Alden Shoes: Timeless Footwear and More for the Discerning Gentleman
World renowned Alden Shoes are meticulously crafted for the discerning man in search of the perfect shoe for the board meeting or a sophisticated night on the town. Or both. They represent the virtually lost art and tradition of custom shoemaking at its finest.
Remaining the gold standard of quality, style, wearability and comfort in men’s shoes for more than 135 years requires relentless attention to every detail from design through construction and beyond. Since Alden Shoes meticulously created their first pair in 1884, they have never wavered in their mission, explaining why it is the only original New England shoe and bootmaker remaining from the hundreds who began this unique art long ago. Still a family-owned business, Alden Shoes is staunchly carrying forward its trademark of quality, genuine-welted shoemaking, universally recognized for being exceptional in every way. How has Alden flourished in a world where low quality, low cost mass produced shoes have been the norm since the Great Depression? The answer is clear. They have never strayed from the formula this proud company was built upon from its inception. The richest-textured and deepest-colored leathers. Core components of the highest quality. An impeccable focus on excellence before and after the sale. Intelligent design. Incomparable finishing touches. Unmatched comfort. In summary: zero short cuts.
The impeccable quality of their shoes begins with their unwavering commitment to genuine welt construction, an approach that mass production shoe companies largely abandoned decades ago. When all shoes were handmade, their cost of high quality footwear was high. That meant that the ability to resole shoes as they aged was critical. By stitching welting (a strip of firm leather) to a flexible upper leather, and then stitching the sole was to that welting, a superior combination of materials was created. High quality comfortable shoes that would last and last. As the methods of constructing a welted shoe improved even further, additional benefits resulted, including superior stability, increased foot support and superior comfort. All hallmarks of today’s Alden Shoes.
The all-important upper leather of all Alden Shoes is selected from the top grades from the finest tanneries in the world. They include rich, aniline calf skins. Luxurious calf and kid suedes. Genuine shell cordovan. Many Alden Shoes are constructed from shell cordovan, the same leather old school shoemakers used in their pursuit of excellence. Using the centuries-old method of pure vegetable tannage and hand finishing, producing genuine shell cordovan today is rare. But then again, so are shoes of Alden’s quality. Those leathers are then hand-stained and polished to the classic patina that is the hallmark of the custom bootmaker's art. Each shoe features a timeless, classic pattern that translates to an undeniably refined appearance.
Another trademark of Alden Shoes are their heavy, natural leather insoles of pure vegetable tannage. Unsurpassed for breathable comfort and long wear, they assume the contours of one’s foot shape over time, ensuring a truly custom quality fit. The magic extends beneath the insole where a layer of natural cork provides additional resilience and insulation.
Each shoe boasts a full leather lining chosen from their special stock of supple glove and smooth, glazed kip linings. Each shoe also carries a tempered steel shank, precisely contoured and triple ribbed for extra strength. That shank is literally the backbone of a fine welt shoe, as it provides the proper support and shape to keep the wearer comfortable all day long. Oak tanned leather bends are cut into its outsoles for maximum control of quality. Specially treated for durable wear, the soles are then patiently burnished with carnauba waxes to a fine luster.
Besides provides the best in comfort, support, and wearability, the Goodyear-welt construction of Alden shoes is designed to allow rebuilding. However, that the process requires the utmost in skillful craftsmanship and shoemaking experience. As a result, Alden Shoes is proud to offer its unique Factory Restoration Service Kit, a program supported by a convenient, prepaid mailer. With that unique program, the shoes receive an expert rebuilding including all necessary repairs, using original materials carefully handworked to ensure the exact same comfort fit. The shoes are then refinished by hand and returned with Alden cedar shoe trees and cloth bags.
Alden Shoes also offer an array of finely constructed, high quality leather goods, including key fobs, key cases, luggage tags and business card and credit card cases. The selection of Alden belts is equally impressive.
Those fortunate enough to have discovered Alden Shoes need not worry. Its stewards have no desire to abandon their centuries-old approach to superior craftsmanship, refined appearance, unmatched comfort and unbridled customer satisfaction.