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      02-28-2007, 04:59 PM   #1
Neurorad
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Comfortable, durable mens dress shoes?

Any brand recommendations, based on personal experience?

Old pair has been resoled 4 times. New pair of the same brand not a good option, brand no longer made well (Nike bought Cole Haan, quality dropped). It's too bad, this is the best pair of shoes I've ever owned. Extremely comfortable, durable.

Allen Edmonds? Ferragamo? Bruno Magli? I'll pay big bucks if they'll last a really long time, but no way if they're built like crap.

Thanks in advance.
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      02-28-2007, 05:01 PM   #2
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      02-28-2007, 05:48 PM   #3
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I beat up my shoes very badly. I have a pair of Bruno Magli and Hugo Boss shoes that I don't wear that often. The Bruno and Hugo don't seem like durable shoes. They look nice tho.

The ones I wear everyday as my "beater" is Allen Edmonds. This is the one in black tho. Not exactly impressive design...look like normal shoes but they seem to last. Owned this pair for almost 2 years...worn them every day. Not exactly cheap...but they seem to be built to last (longer) than other brands. I have had to replace the soles already tho...but the leather and shoe construction has lasted. Invest in a pair of cedar shoe trees as well.
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      02-28-2007, 06:25 PM   #4
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      02-28-2007, 06:37 PM   #5
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Been a fan of Kenneth Cole lately. The good shoes not the Reaction brand. The shoes with Silver Technology and extremely comfy and for me are holding up very well through a lot of beatings. I wear them for everything work/casual/bar basically whatever.
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      02-28-2007, 07:05 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spacedogg View Post
I beat up my shoes very badly. I have a pair of Bruno Magli and Hugo Boss shoes that I don't wear that often. The Bruno and Hugo don't seem like durable shoes. They look nice tho.

The ones I wear everyday as my "beater" is Allen Edmonds. This is the one in black tho. Not exactly impressive design...look like normal shoes but they seem to last. Owned this pair for almost 2 years...worn them every day. Not exactly cheap...but they seem to be built to last (longer) than other brands. I have had to replace the soles already tho...but the leather and shoe construction has lasted. Invest in a pair of cedar shoe trees as well.
You've sold me on Allen Edmonds. I'll update this thread in 5 years (that's about how long my Cole Haan City loafers have held up).

I use shoe trees in my nicer pairs of dress shoes, the ones that sit in the closet and get worn with suits. One of them is a pair of Cole Haan's that look almost exactly like that AE Ashton you linked. I'm looking for a loafer (without the ugly tassels), probably the AE Canelli or the Hanover.

Thanks again.
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      02-28-2007, 07:49 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darkcloud View Post
Been a fan of Kenneth Cole lately. The good shoes not the Reaction brand. The shoes with Silver Technology and extremely comfy and for me are holding up very well through a lot of beatings. I wear them for everything work/casual/bar basically whatever.
I always wear Kenneth Cole. They make good shoes.
I think Alfani shoes are pretty decent.
If you want really comfortable shoes you should check out Dockers or that one brand that starts with an R (forgot wut it was- rocker?? )
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      02-28-2007, 08:19 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spacedogg View Post
I beat up my shoes very badly. I have a pair of Bruno Magli and Hugo Boss shoes that I don't wear that often. The Bruno and Hugo don't seem like durable shoes. They look nice tho.

The ones I wear everyday as my "beater" is Allen Edmonds. This is the one in black tho. Not exactly impressive design...look like normal shoes but they seem to last. Owned this pair for almost 2 years...worn them every day. Not exactly cheap...but they seem to be built to last (longer) than other brands. I have had to replace the soles already tho...but the leather and shoe construction has lasted. Invest in a pair of cedar shoe trees as well.
I have a pair exactly like those in the link (it's my favorite of my AE's). Allen Edmunds are the most comfortable and well made dress shoes I've owned, but I like the old-style craftsmenship of leather soles, leather insoles, etc... I like a pair you have to break-in. Newer brands (like Kenneth Cole) and Euro brands (like Ecco) just don't seem as well made to me.
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      02-28-2007, 08:58 PM   #9
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aldo's good enough for me
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      02-28-2007, 09:01 PM   #10
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Kenneth Cole, Ferragamo, Prada
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      02-28-2007, 09:02 PM   #11
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i am a waiter so at my job i do alot of walking and shoes get beat. i am also required to wear dress shoes. when i started i bought a pair of bostonians and love them. they last me about 6 month which was good compared to what other guys working there got out of theirs. they look good and are really durable.
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      02-28-2007, 09:08 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boyce'06 330i View Post
I have a pair exactly like those in the link (it's my favorite of my AE's). Allen Edmunds are the most comfortable and well made dress shoes I've owned, but I like the old-style craftsmenship of leather soles, leather insoles, etc... I like a pair you have to break-in. Newer brands (like Kenneth Cole) and Euro brands (like Ecco) just don't seem as well made to me.
Yeah I owned a pair of Ecco's. They lasted me 8 months...and then the top half of the shoe started to seperate from the sole (it looked like it was just glued on). Again great looking shoe...but not so durable.

