Certified American: Sebago’s Handsewn In Maine Collection

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A few months ago shoemaker Sebago finally got in on the made in America trend with a new penny loafer produced in Maine — exactly where a PR spokesperson was unable to tell me.

The loafer is part of a new collection called Handsewn In Maine that is available at Saks Fifth Avenue, Bloomingdales, and at Sebago.com. The shoes are priced at $425.

A press release from the company touts the brand’s heritage, which goes back to the state of Maine in 1946, then goes on to play up the collection’s “premium packaging,” which includes “a certificate of authenticity signed by the craftsman.”

Somehow I don’t think this was necessary back in the day. — c C m

43 Comments on "Certified American: Sebago’s Handsewn In Maine Collection"

  1. All that stitching on the side is ugly (as are the beefrolls). And, as was the case with the Bass reissues from a few weeks ago, these are rediculously overpriced. $425.00?! Why would anyone buy these when they can buy Aldens for the same price (or, even, Allen Edmonds loafers for half as much)? Or, shell cordovan loafers for $150 more?

    “Heritage….back to 1946….” Ha ha ha……

  2. Beefroll with a pinch? They forgot the toggle bit and kilt. 😉

  3. Why pay $425 for a shoe handsewn in Maine when you can pay $100 for the same shoe handsewn in the Dominican Republic?

  4. Welcome to made in America……

  5. Jack
    I think you meant El Salvador. The Logan Weejuns can be had at Amazon for $80. I purchased a pair in Jan.and maybe I’m getting senile in my old age, but I can’t tell any substantial difference between these and the last pair I bought in 1980. The “road test” continues, for $80 it was, so far, worth the gamble. Besides, let’s be honest Weejuns never were on the level of Aldens or Cole-Haan.

  6. Which pair of loafers from AE do you recommend, AEV? What do you think of the Walden?

  7. I am very fond of my Allen Edmonds Verdun loafers, though I do think it is a bit weird to name a pair of shoes after a first world war artillery battle.

  8. I am now and shall remain willing to pay more for Made in America pieces.

  9. Hilton
    You can not go wrong with the Walden. Great shoe and attractive price. Like butter!

  10. Ricky Rimmer | May 17, 2013 at 10:05 pm |

    Hard to beat AE in my humble opinion.

    On a side note: What has that fellow over at Talk Ivy been doing to annoy so many people?!

    http://www.punchinthefacebook.com/punch/trolltown/jimmy-frost-mellor

  11. Reactionary Trad | May 17, 2013 at 10:26 pm |

    Why pay $425 when you can get the real thing for $99 from L.L. Bean?

    http://www.llbean.com/llb/shop/19405?page=mens-classic-penny-loafers&subrnd=0

  12. Jack Armstrong | May 18, 2013 at 4:47 am |

    @Ricky Rimmer Don’t mess with that Mellor fellow, he knows people at the FBI.

  13. Honest Abe | May 18, 2013 at 5:15 am |

    @Robert

    Buying “Made in USA” products means encouraging illegal immigration.
    Buy imported goods and encourage “them” to stay in the Third World.

  14. Anybody tried the Russell Mocassin penny loafer? Custom made, lightweight (unlined) like the old Weejun, leather options (cordovan, burgundy calf, etc.), and reasonably priced.

  15. @ Honest Abe
    an interesting take, and one I have to seriously consider now. thanks for the opposing opinion!

  16. @ honest abe-is that a serious comment? Do you know anything at all about the history of this country and economics? do you consider yourself a decent person? (calling another human being “illegal” is immoral IMO)-the strongest this country was probably ever-the most vibrant middle class-was in the 1950s and 60s when we led the world in manufacturing, had unions that paid high wages, and Americans bought American made goods-lots of the old trads on this blog long for the days when Brooks and Press and other made their stuff here-if you dont want to pay that much for shoes feel free not to, but dont make an argument like that. . .

  17. Roy R. Platt | May 18, 2013 at 8:38 am |

    As to the comparison of the cost between shoes made in the USA compared to shoes made elsewhere, one might want to compare the $225.00 AE Kenwood (made in the USA) to the $195.00 AE Flagstaff (made in the Dominican Republic).

    The comparison between the $425.00 Sebago shoe (made in Maine) compared to the $225.00 AE shoe (made in Wisconsin) is hard to understand, as I did not think that workers in Maine were paid that much more than workers in Wisconsin.

  18. Honest Abe | May 18, 2013 at 8:45 am |

    @dgb

    Please feel free to buy shoes made by illegal immigrants working in sweatshops in the US, and feeling patriotic because you have “bought American”.

  19. @honest abe
    @dgb
    When I buy imported goods from L.L. Bean, Lands’ End, etc., I am still “buying American”: I am supporting American companies and contributing to the wages of employees of American companies.

