When you’ve made enough visits to thrift stores (I’ve made hundreds) and handled enough suits and shoes (thousands), eventually you get to the point that quality items fairly jump off the rack and scream at you from among all the dreck.

That happened to me last week at a local shoe-repair shop that refurbishes and sells used shoes on the side.  I was browsing through the racks of shoes that varied in quality from the awful to the passable, and then the black-cherry gleam of something special caught my eye.  I picked them up – yep, vintage Johnston & Murphy shell cordovan wingtips, from the days when J&Ms were something special, and they look like they’ve never been worn.

Too small for me, sadly, but I flipped them and made a little profit to fund my thrift-junkie habit.

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3 Responses to Diamonds in the Rough

  1. Jason Borah says:

    What was the name of the shoe repair shop? I’m looking for one in Louisville.

    • Jeff says:

      Jason – King’s Shoe Repair on Hunsinger Ln in Louisville. I also use Badger Shoe Repair in New Albany for resoling. Badger does better work with better quality sole leather, but it’s harder for me to get over there and he requires payment up front in cash. King’s does good work too, and sells lots of refurbished lightly used shoes. Mostly Johnston & Murphy.

  2. Henery says:

    Hey I live in the Louisville area too. I’m by Iroquois Park on Taylor Blvd. I know this is probably a trade secret. What what are some of you most favorite thrift stores?

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