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Comfort: how important is it, really?

I wish Trickers made these. In fact they’re from French brand Adieu, which is fine and all that, it’s just my experience with Adieu shoes has occasionally been less than premium. I find them slim, somewhat constricting. Technically I’m a 9.5-10. But the last pair I bought was an 11.

This is almost certainly an issue with my extremities rather than the brand itself. But it might lead you to wonder why I bother at all. Why continue to buy shoes built around a last incompatible with your feet? And this is of course where things get dumb. I like their styles. I’m a victim. On balance, I find a modish, refreshed version of a classic, more appealing than the classic itself. And as slavish as that makes me, I’m prepared to suck up minor inconveniences – like comfort. So now I’m eyeballing these freaky looking olive chukkas.

Going back to my Trickers comment at the outset: these shoes are Blake stitched rather than Goodyear welted. Don’t know the difference? Head here for a lesson in shoemanship. But simply put, proper welted shoes are thicker, more robust and built for our inclement climate. They’re Trickers’ bread and butter. While Blake stitched shoes are more flexible, less heavy are arguably better suited to Italian sunshine. Both approaches are far superior to cheap cemented shoes, which you can’t even have resoled. But for UK wear, I prefer welted. Theoretically, as they don’t require so many individual bits, and are produced by machine rather than by hand, Blake shoes should be cheaper. Yet these Adieu numbers clock in at just under £450. Almost enough for bespoke Trickers.

But then, with these, style is all. And with that chunky crepe sole swelling beyond the confines of the upper, they’re certainly a looker. Beautiful suede, the exact colour of demonic puke, black leather piping and a silhouette that would kill beneath some cuffed cotton pants, I have big designs on these. Comfort’s overrated anyway.

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