Aris Allen Men's 1941 EEE Wide Black Captoe Swing Dance Shoes
- Handmade EEE Swing Era dress shoes in the style of men's captoes from the 1941 Montgomery Wards Catalog. And when we say "handmade" we mean it. Every one of these has been individually cut and assembled by hand. These have prioritized comfort over looks - do not buy these for photo shoots - the pliable leather on these is better suited for dance shoes than dress shoes!
- We have a Triple-E dancer on staff and he designed this to be his dream shoe. He said most wide footwear is ugly and uncomfortable and for some reason are always too wide in the ankle. So he designed a shoe with a slightly pointed toe, roomy vamp, slightly snugger-than-normal ankle, and a longer tongue.
- These are made so you can wear them outside if you like - but please don't dance in parking lots and expect them to last forever. Like all our other dress shoes, they are minimalist on purpose and won't hold up to an extraordinary amount of abuse.
- Features the Aris Allen Raw Sole: a flexible leather sole and heel made especially to provide you with the action you want on the dance floor. Ask any dance instructor: the “fastness” of the sole forces you to “find your center” immediately.
- See sizing recommendations below. These are fitting EEE dancers true to size but you may wish to go up a half size if you have orthotics.
- Heel height is approximately 1.1".
- Item #: 476W-BK
(Our returns show we are right about 90% of the time)
Test dancers with narrow feet are not at all happy with these.
Test dancers with medium width feet are not happy with these.
Test dancers with wide feet should find that these are true EEE and fit beautifully and comfortably.
Please get your feet measured at a shoe store if possible. You do not want to get a pair that is too tight.
Notes on the fit:
We designed these to be slightly slimmer in the toes and ankle than most other wide-width shoes. Wide-footed guys told us that wide shoes are ugly and designed this to change that. We heard "See that?? So much unnecessary room in the toes on wide shoes. It's my foot that's wide - not my toes." and "Shoe companies think that if my feet are wide, my ankles are, too. Not so!"
Longtime customers please note:
Did you have our old #440W or #445W? Our old wide shoes were slightly mis-labeled. We noted this in our old product description by saying "We find that these wide width shoes run a half size larger than our regular ones" so to get a good fit you needed to order a half size smaller (e.g.: a person who was a true size 10.5 would fit our 10 back then). So if you have an old pair of our wide wingtips or captoes it's likely you will want a 1/2 size larger in this style. If you are a 10 in our old wide dress shoes you will likely fit a 10.5 in these. We have records going back about 6 years - feel free to call (410-990-0005) if you want to know what size you originally purchased.
EEE is known as "Triple Eddie" in the shoe biz. We got to talk to a very old career shoe salesman and he told us that nickname was used so they could talk about a customer's foot width discreetly.
This captoe is made in the Blucher style, meaning that unlike most dress shoes they are constructed to open and close across the foot with laces (rather than being stitched down at the base of the laces) to allow you to adjust the fit to your liking. Check out Swing Shoes 101 for more about this.
ABOUT THE ARIS ALLEN RAW SOLE:
- The Aris Allen Raw Sole is made from flexible hard leather that gets “faster” over time by repeatedly absorbing the natural humidity in the air (especially at a dance) and drying. The bottom of the sole and heel is made from sanded hard leather and after a few hours of wear they become “raw” on the bottom and perform a lot like Chrome Leather (suede) which allows you to spin and slide, and still control the floor. If you find the sole has picked up dirt from the floor and is slowing down, just shuffle your feet on the sidewalk once or twice to refresh it.
- The raw leather surface is designed for the intermediate / advanced dancer - but they're also great as a second pair for beginners... the “fastness” of the sole forces you to “find your center” immediately.
HOW THESE SHOES ARE CONSTRUCTED:
They are absolutely 100% handmade. The cutting of the leather is done by hand - not stamped out, the glue is put on with a brush, not a machine, and the sewing, while done with a sewing machine, is done one at a time. You can even see the occasional pencil mark! This means that the shoe on your foot is the product of a craftsman who sees the shoe from start to finish. This also explains why you will find the occasional imperfection. They are made one at a time.