinimalJ » Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:50 am

lightheir wrote:I've been a lifelong wearer of mens dress shoes in the $75-$120 range. My current pair is 3 years old and it looks it, it not a good way. Plenty of scuffs that are showing white (it's not leather) and plenty of sole wear.

I was wondering if there is any benefit other than the obvious 'better pricier look' of a $300+ pair of mens dress shoes.

For example, I took a pair of my $120 mens dress shoes to a shoe repair guy after the heel totally fell apart, and despite him not being snobbish at all, he just said he couldn't repair that type of shoe. Meanwhile, he was more than happy to fix my wife's work shoes (which were more expensive but I'm not sure how much, but they were clearer better than my faux-leather deal.)

Any longevity, ease of repair, or other benefits?
I bought 4 Allen Edmonds pairs and have not had any issues with them. It's nice getting complements on them too! Women especially notice them, haha. Just make sure you watch the youtube clips on how to maintain them and they'll last you years! As far as price goes, just sign up to their email list and they often have clearance sales for shoes that range between $200-$300 dollars. Make sure you buy the shoe trees and polish that's required.

Cruise
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by Cruise » Thu Dec 15, 2016 2:04 am

Alden shoes are a winner,bet very expensive (+$500) and can be resoled forever. I have pairs that have lasted 15 years. A huge initial investment, but a quality product that saves in the long-term.
Last edited by Cruise on Thu Dec 15, 2016 2:11 am, edited 1 time in total.

edge
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by edge » Thu Dec 15, 2016 2:09 am

I don't think you can correlate longevity with price. There are plenty of ultra thin/comfortable $500+ Italian shoes that are not durable.

Allen Edmonds are generally sturdy shoes.

sambb
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by sambb » Thu Dec 15, 2016 5:03 am

Durability, comfort, price, and style are four separate issues. Not always related.
I love the comfort of certain pairs, even some that are expensive and not durable. I like others that are durable, but not comfortable.
Allen edmonds can be durable, but not always. Leather soles are changeable, but so are other types.
Comfort is entirely personal. benefits are varied by person and shoe.

metacritic
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by metacritic » Thu Dec 15, 2016 5:50 am

I agree with this assessment. And I tend to buy Aldens, which most people rightly will find absurdly expensive. I resole them and anticipate getting nearly a decade of wear out of them. Even so, the repairs and original costs add up to something equivalent to the price of a new set of much cheaper shoes every two years. I like the look so I pay the high price. But I disagree with advocates of expensive shoes who argue that they offer better value.
edge wrote:I don't think you can correlate longevity with price. There are plenty of ultra thin/comfortable $500+ Italian shoes that are not durable.

Allen Edmonds are generally sturdy shoes.

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by Swansea » Thu Dec 15, 2016 6:44 am

I have used Allen Edmonds recrafting service. It is excellent.

Quark
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by Quark » Thu Dec 15, 2016 7:25 am

edge wrote:I don't think you can correlate longevity with price. There are plenty of ultra thin/comfortable $500+ Italian shoes that are not durable....
Exactly. There are some very expensive shoes that do not appear to be designed for walking outdoors. There are some that would probably last for decades.

alfaspider
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by alfaspider » Thu Dec 15, 2016 8:53 am

I've made it a decade on my two pairs of $100 Cole Hahns. They've each been resoled thrice and have many miles of New York City walking in them in all weather. I see no reason to replace them now.

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by jdb » Thu Dec 15, 2016 11:53 am

Cruise wrote:Alden shoes are a winner,bet very expensive (+$500) and can be resoled forever. I have pairs that have lasted 15 years. A huge initial investment, but a quality product that saves in the long-term.
+1. A lifetime investment. I probably have almost a dozen pairs bought between 15 and 25 years ago, both dress and business casual, look like new. Never had to discard one. In fact gave a couple pairs to one of my adult sons who has same shoe size who as pediatrician is on his feet all day, they are his go to shoes. Now that I am semi retired don't have need for the dress pairs much but the business casuals are my regular wear and the leather chukka my Chicago and New York outdoor winter shoes. About half of them have been serviced by Alden, almost get new shoes after the service, not sure current price but probably around $150. And of course they look great and can't beat the feel, love the steel shank. Other than price only downside is have to take them off at airport security even if TSA. And made in USA.
Last edited by jdb on Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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simplesimon
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by simplesimon » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:14 pm

I have three pairs of Allen Edmonds I've owned for about 3-4 years now and rotate everyday. Rotating and polishing twice a year has helped them look new.

