Paul Evans is a shoe company that I’ve had on my radar for a while now. Currently, they carry shoes ranging from $150 (driving loafer), $350 (leather sneakers), and $450 (the rest).
The $450 price point puts them in a class above the likes of American made Allen Edmonds, newcomer Grant Stone, and on par with Spanish shoemaker, Carmina.
The question has to be asked. Are Paul Evans shoes worth it? Read on to see what I think.
ABOUT PAUL EVANS NY
Paul Evans NY is men’s shoe company based out of New York City, co-founded by Evan Fript in 2013.
Their mission is to help men everywhere step up their shoe game by offering stylish, yet comfortable shoes. No retail or brand markup, just high quality, luxury Italian made shoes delivered straight to you, the consumer.
And granted cutting out the middle man isn’t an original idea, many consumers prefer to shop online, directly from their favorite brands, so it’s a smart move.
STYLE & DESIGN
I went with The Martin Wholecut in Havana brown, the most vibrant color option, in my opinion. I consider wholecuts next level when it comes to men’s shoes. And being my first pair of wholecut oxfords, I was excited to try them on.
If you don’t know what wholecuts are, they’re essentially a formal dress shoe with the leather uppers crafted in a one-piece construction which makes for an elegant shape and streamlined aesthetic. It’s an oxford, but can also be a brogue. The wholecut’s sleek appearance and vivid Havana brown color makes them perhaps the most eye catching pair of shoes I own.
Simply put, Paul Evans shoes are beautiful and bold, and none moreso than The Martin Wholecut.
I opted for the lighter Havana brown shade because I thought it would look great with jeans. In fact, I wore them with a pair of faded, mid-wash denim and a double breasted blazer in Fit Check Friday Vol. 3. If you didn’t know #FitCheckFriday is a new weekly series I made for IGTV (Instagram Television). The versatile wholecuts also play nicely with dark wash jeans as well as tailored trousers.
QUALITY & CRAFTSMANSHIP
Paul Evans shoes are designed in New York and crafted by hand in Italy (Naples), the epicenter of the fashion world. They’re made with full grain, Italian calfskin leather.
These handmade shoes are Blake welted (or Blake stitched), which is a hallmark of quality shoe construction. A Blake construction allows for re-soling, a slick, stylish aesthetic, and maximum comfort. Many would say that a Goodyear welt is an indication of a higher quality shoe, but that’s simply not true. Each have their own unique advantages.
In short, Goodyear welted shoes have outsoles stitched by hand or machine, outside the edge of the insole, which makes it easier for cobblers to re-sole the shoes.
With a Blake welt, the leather upper is stitched on the inside of the shoe, which requires a specialized machine. This makes Blake welt shoes more difficult to re-sole, but with a lighter and sleeker aesthetic than Goodyear welted shoes.
I scanned the shoe over and over and couldn’t find any visible imperfections with the leather or stitching, which would be easy to spot on such a naked shoe.
COMFORT & DURABILITY
Normally dress shoes require some sort of break-in period, but the Martin Wholecuts are comfortable straight out of the box. I even did some light jogging wearing the shoes and they feel great. No discomfort behind the heel or around the ankles as is common with dress shoes.
There’s some minor creasing after wearing the shoes for a few days, which is pretty normal as leather shoes (no matter the quality) are gonna crease. I haven’t worn the shoes extensively to comment on the durability overtime, however after a few days of wear, it’s maintaining its shape with minimal creasing.
I wanted to quickly note Paul Evans shoe sizes. Their sizing is similar to other luxury shoe brands like Gucci, Tod’s and Prada.
Paul Evans shoes run a full size larger than most US dress shoes and 1.5 – 2 sizes larger than athletic shoes. So, you’ll need to order at least one size smaller than you’re used to in US dress shoes. You can refer to the sizing instructions on their website.
I’m normally a size 7.5 US men’s, but I ordered a 6.5 based on their sizing guide.
At a $450 price point, Paul Evans shoes aren’t cheap. They’re priced above the classic Allen Edmonds, an American brand with a heritage and reputation for crafting quality, stylish staples.
The shoes are a little bit pricey in my opinion, but then again you’re paying for handmade shoes made in Italy with an impeccable design aesthetic.
Additionally, Paul Evans NY offers fast and free 2-3 day shipping with free returns. Each shoe comes with a dust bag for each individual shoe and a black metal shoe horn.
PROS & CONS
- Beautiful shoe design
- Quality craftsmanship
- Made in Italy
- No clout of a Gucci or Prada
THE BOTTOM LINE
Although Paul Evans NY is a newcomer in the crowded men’s shoe market, they’re making a name for themselves as a leading direct-to-consumer shoe brand.
Not only are the shoes are beautifully designed and crafted, but they are a fraction of the cost of other “luxury brands” out there, albeit without the clout of a Gucci or Prada.
I’d say if it’s within your budget, Paul Evans NY is a shoe brand worth checking out.
Would I pick up another pair from Paul Evans? Probably not, because it’s a bit too expensive for my taste and I could find just as good of value at Allen Edmonds or Beckett Simonon at a more affordable price point.
I hope you found this Paul Evans shoe review informative.
A note: The shoes in this review were complimentary. These are all my thoughts and opinions based on my experience.
ON TO YOU, WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON WHOLECUTS?
Let’s continue the discussion over in the Gentlemen Within Private Facebook Community.
Looking forward to seeing you in there.
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