These aren't something I can see myself wearing, but I appreciate you putting quality content out there dude. +1
I like getting things that are deemed unattainable and had been keeping my eye out for Carmina’s Shell Chelsea for a while. I knew they were experimenting and had seen a MTO or two done by others. When Carmina released their new MTO page, low and behold, they had an option to do a Whole cut shell Chelsea.
Part of the intrigue for me is the notion of a single cut shell, that’s been clicked and lasted to create a single boot. Artistry at it’s finest and I knew I had to have this.
There aren’t many other places that will do a shellsea, let alone a wholecut version without paying an exorbitant price. The only ones I could think of are GG and Meccariello but those will easily go 2-3x the price I paid.
Color Armagnac Shell Cordovan
270 degree gyw
Cost: 773 Euros including Lasted Shoe Trees (MTO Fee waived during promo)
I think it took me about 20 mins to put in my order as I was so excited. I honestly didn’t put too much thought into it other than which shell color I wanted and what last. The only two that intrigued me were the Bourbon and Armagnac. I already had a PTB that looked similar to Bourbon so opted for the other. I was intrigued by the Navy but I also have a Navy Shell MTO coming in so Armagnac it was! I was comfortable with the Rain last and I wasn’t keen on experimenting with a last I wasn’t familiar with.
I was quoted about 45 days and so when I got notification right before Christmas, I was quite surprised. I believe I had read that the Carmina were saving the more difficult MTOs for last and figured mine would be in that group.
Shipping took about a month as I opted for the Spanish post to play the tariff/duty game, which I won!
Fit and Finish
For Rain, I took .5 down from my Brannock, so I these are in 7.5D.
My sizes in other shoes are as follows:
• Brannock: 8/8.5 D/E
• 2030: 8D
• Barrie: 8D
• Detroit: 7UK
• I have many more just ask me
Color is very consistent and uniform, no complaints from me. It's a bit darker than Mahogany but looks brilliant in sunlight. I figured with the darker shell it’d be a lot easier to click than the likes of Whiskey/Natural (although I probably would’ve jumped on it had it been an option).
Stitching could be a tad cleaner as there were some fraying in certain parts and the right boot, near the arch, there are some rough spots or I’m guessing shell’s version of loose grain or lasting issues. There is a tad bit of puckering near the toe but it’s so minute, I couldn’t even capture it with the camera. I am a little concerned about the pull tab as I saw chickenfark had trouble with his, but I had no difficulty putting them on. The lasted trees are really nice but I had to be a bit careful with taking them in and out.
Sizing is great and Rain fits me quite well without looking like blobs on my low instep feet. I also had ordered a Vision Suede Jodhpur w/ Lizard strap in Rain that I really really like. I’ll add those pictures here . Also, I think Rain looks fantastic on Chelseas but I'm quite keen on seeing this on Robert last. Edit: Forgot saurabh from SF did his in bourbon and on Robert last I believe His is gorgeous too.
Overall, I’m ecstatic with finally getting one of my grails. Price was only a few more dollars than the non whole cut version and to me this is a bargain for what you’re getting. I really can't wait to see how the rolls will develop in these. Carmina knows how to do shell, IMO, as well as Alden and at a bargain of a price. Unfortunately, I don't have fit pics as of yet but I'll edit them in tomorrow.
I drooled a little bit just looking at the thumbnail.
These are a beauty.. You will have them forever
Wow, these are absolutely beautiful. Congratulations on your purchase!
my first impression is, Those are ugly
Oh my god, these are fucking gorgeous. I could definitely see paying that much for them.
Drools. I knew they'd be out of my budget before I clicked the price lol.
Chelseas are so fugly. The elastic sides make them look cheap and uninspired