Minor scuffs happen all the time from walking to and from the train and sitting in an office chair (wheels hitting the back of the shoe) but polishing and a good brush takes care of that.

I'm not in the market for a shoe, but if one of these shoes eventually are unserviceable, I'd buy Aldens. I don't like the direction AE is going with their brand.

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by stoptothink » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:25 pm

penumbra wrote:Well, I have to disagree. I never spend more than $100 or so on shoes, usually less. They seem to last forever. I have shoes I bought 15 and 20 years ago, still look good and classic styles stay in fashion. I have gotten rid of an occasional pair, but only because I got tired of them.
Same deal. In fact, it is the same response with every clothing-related thread. I have never spent more $100 on a pair of shoes, of any kind. The dress shoes I am wearing today at work, I actually purchased them for my senior prom, literally two decades ago. Probably not a name brand anybody here would recognize, but they have classic style and are in great condition after probably a few hundred wears. I have several similar pairs, of varying ages, all that I expect to have in another decade. I've never had to have a pair of dress shoes re-soled, just as I have never had the cuffs of the dress shirts I get for <$15 at Ross tear or become unthreaded. I commute to work by foot and these things are still good to go. Are people hiking in their dress shoes?

michaeljc70
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by michaeljc70 » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:30 pm

I won't spend more than $100-$125 on dress shoes. The soles tend to wear odd because of the way I walk. Re-soling is expensive. It is also common for me to scrape the shoe on something over time (office chair, curb, stair). Of course, you can have them refinished, but also very expensive. Obviously people need to do whatever they want, but I think they are fooling themselves thinking they are saving money with expensive shoes. It is like saying you are saving money buying a Mercedes over some other car. You buy it because you like and want it and the material quality (not necessarily overall quality)/design is better.

If you keep an eye out and don't buy complete junk, 95% of people would not know the difference between $100 pair and $300 pair when you are wearing the shoes.

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hand
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by hand » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:37 pm

youdiditr2 wrote:Bought 2 pairs of Allen Edmonds shoes for around $200 to $300 each and after wearing them for about 150 days a year for 3 years, both shoes either up with a hole on the bottom of the shoes.

Guess it doesn't matter how expensive the shoes are and how long they last if you wear them over 150 days a year, at least that's what my workers told me when I told them these shoes sucked.
Not sure this is a fair criticism; almost like dismissing a car because the tires wore out. Shoe soles are wear items and 450 days of wear seems reasonable especially if you are getting leather soles wet, wearing multiple days in a row or otherwise abusing them.


The good news is that instead of throwing out these higher quality shoes, for ~$100 you can have them resoled or recrafted and get the benefit of another couple years of wear with the same good looking, high quality (and now broken in) uppers.

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simplesimon
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by simplesimon » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:40 pm

I think we should introduce pictures to this thread. I would start, but I'm not wearing them today as it was 10 degrees F this morning.

corysold
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by corysold » Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:04 pm

You don't have to spend $300+ on good shoes. Look on shoebank.com. It is Allen Edmonds "seconds" site. Many shoes are well under $300 and typically have a small cosmetic blemish that doesn't impact the shoe at all. You can return them if you find the blemish larger than you'd hope.

They also run twice yearly sales. Usually something around Memorial Day and a bigger sale end of October. You should be able to find something for $150-$250 depending on the style.

Generally, more expensive shoes are made better. Better leather, better structure, better wear, etc. Not always, but usually. As others have mentioned, when the soles wear out on better shoes, you can have them replaced. No reason a good pair of AE shoes shouldn't last a decade or more. Whether you want them that long is another story.

But a pair of black cap toes (Park Avenues) and a pair of brown/burgundy that is a bit more casual (McAlister, Strand, etc.) will go a long way in any wardrobe.

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by ponyboy » Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:18 pm

Typically the word men and $300+ shoe do not belong in the same sentence.

