Good news!  I ended up selling four of the five pair of shoes I put on eBay.  The two J.Crew pairs went first, followed by the Barney’s & Ferragamo loafers.  The Banana Republic loafers didn’t sell.  That’s ok.  I’ll just keep them, I guess.

The bad news is I ended up ordering those Florsheim Imperial Longwings and was completely disappointed in them.  First, the color was considerably darker than what I was expecting.  The photo on the website showed them as a kind of lighter, caramel brown.  But the actual color was just dark, dark brown.  Nice, but not what I wanted.  I tried them on anyway, and well they weren’t as comfortable as I’d hoped either.

No big deal.  I tend to think of big, chunky wingtips as Fall/Winter shoes anyway.  There are a lot of style blogger friends of mine who will argue that point, but personal style is a matter of personal preference, is it not? 

While I was searching the Sperry Topsider website the other day for a set of replacement laces I came across a pair of loafers (yes, another pair of loafers) that looked similar to the pair the dude was wearing in the Vespa photo in my Spring Style Inspiration post.  For a mere $80, The Sperry Navigator Venetian is everything one could need in a spring shoe.  The TAN option is light in color (but also comes in dark brown, black, navy, gray, and sand suede), it can be worn with or without socks, and knowing Sperry, it’s probably unbelievably comfortable.  I’m not pulling the trigger yet, but it’s on my radar.

Another interesting option to cross my inbox this morning was the J.Crew Gifford (Double) Monk Strap.  A number of style bloggers have been covering this style for a long time now, and I’ve been hesitant to jump on the bandwagon not because I’m defiant, but because I still can’t bring myself to spend that much money on shoes.  I know, I know – you get what you pay for, you’re paying for quality, etc.  All valid points.  And any regular reader of Crabapple knows of my issues with J.Crew footwear.  However, the Gifford leather soled series of shoes has gotten fairly good reviews, are made in Italy, and look better than much of what they have done in the past.  At $255 these shoes are not cheap, but one of the things J.Crew does very well is stand behind their products.  If something is of poor quality or fit, they will take it back, no questions asked.  At first glance, these don’t look quite so summery, but could certainly be worn with jeans or chinos as easily as with a suit or dress trousers.  And if you follow the lead of the style blogging community you can certainly pull them off sockless, and one buckle undone.

And the best thing about these and the Sperry loafers?  If you travel a lot, they’re easy to slip on and off at the airport.  Don’t be that guy holding up the line trying to undo that double knot.   More on that another time…

~Sam

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