The Edward Green Falkirk Review: We Heard You Like Brogues, So we Put Some Brogue in your Brogues
When I started the blog I didn't intend for it to become an unofficial Edward Green fansite, but from the content of the reviews lately, that does seem to be the direction it's gone. They are fast becoming my favourite British maker - I would have Crockett & Jones in that spot before, but as my collection has become pretty well rounded by this point I'm focusing on quality over quantity.
This post will be about a style I've long coveted but never previously owned - the Falkirk wingtip brogue.
The Falkirk isn't exactly part of EG's standard rotation - I guess if you had one made and factored in the fees they would run for about £1,240. These were a very spur-of-the-moment but no-brainer purchase when the excellent Skoaktiebolaget mentioned they had a small sample sale on their Styleforum thread. I believe they were made to order in 2017.
At 250 euros in nearly new condition, I could scarcely say no. Another £50 in customs fees (from Sweden to the UK) and they arrived a couple of days after placing the order. With free shipping, that put the total price at about £260 - astonishing value overall.
Edward Green Falkirk
Edwardian Antique brown
UK 9.5, D width, 82 last
A very broguish charm
The Falkirk is the wingtip brogue taken to its logical extreme, with additional punch details on the side of the toe, a more extensive thistle-shaped medallion pattern, further broguing on the heels, and an unusual scalloped backstay section. It's a testament to how busy a shoe can be in terms of design while still looking elegant.
They are on the almond-toed 82 last, which is probably my least favourite of the "big 3" EG lasts - the 82, the 606 and the 202. To my eye at least, the toe just looks a bit elongated and skinny. Obviously, this is somewhat exaggerated by the narrower D width too.
Starting at the toe medallion... and it's a lot. Maybe some people will hate this, but the thistle pattern is certainly unique - wingtip brogues can risk looking a bit samey when you have enough in your collection, so it's great to have some visual variety.
It's the unusual backstay shape that most stands out. The scallop shape is reminiscent of the Alfred Sargent Moore and Gaziano & Girling St James II, pictured here as well. Where the Falkirk differentiates of course is the continuation of the broguing across the whole back of the heel panel.
The soles are typically well-finished for Edward Green, and the addition of toe-taps is quickly becoming a must for me - it's a shame when an otherwise smart pair starts to wear away and fray too soon at the toes.
The broguing detail continues into the tongue as well - a small but welcome detail that is relatively uncommon, particularly in RTW shoes. You can see the holes are punched fully through the leather. I wish this was a more common feature.
The leather is Edwardian Antique - a relatively straightforward tan shade that is enhanced by Edward Green's characteristic toe and heel burnishing. The toe burnishing is nicely and somewhat subtly done - compared to the rather blobby toe burnishing I've seen on EG pairs in the past it's very welcome. The heel burnishing is a bit more aggressive, as you can see from the photos.
Well I guess I can stretch to that
I take an E width in most Edward Green lasts, so ordering a D was clearly optimistic in terms of fit - but given the price, I know could sell them on easily with no loss if needed.
Knowing this would be the case I ordered one of these bad boys to attempt a bit of home stretching. I've been wanting to try this out for a while, so it was a good excuse.
The stretcher is a substantial piece of equipment that slots into the shoe. You screw the heel section into place until it has tension against the back of the shoe, then rotate the hook at the back of the device to expand the width of the section in the body of the shoe.
As it turned out, I could tell as soon as I tried one of them that stretching was going to be a non-starter. It was clearly going to be too tight over the instep, and I didn't want to risk ruining such a nice pair by stretching them too aggressively.
These have gone off to eBay, but it's been useful to learn to avoid the D width completely in the future. Still a lovely pair though, and should I ever see a slightly wider pair I'll be snapping them up.