Alden x Ealdwine Brown Regina Grain Calfskin Wingtip Boots
Sometimes things just have to converge to happen. This particular pair of boots is really the convergence of two stories, that made them come to be. The first part of this, was my desire to get something special in Brown Regina Grain – as I have seen several pairs in the past in Regina Grain and they have always appealed to me, however, for some reason or another, I never quite pulled the trigger on it. The second half of this story, was my visit in October 2019 to my friends Matt and Jim, the proprietors of Ealdwine, in Raleigh, NC.
I have said this before, but I will restate it here again, I have looked at, tried on, and owned many variants of the Wingtip Boot pattern from various different manufacturers, but none appeal to me in the way that Alden’s Wingtip Boot does. There are many subtle differences between the different patterns that make a huge difference. Things like the amount of vamp between the wingtip and the eyestay, how far back the front wing goes, the size of the front wing. I have never seen anyone nail all of those proportions the way that Alden does. The interesting part of Alden is that their traditional Wingtip Boot is made on the Barrie Last, but their perfect dimensions holds true on the many different Lasts that they make it on. Whether it be the Barrie, Plaza, Grant, or even the Aberdeen Last – the proportions just work perfectly.
When I visited Matt and Jim, we were discussing the potential of doing a collaboration and although most would expect me to do some crazy Shell Cordovan model, because I am certain that you have observed my affinity towards Shell, I kind of wanted to do something different. I have owned Alpine Grain in the past, still do, and it is a truly beautiful leather, but I wanted to try something that was closer to the buttery softness that Edward Green’s Utah leather offered. This Regina Grain definitely hit that mark. It has a beautiful grain pattern and is truly an exquisite leather to touch. Nice and soft and yet with a sense of rigidity and ruggedness.
As I stated earlier, the Barrie Last is Alden’s defacto Last to make Wingtip Boots on and candidly, although I truly love the Barrie Last, I really wanted something a little different and after seeing Alden of Carmel’s Aberdeen Lasted boots several years back, I knew that that was the way to go. The Aberdeen is Alden’s sleekest Last with a nice, almost A shape to the overall Last. It also is the best fitting Last that Alden makes for me personally. Although I love the pazazz of the Brass Hardware, I really wanted this to be a dressier Boot, and thought that tonal hardware would complete that ambiance. The outsole is Alden’s custom oil soaked single leather outsoles, commonly referred to as the FlexWelt for wet weather performance and comfort. The soles are complimented with Alden’s 4A Heel, which provides a nice sturdy foundation that will last. These boots have Alden’s classic and famous Tan “Antique” edges for a modern and stylish look and have a flat 360 degree welt that compliments the boots design, pattern, and formality perfectly.
Ultimately, these are some fantastic boots made out of a special material, that I am looking forward to wearing for many years to come!