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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I received my Brooks Brothers/Allen Edmonds Walnut Strands, and after polishing noticed some strange things that I have not noticed on my other Allen Edmonds. There is some discoloration, one of the eyelets has a small loose piece of leather, and one of the shoes has some visible holes on the toe by the welt. These don't seem like first-quality shoes to me.

Am I correct in thinking there's something wrong with these shoes? Should I exchange them? Will Brooks Brothers let me return a shoe I have polished (but not worn other than 5 minutes on carpet).

Holes:


Discoloration:


Eyelet Damage:


Thank you all for your help!
 

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The discolouration *might* disappear over time and *could* be a non-issue, but the ruined eyelet and that bizarre second set of holes (a botched first attempt at welt stitching I assume) makes for an instant return.

Having never dealt with Brooks Brothers I have no idea what their response might be, but it's as clear as day that those shoes should never have been allowed to leave the factory floor.
 

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The discolouration *might* disappear over time and *could* be a non-issue, but the ruined eyelet and that bizarre second set of holes (a botched first attempt at welt stitching I assume) makes for an instant return.

Having never dealt with Brooks Brothers I have no idea what their response might be, but it's as clear as day that those shoes should never have been allowed to leave the factory floor.
Absolutely blows me away that these made there way to a customer! I bet we would be hard pressed to find anyone that would even accept these as seconds. Have no fear though as Brooks has a very customer friendly return policy. You should have no issues getting those returned or exchanged if you were willing to give them another shot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks everyone! I figured something was wrong when I saw those holes.

Smmrfld, have you had problems with Allen Edmonds shoes? I've bought a few pairs from them recently and haven't had a single complaint.
 

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Thanks everyone! I figured something was wrong when I saw those holes.

Smmrfld, have you had problems with Allen Edmonds shoes? I've bought a few pairs from them recently and haven't had a single complaint.
Member smmrfld is well able to speak for himself.

But in reading this I think it's fair to note that a significant majority of observations here about AE recently have been similar to yours. The nature of a forum is often to emphasize what is noteworthy, and problems will garner the most attention. So, even if common, they must be far from universal. Speaking for myself, I have no interest in them, but I can understand those who do.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
But in reading this I think it's fair to note that a significant majority of observations here about AE recently have been similar to yours. The nature of a forum is often to emphasize what is noteworthy, and problems will garner the most attention. So, even if common, they must be far from universal. Speaking for myself, I have no interest in them, but I can understand those do.
Flanderian,

That makes sense. I wouldn't have posted anything if my shoes had no problems.

I want to make sure I understand your last sentence correctly. Are you saying that you have no interest in Allen Edmonds shoes, as I suspect? Or are you saying that you have no interest in the reported problems with AE shoes that garner so much interest on these forums?

Thanks again everyone for all your help. I will be sending these back and exchanging them. Hopefully I'll get a decent pair. If not, I guess I'll have to restart my hunt for a pair of decent walnut shoes :-(
 

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Flanderian,

That makes sense. I wouldn't have posted anything if my shoes had no problems.

I want to make sure I understand your last sentence correctly. Are you saying that you have no interest in Allen Edmonds shoes, as I suspect? Or are you saying that you have no interest in the reported problems with AE shoes that garner so much interest on these forums?

Thanks again everyone for all your help. I will be sending these back and exchanging them. Hopefully I'll get a decent pair. If not, I guess I'll have to restart my hunt for a pair of decent walnut shoes :-(
I have no interest in purchasing AE shoes. I've found that I can purchase better quality for less from a variety of English makes, and I suspect those made elsewhere as well. It helps that I'm a pretty average 11D, not that hard to fit, and a typical English last suits me rather well.
You're very welcome! :beer:
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I've found that I can purchase better quality for less from a variety of English makes, and I suspect those made elsewhere as well.
Flanderian,

I'd love to hear some of your recommendations for other shoe makers. Allen Edmonds were my first decent shoe purchase, chosen based on recommendations here (and elsewhere) and the fact that I could get a brand new pair for under $200. I'm a shoe newbie...a shoe-bie, if you will ;).

Are there any other nice shoes that can be found new for under $300? I don't mind waiting, and I'm good at hunting for deals, but I'm not sure what to look for. The only English shoe makers I've heard about are Church's, Alden, and Crockett & Jones, but I haven't had much luck finding an affordable pair (new or used) here in the states. Maybe 11 1/2 E (my size, at least in the AE shoes I've worn) is less common than 11D, but I would think it's still a somewhat common size.

Thanks again. I've learned a lot reading this forum, and now I'm learning even more posting and getting helpful input from all of you!
 