  20. @Hilton – The only AE’s I own are cap toes/oxfords (e.g. Park Avenue, Strand) in shell cordovan. If I was forced to choose a loafer, I’d prob go with the Grayson in shell cordovan (or suede, which Lands’ End actually currently sells….).

  21. Christian | May 18, 2013 at 11:35 am |

    There’s no accounting for taste, AEV. Suede tassel loafers are so hideous!

  22. Curmudgeon | May 18, 2013 at 12:05 pm |

    Tassel loafers are no more hideous than bit loafers, in this old goat’s opinion.

  23. @MAC – When I said “the same shoe,” I wasn’t referring to an entirely different shoe, so no, I didn’t mean El Salvador.

  24. @Honest Abe – Have you ever seen Our American Cousin yet? I think you’d enjoy it.

  25. @CC – you find these loafers hideous? http://www.crockettandjones.com/Product/Cavendish-Polobrown

    If so, it says a lot….esp from a guy who’s profiled such footwear nightmares as black textured (and smooth) gold bit Gucci loafers, these $425 Sebagos, $350 calf Weejuns, a RL Polo model with non functional double gold toned buckles, and spit shined AE cowhide beefroll penny loafers (paired with light tan demim – !)….

  26. Jack
    You’re correct, I was was talking about the original penny loafer, the Logan Weejun, It’s not lined.

  27. @Reactionary Trad
    Wow, an impressive loafer from L.L. Bean. I have never seen them in the flesh, so to speak. Good quality leather or Bass like quality?

  28. Christian wants dispensation for his SoCal surfer Weejuns shorts and I understand the regional Ivy tweeks we are all guilty of, even if we don’t realize it. I am guilty of owning early 80s Cole-Haan brown suede dress tassels, as well as ones in white buck. My sins don’t stop there, I also own late 60s Cole-Haan in scotch grain, early 80s Polo in british tan and the savings grace Alden cordovans. I await my penance, let’er roll.

  29. @Hilton – I am with AEV on the Graysons and I like the suede version, too! Also, I think that the Patriots can be had at the outlet for $179 through the 27th. I might bite.

  30. Christian opines,
    “Suede tassel loafers are so hideous!”

    I like the dark brown ones from Alden, but then again, I like just about every shoe they make in that wonderful dark brown suede.

  31. Christian | May 18, 2013 at 4:15 pm |

    @AEV

    “Hideous” was rhetorical mockery. I have that same shoe in calfskin. But I don’t like suede loafers. If I were going to wear brown suede (and I used to own several pairs), I’ll go full-on Duke of Windsor and wear lace-ups.

    As for the “it says a lot from a guy who’s profiled” line…

    We’re going on year five and it should be pretty clear by now that Tradsville is a news beat that I work. I report the news, as with the shoe that is the topic of the post; sometimes I comment on the news, and sometimes I share things that I like.

    But I don’t choose the subjects for posts based on whether or not I like them. I choose them because I think they’re germane to the audience, which, as we know, consists of men quick to disagree on just about anything.

  32. Reactionary Trad | May 18, 2013 at 11:24 pm |

    @ M Arthur

    LL Bean loafers are the equivalent of Bass loafers in terms of quality. That means they are authentic, not some pretentious, over-priced, snobbish product. Yankee simplicity.

  33. I wish Alden would reintroduce the 5611.

  34. “Illegal” is a reference to a person’s legal status, not their mataphysical essence. Stating that a person is here in the US illegally is quite proper, when correctly applied. Also, nobody is forcing these illegals to come here and work in American “sweatshops”; I, for one, would be glad if they went home…and took some American liberals with them.

  35. Ricky Rimmer | May 19, 2013 at 6:58 am |

    Comment by Jack Armstrong — May 18, 2013 @ 4:47 am

    @Ricky Rimmer Don’t mess with that Mellor fellow, he knows people at the FBI.

    The Free Talk Ivy Army seem to have ousted the fellow. After a period of reeducation, some of them may even be capable of contributing on grown- up sites.

  36. Jack Armstrong | May 19, 2013 at 8:07 am |

    @Ricky Rimmer

    It’s nice to hear that SOB, Jimmy Frost Mellor is gone. The most despicable man I have ever encountered on or off line in my life. A supposed convert to Judaism who uses that to claim he is being persecuted. He’s hacked my account on Talk Ivy on numerous occasions and posted anti semitic comments, to stir up his “crew”. And the morons buy it every time. “”Hateful Americans”, “Ivy Style is full of racist, bigot, homophobes…”, blah de blah blah. I’ve seen him slander people, calling them pedophiles, post peoples private phone #s and hack forum members accounts and post their “private messages” in his duties as moderator. He left with one more lie, saying he ” unbanned” me. He didn’t, the coward.