I understand the fact that a lot of people are forced to dress up to go to work. I never understood the people who took it upon themselves to wear slippery leather wooden shoes unless they had to. I guess if you hate traction then go for it.

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by corysold » Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:30 pm

ponyboy wrote:Typically the word men and $300+ shoe do not belong in the same sentence.

I understand the fact that a lot of people are forced to dress up to go to work. I never understood the people who took it upon themselves to wear slippery leather wooden shoes unless they had to. I guess if you hate traction then go for it.
Most Allen Edmonds shoes come with a variety of sole options, so leather isn't the only choice. They have at least two rubber options I'm aware of.

And I'm not sure why "men" and "$300 shoes" can't go together. They are clearly a superior product, so for someone who has to wear them daily, why wouldn't you buy something of better quality.

An old adage is not to skimp on what goes between you and the Earth. Shoes, tires, mattress, etc.

poker27
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by poker27 » Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:51 pm

I probably own 7 or so pairs of Allen Edmonds, and a few other italian shoes. It would be much less expensive to buy 2 pairs of $100 shoes each month. I buy 'nice' shoes becuase they look 1000x better. I also like the sound of leather on marble when I walk :)

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by stoptothink » Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:55 pm

poker27 wrote:I probably own 7 or so pairs of Allen Edmonds, and a few other italian shoes. It would be much less expensive to buy 2 pairs of $100 shoes each month. I buy 'nice' shoes becuase they look 1000x better. I also like the sound of leather on marble when I walk :)
Have to respect someone who is honest and tells it like it is.

opus360
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by opus360 » Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:58 pm

I had Allen Edmonds for 20 years. Great shoes.

Brooks Brothers makes some great shoes as well.

Does anyone know what is "Allen Edmonds for Brooks Brothers" shoes? Any difference between that and the regular BB and AE shoes?

Also, would the Peal shoes and cordovan at BB be worth extra cost?

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by nyknicks2544 » Thu Dec 15, 2016 2:11 pm

As others have said buy Allen Edmonds and use their recrafting services when the soles wear out. The shoes you get back after the recrafting look brand new. I have 5 pairs I have built up over the years and couldn't be happier with the purchases. Make sure to rotate them daily, use shoe trees and polish.

Just wait for sales if you're concerned about the price. Can get them on sale for ~$250-$300. If this is still out of your price range buy "seconds" which are shoes that just have slight factory defects. While I haven't purchased these reviews indicate it is difficult to even tell the difference and they are still eligible for recrafting.

Pacman
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by Pacman » Thu Dec 15, 2016 2:17 pm

If you go with expensive shoes with leather soles, my one tip is to never wear them in rain or snow and they will last a lot longer. It does get a bit annoying however to maintain 'backup shoes' at work and in the car.

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by larklea » Fri Dec 16, 2016 8:16 am

I have a pair of Footjoy dress shoes that I bought in 1987 for maybe $180, which was a LOT of money for me at that time. They still look great, maybe a tad out of style. Other than that, I don't spend that much and they don't last that long.

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by killjoy2012 » Fri Dec 16, 2016 8:49 am

I'm business casual everyday for work & have always purchased $75-100 dress shoes. While I make enough to afford/justify a $300+ pair of shoes, I just don't see them as being all that practical or worthwhile. Maybe I'm off-base, but:

- Most of the expensive shoes I've seen generally have flat wooden soles that are terrible for traction.
- If I have $300+ shoes, now I need to spend that much more time taking care of them - cleaning, polishing, etc. Whereas I can abuse cheap shoes and, when needed, wipe them right off quickly with paper towel and water. Polish is rarity.
- Living in the Midwest with snowy/salt-slushy winters, you want me to wear these expensive shoes through all of that? Or do you do the old school rubber booties over them, which to me seems like the ultimate PITA & aging yourself.

I could maybe see having a nice pair of shoes for the once a year night out or something. I just don't see the practicality for everyday use. It's kinda like having a new Corvette for weekend fun vs. trying to daily drive it year-round.

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hand
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by hand » Fri Dec 16, 2016 9:18 am

opus360 wrote: Also, would the Peal shoes and cordovan at BB be worth extra cost?
I'm a huge fan of shell cordovan as it wears like iron, keeps a shine and requires minimal care and polishing vs. more traditional leather.
~$300 premium for cordovan is likely not "worth it" for many, but for a lifetime purchase, not really that much of a premium assuming you can afford it...