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Flanderian,

I'd love to hear some of your recommendations for other shoe makers. Allen Edmonds were my first decent shoe purchase, chosen based on recommendations here (and elsewhere) and the fact that I could get a brand new pair for under $200. I'm a shoe newbie...a shoe-bie, if you will ;).

Are there any other nice shoes that can be found new for under $300? I don't mind waiting, and I'm good at hunting for deals, but I'm not sure what to look for. The only English shoe makers I've heard about are Church's, Alden, and Crockett & Jones, but I haven't had much luck finding an affordable pair (new or used) here in the states. Maybe 11 1/2 E (my size, at least in the AE shoes I've worn) is less common than 11D, but I would think it's still a somewhat common size.

Thanks again. I've learned a lot reading this forum, and now I'm learning even more posting and getting helpful input from all of you!
When I compared the English shoes to AE, I was comparing full retail. But, yes, there are very nice English shoes that can be had for a little less, or slightly more than $300.

But understand this, most English shoes are only made in one or two widths, often medium and wide, which compare roughly to an American D and E width. So if you have different needs, purchasing can be a little more problematic. Also, the best selection and values are available via mail order, so in effect, you have a transatlantic try-on, but once you get your size and last down, it's really very simple and convenient. Shipping costs aren't awful, and customs duties only apply to items costing more than $800.

Likely my favorite English value brand is Sanders and Sanders. High quality shoes at a reasonable price. Cheaney and Barker are other makes that can be found for around that number. And Adrian Herring of Herring Shoes has various English makers make up for his firm at attractive prices.

This shoe is from Sanders' top of the line Diplomat collection. Price as of today ex-VAT (You don't pay VAT because you're not in the E.U.) is roughly $304.

Some vendors of English shoes you may wish to consider -

https://www.herringshoes.co.uk/

https://www.bradshawandlloyd.com/

https://www.sanders-uk.com/shop

https://www.pediwear.co.uk/
 

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For lower spec made Crockett and Jones [worse than benchgrade] -
https://www.shipton.com/
I know what you're trying to say, but I believe this to be a poor choice of words.

To say they are "worse than" suggests some lack of quality. I don't find that to be the case. Nor are the a "lower spec" though they are lower in price.

The fit and finish as well as the quality of C&J mainline shoes are every bit as good as the hand grade shoes.

They are simply different shoes. Built on different lasts (some) the colors offered are different and hand burnished.

To imply that the mainline shoes are somehow inferior to the handgrades, though, misses the point.
 

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I know what you're trying to say, but I believe this to be a poor choice of words.

To say they are "worse than" suggests some lack of quality. I don't find that to be the case. Nor are the a "lower spec" though they are lower in price.

The fit and finish as well as the quality of C&J mainline shoes are every bit as good as the hand grade shoes.

To imply that the mainline shoes are somehow inferior to the handgrades, though, misses the point.
Wrong on every count.

1. Crockett and Jones manufacture for Shipton. Shipton's models are NOT made to benchgrade standards. For example they are not fully leather lined. Crockett BG and HGs are.

2. The finish and quality of Crockett Benchgrade is NOT as good as HG's. Fit is completely subjective and person dependent.

a] HG's use closed channeled roles
b] HG's use leather from slightly younger animals
c] HG's have full insocks

I own several pairs...I know this...
 

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Wrong on every count.

1. Crockett and Jones manufacture for Shipton. Shipton's models are NOT made to benchgrade standards. For example they are not fully leather lined. Crockett BG and HGs are.

2. The finish and quality of Crockett Benchgrade is NOT as good as HG's. Fit is completely subjective and person dependent.

a] HG's use closed channeled roles
b] HG's use leather from slightly younger animals
c] HG's have full insocks

I own several pairs...I know this...
I'm not referring to shoes made for other labels. I'm referring to Crockett & Jones labeled shoes.

They are different shoes and made differently but to say that the mainline shoes are inferior in any way compared to the handgrades is quite the stretch. There is certainly more hand work and hand finishing in the latter which accounts, I'm sure, for the price differential.

There is not, however, some deficit in quality one v. The other.

And I own several pair as well.....
 

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They are different shoes and made differently but to say that the mainline shoes are inferior in any way compared to the handgrades is quite the stretch. There is certainly more hand work and hand finishing in the latter which accounts, I'm sure, for the price differential.

There is not, however, some deficit in quality one v. The other.
I don't really follow this. I think the Handgrade is a superior shoe and the mainline is an inferior shoe in some ways. I concur they are both quality shoes.
 
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