With regards to the Allen Edmunds I linked to...they are rubber soled. So resoling them is a pain in the butt...might be better to get something leather soled and stick on rubber grips. I had to take mine in a few months ago because the heel of my shoe was starting to wear. The repair guy had to recut the rubber sole flat and then glue on another rubber sole.
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      02-28-2007, 09:50 PM   #13
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      03-01-2007, 08:18 AM   #14
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Skechers are very comfy shoes... to Skechers
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      03-01-2007, 09:45 AM   #15
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Ok heres the lowdown.

All the mainstream crap you find in the main stores suck. They have cheap corrected grain leather that doesn't polish well, maintain shape, or conform to your feet. They have low wearing rubber soles and the stitching and glued on soles are just rediculously put together. Don't waste your money because you will just be spending it again in a year.

You want either real calf leather uppers, leather or a quality rubber or danite sole (for rain) that is stiched by either using Goodyear Welting or a rapid/blake construction, a timeless last that will lend to years of wear, and a quality polishing process to make the exterior have depth.

You don't have to spend a fortune, even though they may sell for many hundred retail. There are lots of discounters and many can be found on ebay for hundreds less. Hell even sierratradingpost has lots of allen edmonds and other high end shoes for decent prices.


Here are some brands for you to look for:

Midrange:
Allen Edmonds & Alden - Have both rubber and leather soled shoes and use a high quality Goodyear welted sole. Their shoes are not very stylish but are well made. You can often find them discounted for $150 and sometimes less.

Romano Martegani - Good Italian company with stylish shoes and a Rapid/Blake contruction

Santoni

Moreschi - Mid-range line of shoes

A. Testoni

Sutor Mantellasi

Ferragamo Tramezza - Ferragamo's good line of shoes. They may or may not be found in your stores but they are much better made than their normal line.

Barker Black / Crockett & Jones / Trickers / Cheaney - High quality British shoe makers. Crockett & Jones is one of my favorite shoe makers. They also make shoes for Ralph Lauren's high end lines.

Peale / Alfred Sargent



High End:

John Lobb - Premier English shoe maker.
Edward Green - Def one of the best, make shoes for RLPL
Berluti
Kiton
J.M Weston

lots of others I didn't mention but these are some of the bigger names. If you don't care about cutting edge style, like many of the Italian & British shoes Alden or Allen Edmonds may make a good fit. They have lots of widths, good contruction and both even offer Shell Cordovan which is a type of leather that is nearly indestructible.
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      03-01-2007, 10:45 AM   #16
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Good post Neil.

For something good that won't break the bank, I agree with Allen Edmonds. I also like Cole Haan, and have never had an issue with the 2 pairs I own.

Testoni are great shoes as well.

I want to get a pair of Barker Black's next.
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      03-01-2007, 11:45 AM   #17
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Thanks to everyone, esp. Neil. I've never heard of most of those shoemakers, but I love to wear good shoes. I appreciate everything that's well-made.

Seems I'd have to do some travelling to get into a pair of really good shoes, made by an exclusive shoemaker. Not a good option for me. As there aren't any great stores in the area here, either, I'll most probably go with a brand that's widely available.

Allen Edmonds it is.
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      03-01-2007, 11:49 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darkcloud View Post
Been a fan of Kenneth Cole lately. The good shoes not the Reaction brand. The shoes with Silver Technology and extremely comfy and for me are holding up very well through a lot of beatings. I wear them for everything work/casual/bar basically whatever.


i could not agree more. I absolutely love my Kenneth Cole's and i wear them every day.


just remember to polish them every 2 weeks and they will always look new :rocks:
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      03-01-2007, 12:15 PM   #19
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How about Bally ?
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      03-01-2007, 01:20 PM   #20
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Bally disappeared off the radar for several years. About 5 years ago, I looked intensely for Bally shoes on the internet - absolutely nothing. I'm guessing someone bought the company and restarted the shoe line. Their shoes used to be very good (I forget which was better, Italian or Swiss, but my dad used to say one was far superior to the other).
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      03-01-2007, 01:24 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neurorad View Post
Thanks to everyone, esp. Neil. I've never heard of most of those shoemakers, but I love to wear good shoes. I appreciate everything that's well-made.

Seems I'd have to do some travelling to get into a pair of really good shoes, made by an exclusive shoemaker. Not a good option for me. As there aren't any great stores in the area here, either, I'll most probably go with a brand that's widely available.

Allen Edmonds it is.
Good choice for a durable well rounded shoe. AE is also good because you can send them your shoes and they will refinish them for you whenever you need to or attach new soles, etc.

Next time you hit a big city make sure to look for some of the brands mentioned. A good thing to do is try on a lot of makers in the big name stores in the cities just to get your sizing down and then look for deals online. Once you find a last you like in a specific shoe, all the shoes made from that last should be the same size. plal.com offers great deals on Crockett & Jones shoes and every year almost all the big stores have huge markdowns a couple times. I remember people were picking up $1000 Edward Green shoes at polo.com for $500 and less.
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      03-01-2007, 01:44 PM   #22
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I've found a decent local shoe repair shop (after a few tries), but sending back to the manufacturer would be optimum.

Neil, where do you live in CT? I grew up in Fairfield County.
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