Sneakers

Feit Hand Sewn Low Sneaker Review

I've long been searching for some premium sneakers that can be resoled and a couple years ago came across the label Feit, which fit the bill. Founded by Tull Price, who also designs shoes for Rag & Bone, and his brother, Feit makes its sneakers in limited quantities. Each pair is handmade by a single craftsperson in China. As you can see below, they even sign a card with the shoe's unique number in the edition that comes included in the box. Also in box are shoe bags—one for each shoe, thankfully, because having one bag for both shoes is just so useless—a set of leather insoles, a pair of cork footbeds, and a set of cotton laces. The insoles and laces can be added to the shoes to adjust sizing. I recommend going with your normal sneaker size on these. Half sizes should go up and add the aforementioned insoles, footbeds, or both to make the sneakers more snug. In my case, I wear size US 10 in Nike and Adidas sneakers and went with a size 43 in the Feits. The cotton shoelaces are in addition to the vegetable tanned leather shoelaces that come prelaced on the the shoes. 

The welt on the sneakers is Goodyear, so you can get them resoled. You can also add a Topy or Vibram rubber halfsole, if you prefer. I'm not a huge fan of the silhouette and look of these, but the quality is undeniable and I like the idea of having a sneaker I can wear often for many years. I'll update this post with more information once I've had a chance to wear them for a month or so. In the meantime, check out my photos of the shoes below. 

Maison Martin Margiela Replica Sneaker aka GATs

I recently read this history of the German Army Trainer shoe in the Wall Street Journal and was compelled to seek out a pair of the Maison Margiela Replica sneakers. I told myself that I would wait until I found a deep discount, but I wanted to check out the shoes in person to get a sense of sizing. So, I went to the Margiela store in the city earlier this week to try some on. While I wear a US 9.5 in Nike and a 9D in Allen Edmonds, it turns out that I'm a size 8 (EU 41) in the Replicas. Most models don't seem to come in half sizes, but you can remove the insoles in the shoes to gain a half size in the shoes. This is either smart move by Margiela, which allows wears to resize the shoes—say, for wearing with or without socks—or a cop-out to avoid making half sizes. Either way, it works well enough. In a fortunate coincidence, the Margiela store also happened to have the Replicas on sale for 50% off. They were sold out of the white pairs in my size, but I was able to get a black and gray pair. 

The branding on the shoes is very minimal—the single stitch on the back and the logo patch on the tongue. Because the numbers are just embossed suede, the one on my left shoe has already disappeared. So far the shoes are quite comfortable, but long term wear will determine how I really feel about them. I took a brush to the grey suede before spraying the shoes with Apple Gardé leather protectant and now it's a little nappier than I would like. However, I think the rougher texture would come inevitably with wearing them. Anyhow, you can get a sense of the shoes from the gallery above.