It’s happened – you need to pick out a good pair of size 17 dress shoes. You managed to put it off long enough, but the day has finally come that you need to get yourself a quality pair. While you may have skirted along with boots and sneakers so far, an event is coming up that requires you to dress in your best. You’ve decided to go with a quality pair that will last you for years, which is a good move so you don’t have to go through the process again. Here’s what to look for in a pair of size 17 dress shoes.
Since you wear size 17 shoes, don’t just throw darts at the board and hope one sticks. It will take you long enough to find a good pair so you might not be able to just go back and get another if the first ones aren’t to your liking. First, start off with the cosmetic features. We can’t tell you what you look for on that front, but once you pick that out, here’s what to do.
Step into the shoe, and make sure you use a shoe horn to avoid crushing the upper behind the heel. Some people get into the bad habit of shoving their foot into the shoe and crushing the cuff, but that takes years off of the life of your shoes.
With your foot in the shoe, take a few steps around, stand still, and kneel down, making sure that you bend your toes doing so. You should not feel any tightness around the middle of your foot. The sides of the upper that contact the joints of your toes should not be stiff, but not too roomy. They should be snug and comfortable. The tops of your toes should not grate against the sides or tops of the toe box. In addition, the cuff of the upper should not be abrading your ankles or your heel. Additionally, when you kneel down, the upper should not crush your toes. The shoes should accommodate the movement naturally.
If you can satisfy these requirements, then it’s time to look for some other features that are indicative of quality or of a high level of craftsmanship. Take a look at the stitching of the opper. Wholecuts have minimal stitching as they are made from one piece of leather; others are stitched together. Look at the stitching. If you can find double or triple stitching, you probably are looking at a really tough shoe. Single stitching is acceptable, but if that is the case, try to find a shoe that is made from a smaller number of pieces of leather or fabric. Remember, full grain and top grain leather are significantly more durable than “genuine” leather and other forms of bonded leather. Avoid these if you can.
In addition, look carefully at the sole of the shoe. Look for a genuine Goodyear welt, and if you can, get a pair of shoes that are stitched all the way from the upper through to the bottom of the sole and then back up. You can ascertain this by looking for stitching along the edge of the bottom of the sole. Finally, though you can’t tell this by looking, get a shoe with a shank if possible, as this will significantly boost the durability of the shoes.
If you can satisfy all of these requirements, then you are probably in a relatively good place and can invest in the shoes in question. Since you’re probably used to having a hard time finding size 17 dress shoes, it’s worth it to do your shopping right the first time.
Of course, if you don’t have the luxury of trying this out, you can always visit XLfeet.com, where you will find a broad collection of dress shoes and other footwear. Xl feet specializes in providing footwear for guys with larger feet and you can easily shop their website from the comfort of home which takes out a portion of the difficulty of finding large shoes. Visit their website today and contact their team at 651-797-6000 if you have any questions.