It really gets down to whether you want to spend as little as possible today to get the job done (definitely not shell cordovan) or whether shoes are something you want to invest in for long term quality, ease of maintenance and good looks.

As mentioned elsewhere, 2 or 3 pairs of quality shoes (black, brown, cordovan colored) with the occasional resoling, could easily last you most of your working life. In the whole scheme of things, the "premium" for quality is minimal to non-existent (given longer life and better looks), and the additional premium for shell cordovan is negligible.

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by LawyersGunsAndMoney » Fri Dec 16, 2016 9:27 am

The biggest benefits are longevity and appearance. A well-made pair of oxford/cap-toe dress shoes can be resoled many times and will last for years with moderate care.

I can second the fact that Alden shoes, while highly expensive, will give you 10 years of wear with a bit of care and resoling.

Grab one pair of cedar shoe trees and a bunch of the cheap plastic pairs. Use the cedar trees for the shoes that you wore that day (cedar will pull moisture out of the shoe) and the plastic ones on the rest of your collection.

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by Dulocracy » Fri Dec 16, 2016 9:57 am

I prefer shoes on the low end of the high end shoes. Florsheim and Bostonian both have excellent options in the $75-125 range. My shoes typically last 3 years with daily wear and occasional shining (I am not as good at doing this as I should be).

I find that no matter the cost, I am rough on shoes, and I am in a position wherein having scuffed shoes is not an option. (I am a partner in a law firm with a lot of client meetings and court appearances).
I'm not a financial professional. Post is info only & not legal advice. No attorney-client relationship exists with reader. Scrutinize my ideas as if you spoke with a guy at a bar. I may be wrong.

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by midareff » Fri Dec 16, 2016 9:59 am

Always wore all leather better shoes and fixed heels and soles as they wore out. Couple of years for a sole replacement and the shoe was generally good for 2 to 3 soles before the body was in need of replacing. Retired now and you can't get me into a leather soled shoe anymore. Skechers with Memory Foam inserts and toss them when they get scuffed up too bad is the MO now.

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by Bogle826 » Fri Dec 16, 2016 10:05 am

While quality dress shoes are more expensive than the Aldo and Cole Haans of the world, they don’t have to obliterate a budget. Many people have alluded to AE seconds, which is typically the most common path for guys who want a better shoe for a slightly higher price. AE typically has two fairly popular semi-annual sales, which offer staples such as single stitched captoes and punched wingtips at a very reasonable price ($199ish).

Alden is a good brand also, but mainly known for its highly coveted exotic shell cordovan. In my opinion, the value proposition for its leather shoes is not that good ($500+ for something that is comparable to AE). However, Alden’s shell cordovan is some of the best in the market. Shell is damn tough and it looks great with minimal upkeep. It’s probably my favorite later of all time. The leather tends to have a slightly different characteristic as well - calf leather “creases”, while shell “rolls”. The most popular shoe for Alden is the Color 8 long wingtips.
After the $199 to $299 ballpark for leather shoes, the value proposition tends to diminish.

If you really want to treat yourself, look into Edward Green. The value proposition is probably not there as compared to $200 goodyear-welt shoes, but the hand burnishing and quality of the leather is amazing.


Another point - quality shoes look better as it ages, while cheap shoes don't.

corysold
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by corysold » Fri Dec 16, 2016 10:20 am

A lot depends on what you want your shoes to do for you.

If you work in a business casual office where a sport coat makes you stand out and half the office can't match colors correctly, then any pair of dress shoes will work.

But there are offices where what is on your feet matters and people in authority can identify your shoe. Whether you may want to work for such a company is another topic, but the extra $100-200 on a pair of shoes will go a long way.

A friend was told after interviews he was hired because of his shoes. A few candidates were similar, but his wardrobe/shoes stuck out. Again, maybe you don't want to work at a place where that matters, but there are plenty of places it does.

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by tim1999 » Fri Dec 16, 2016 10:46 am

I buy Cole Haan on sale, they don't look like old man shoes and hold up good. I had a good pair of Ecco shoes that were still going strong after being worn weekly for 11 years but the rubber sole was cracking so they hit the trash can.

