A couple of weeks ago I wrote about my interest in trying out the $255, J.Crew Gifford Double Monk Strap shoes.  I ended up pulling the trigger and ordering them as they are available online only.  Purchasing these shoes has made me realize two things; 1) I don’t like J.Crew dress shoes, and 2) I just shouldn’t order shoes online unless I already have a pair of the exact same thing, and I’m replacing them or buying in another color.  (Pardon me while I catch my breath.)

As always, ordering from jcrew.com was easy.  I used a code for free shipping.  The shoes arrived within a week.  I ordered my regular 9 1/2 (a size which has worked for me with previously purchased J.Crew casual and rubber soled dress shoes.)  At first glance the shoes looked pretty nice.  Unbuckling them was a bit of a challenge, but I assumed that was because they were new and still stiff.  The problem came when I tried to get them on.  I got my feet into them, but felt like they were having the life squeezed out of them.  These were probably one of the top 5 least comfortable shoes I’d ever put on.  Now, don’t get me wrong – I will give a pair of shoes the benefit of the doubt.  I know it takes a few wears to break in a pair of shoes, but this was ridiculous.  Somebody completely screwed up the sizing.

After removing them I inspected the stitching and construction.  They are, in fact Made in Italy.  The construction isn’t bad – solid on the bottom, big welt, even stitching.  But I sent them back because they just didn’t fit right.  And the truth is I really didn’t need another pair of dark brown shoes anyway.  But for something different, they were worth a try.  If I find that I really need and want a new pair of shoes, and I really want to try a pair of double monks, then I will probably order the pair from Howard Yount that I featured in my Summer Suit post.  They’re a lighter brown – something that I do not have in my wardrobe.

But until then, I’m good.  Needless to say, I will not be ordering any more J.Crew dress shoes.

~Sam

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