    Thanks for that linc. When 15,000 people ( and counting) want to punch your face it might be time to reevaluate how you’ve been living your life.

  37. Ricky Rimmer | May 19, 2013 at 9:14 am |

    Comment by Jack Armstrong — May 19, 2013 @ 8:07 am

    @Ricky Rimmer

    It’s nice to hear that SOB, Jimmy Frost Mellor is gone. The most despicable man I have ever encountered on or off line in my life. A supposed convert to Judaism who uses that to claim he is being persecuted. He’s hacked my account on Talk Ivy on numerous occasions and posted anti semitic comments, to stir up his “crew”. And the morons buy it every time. “”Hateful Americans”, “Ivy Style is full of racist, bigot, homophobes…”, blah de blah blah. I’ve seen him slander people, calling them pedophiles, post peoples private phone #s and hack forum members accounts and post their “private messages” in his duties as moderator. He left with one more lie, saying he ” unbanned” me. He didn’t, the coward.

    Thanks for that linc. When 15,000 people ( and counting) want to punch your face it might be time to reevaluate how you’ve been living your life.

    Doubtless he’ll claim he trolled it all into being.

  38. Jack Armstrong | May 19, 2013 at 9:34 am |

    @ Ricky
    Yes, I was going to say that. Somehow he’ll say getting punched in the face was his idea.

  39. Comment by Honest Abe — May 18, 2013 @ 5:15 am
    @Robert

    Buying “Made in USA” products means encouraging illegal immigration.
    Buy imported goods and encourage “them” to stay in the Third World.
    ——————————
    Would that it were true. As it so happens, many Mexicans who have work in Mexico decide to quit and come to the greener pastures of the US. Of course, were we to open up to everyone who wanted to come here merely because they thought they could earn more, we would have a few billion people in the country.

    “Economic opportunity for the immigrant” is not a appropriate, or feasible, reason to let immigrants in.

    Ultimately, foreigners have no right to enter another country, much less immigrate to it; it is a privilege that a country extends, or denies, as it sees fit. Immigration should always be to the benefit of the accepting country. Part of being a sovereign state means determining who gets to enter, for what reasons, and under what conditions.

  40. I’m almost certain those are made by Rancourt (I have a pair of Rancourts from Brooks Brothers that have an identical design and stitching), which means you can get the same product for ~$200 less direct from Rancourt or another retailer selling Rancourt-branded shoes. They are excellent shoes and a good value at that price.

  41. Comment by dgb — May 18, 2013 @ 6:26 am

    “calling another human being “illegal” is immoral IMO”
    ———-
    “Illegal” is a simple descriptor, meaning “in violation of the law.” “Illegal alien” is a wonderfully compact and detailed description. Alien means “non-citizen,” so the combination means “a non-citizen who is in violation of the law,” with the understanding that the law being violated in this case is immigration law.

    Calling someone “illegal” is, as SteveE noted, “quite proper, when correctly applied.” What’s immoral is muddying the waters with so much obfuscatory rhetoric that we can’t even rationally discuss the issue anymore.

    “Undocumented worker” is Orwellian in its misdirection. They’re “undocumented’ because they are here illegally, i.e., in violation of the law. Either they entered illegally or they overstayed their visas, or they are working in violation of their visas. No matter how you slice it, they’re breaking our laws: immigration and labor laws at the least, and usually tax and Social Security laws as well.

    Making an emotional issue out of what ought to be a legal one does nothing but ensure that we will be unable to think about it properly, and will make terrible decisions as a result.

  42. Jack Armstrong | May 20, 2013 at 4:59 pm |

    @ Robert C Nesbitt

    Ricky didn’t write that, I did.I saw that coming from a mile away. The “R” word

    I was referring to the holier than thou phony hypocrite leftists on Talk Ivy who can’t wait to pull the race card on Americans. Don’t like jazz – you’re a racist. Don’t jerk off to “Miles” green shirt – racist. And now, so predictably, oppose illegal immigration ? – yes you must be a racist.
    ( Be careful Ivy Style posters, these loons object to the term “third world” also.

    “Calling another human being illegal is immoral IMO” LOL! What a maroon (IMO).

  43. Seignobos | May 23, 2013 at 4:57 pm |

    Around the turn of the Millenium and a couple of years past it, Sebago still made shoes in Maine. They sold a leather-soled, steel-shanked loafer of this design for $130 direct from the factory. It was very traditional and heavy enough to use as a weapon. It ran so narrow I had to order a 7C rather than a 7B. With no change in model name, this shoe suddenly came from the Dominican and wasn’t half the shoe its Daddy was. That was my last pair.

    So, some lost jobs later, Sebago is probably having this made by someone else (Rancourt?) at triple the price.

    Sic transit gloria mundi.

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