Some people in the office wear cheapo $50 store-brand out of style shoes and it is very noticeable. You know, the kind with squared off toeboxes and waxy finishes. None of these people are in any position of authority.

We have a lot of transplants from Texas in our office. I've noticed they all wear very stylish high end shoes in impeccable condition.

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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by scooterdog » Fri Dec 16, 2016 6:00 pm

I still have my first pair of Allen Edmonds, a pair of black wingtips, from my graduate school days, 25 years ago. :shock:

They've been 'recrafted' (as mentioned before) once, and with a heel tap (I tend to drag my heels) they are still in fantastic shape. Wore them to work only yesterday. IIRC they were a bit over $200 on sale at Nordstrom when I got them.

They are joined by two additional pair of AE's, and a pair of 'To Boot New York' shoes that were something like $350 at Nordstrom (on sale as well).

Over the years have worn Ecco, Rockports, Bostonian, Florsheim... and ended up trashing them all after a year or two, and these I didn't wear everyday either (best practice is to wear them on alternating days, and use a shoe tree to keep them dry). The other shoes were not re-sole-able (Ecco and Rockports) and the others were not worthwhile.

The Allen Edmonds and the To Boot ones, though, have lasted so many years other than my running ASICS and a set of hiking boots I'm set for footwear.

sk.dolcevita
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by sk.dolcevita » Fri Dec 16, 2016 6:35 pm

Another vote for Allen Edmonds.

I have three pairs (black, burgundy and brown) that I bought 6 years ago and I would not be surprised if I am good for my remaining professional life (~15 years) with perhaps one resoling down the road. They need minimal care and do wonders if you want to project a professional good-shoes look for about $200-$300. And, yes, I have received compliments for my shoes several times by people who seem to notice such things.

If you need and can have only one pair of professional looking dress shoes that are a workhorse, go for Allen Edmonds Park Avenue. They will never go out of style.

silvercertificate
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by silvercertificate » Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:35 pm

Another vote for Allen Edmonds.

For me, they are so much more comfortable than other brands. They can be purchased gently used or as seconds for a significant discount. I love mine and have never paid retail.

pejp
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by pejp » Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:31 pm

Allen Edmonds are good quality, but the they have the typical clunky american design. You've got to go British when buying dress shoes...

Church
Loakes
Grenson
Cheaney
Barker

And yes, in general, you get what you pay for. Obviously on a site like this you'll find people trying to convince you that a $75 pair of shoes will last just as long and look just as good, but it's nonsense. Just look around your average office to see that most Men have zero idea when it comes to shoes. A high quality pair of shoes will run $250+, but they can last a lifetime if looked after correctly. Never go cheap on shoes.

edge
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Location: Great Falls VA

Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by edge » Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:39 pm

The Allen Edmonds 'Independence Collection' is more sleek and elegant than many of the British shoes. To be clear, the trade off is a durability penalty.

These shoes also come with a very comfortable lambskin lining and extremely high quality calf.
pejp wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:31 pm
Allen Edmonds are good quality, but the they have the typical clunky american design. You've got to go British when buying dress shoes...

Church
Loakes
Grenson
Cheaney
Barker

And yes, in general, you get what you pay for. Obviously on a site like this you'll find people trying to convince you that a $75 pair of shoes will last just as long and look just as good, but it's nonsense. Just look around your average office to see that most Men have zero idea when it comes to shoes. A high quality pair of shoes will run $250+, but they can last a lifetime if looked after correctly. Never go cheap on shoes.

tesuzuki2002
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by tesuzuki2002 » Thu Sep 13, 2018 4:49 pm

You all wear some real fancy shoes!!

golfCaddy
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by golfCaddy » Thu Sep 13, 2018 5:29 pm

pejp wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:31 pm
Allen Edmonds are good quality, but the they have the typical clunky american design. You've got to go British when buying dress shoes...

