So, last week I received my new Loake L1s from Herring Shoes, and now, I’m ready to write my review.
tl;dr: Good for the price, but I recommend saving up for something with better leather.
As always, I did my research before hand, and I was honestly hesitant to shell out $220 on a pair of shoes that either might not fit my, or might be not the best quality. The reviews on the forums seemed to indicate that while Loake in general was fairly decent, the only range really worth buying were the 1880s. Still, the L1 range looked decent, and was within my budget, so I took the plunge.
At £100($193), they are actually cheaper than my shoes from Charles Tyrwhitt; with the exchange rate at the time, plus postage, they came to about $220AUD when I bought them. For that price, they are excellent; Goodyear Welted construction, with a rubber heel, and a quarter leather insole; the only real flaw is the corrected grain leather upper. Being made in India hasn’t affected the construction quality, and they are made well to Loakes standards.
However, as with all corrected grain, the leather is stiff, and plastic-y; despite this, they are still comfortable to wear, and the leather will soften a bit over time. Overall, they are a good shoe, and worth the price. Still, I recommend saving up and buying something with better quality leather, like the 1880 range, or the Herring Classics (which I will be reviewing later this week).