John from Arlington asks us:
I wear through the (leather) soles of my dress shoes at an alarming rate. What can I do to maximize their life?
Some people walk more, or have odd gaits, or spend more time in wet places, or whatever… and they wear through their soles. First of all, you should be sure that you’re buying shoes with welted soles, not glued soles, so they’re replaceable. That means no $60 dress shoes for you (unless they’re on sale).
But there is something else you can do. For about $2, your cobbler can add heel and toe protectors to the soles of your shoes. They’re nailed in at the outside of the back of the heel and at the toe – the two places where your foot hits the pavement hardest. These pieces of hard plastic take a beating so your soles don’t have to, and they can be replaced whenever they need to be for another five bucks or so.
One word of warning: they do make a little bit of clickety-clack if you’re a clickety-clack walker. We like to think of that as our “portentous approach” sound. Because we’re bad-asses.