Church
Loakes
Grenson
Cheaney
Barker

And yes, in general, you get what you pay for. Obviously on a site like this you'll find people trying to convince you that a $75 pair of shoes will last just as long and look just as good, but it's nonsense. Just look around your average office to see that most Men have zero idea when it comes to shoes. A high quality pair of shoes will run $250+, but they can last a lifetime if looked after correctly. Never go cheap on shoes.
I won't claim a cheap pair of shoes looks just as good, but there's no way buying expensive shoes saves money. Some of those brands are $600/pair and for that, I could buy eight cheap pairs of shoes. While the uppers might theoretically last forever, the heels and soles won't. The recrafting process can run $150+, more than the cost of buying a new pair of cheaper shoes.

Bacchus01
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by Bacchus01 » Thu Sep 13, 2018 6:07 pm

Driver wrote:
Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:14 am
I bought a pair of Black Allen Edmonds for around $300 around 8 years ago. I just had them resoled this year. The heels have been replaced twice. Before the Allen Edmonds I'd spend around $100 per year for Black Dress shoes. I got my moneys worth. They're much more comfortable than $100 ones I'd used to buy. I do take care of them though. I always use a shoe tree and polish them once in awhile.
Resoling and new heels were free?

InvisibleAerobar
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by InvisibleAerobar » Thu Sep 13, 2018 7:18 pm

golfCaddy wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 5:29 pm
pejp wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:31 pm
Allen Edmonds are good quality, but the they have the typical clunky american design. You've got to go British when buying dress shoes...

Church
Loakes
Grenson
Cheaney
Barker

And yes, in general, you get what you pay for. Obviously on a site like this you'll find people trying to convince you that a $75 pair of shoes will last just as long and look just as good, but it's nonsense. Just look around your average office to see that most Men have zero idea when it comes to shoes. A high quality pair of shoes will run $250+, but they can last a lifetime if looked after correctly. Never go cheap on shoes.
I won't claim a cheap pair of shoes looks just as good, but there's no way buying expensive shoes saves money. Some of those brands are $600/pair and for that, I could buy eight cheap pairs of shoes. While the uppers might theoretically last forever, the heels and soles won't. The recrafting process can run $150+, more than the cost of buying a new pair of cheaper shoes.
Allen Edmonds, especially when purchasing seconds or on discount, is an economical choice. Take the perennial favorite the Park Ave (though personally I prefer the slightly more ornate Fifth Ave). This shoe may be purchased for ~$225 new. Eight years later, one spends another $150 for a recraft. The cost is ~$30 amortized for the first go, and $20 amortized for the second go. At the same time, the shoes will look proper, and even the rubber-soled shoes will look better than most leather-soled shoes.

Or one could spend $50 on some pair of shoes that just looks "off" and doesn't fit well. One thing about AE is that their sizing is great, with many models available from width A to width EE.

AE is therefore the Lexus ES350 of shoes. An upscale, dependable product that represents a good value. Once one goes up to Alden or Loakes, that's when one hits diminishing returns (akin to buying a $50k vehicle). That said, one can't resole shoes ad infinitum. I believe three re-soling is the max, so a 30-yr lifespan.

Spedward
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by Spedward » Thu Sep 13, 2018 7:45 pm

I have acquired 8 pairs of Allen Edmonds over the last 15 years. All different styles and/or colors. Although no shoes last forever, having them resolved through Allen Edmonds is pretty economical - like 100 for full resole and reconditioning - after that like brand new. I have to wear professional dress all day, sometimes up to 15 hours before I can take off my shoes. And because of this comfort is very important to me. I can wear them all day long in total comfort. Cheaper shoes have never provided me with that.

About half off my Allen Edmonds where purchased on eBay in the 50-120 range depending of style/condition. Then as soon as I get them, I just take them to the Allen Edmonds story by my office - cause I am too lazy to ship on my own, and get them reconditioned.

randomguy
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Re: Benefits/longevity of more expensive ($300+) mens dress shoes?

Post by randomguy » Thu Sep 13, 2018 8:39 pm

killjoy2012 wrote:
Fri Dec 16, 2016 8:49 am

- Living in the Midwest with snowy/salt-slushy winters, you want me to wear these expensive shoes through all of that? Or do you do the old school rubber booties over them, which to me seems like the ultimate PITA & aging yourself.

You change shoes at work before going home and coming into the office. May or may not be possible depending on your job. Realistically doing this with just about any shoe will drastically extent the lifespan.
Last edited by randomguy on Thu Sep 13, 2018 8:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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