The “Imperial” vs “Royal Imperial” distinction has always intrigued me. This catalog implies that the “hand finishing/polishing” of uppers is the only distinction, at least in circa 1969 times. Now, excuse my skeptical (cynical? )nature, but I kind of figured that, in later years, Florsheim pushed the “Royal” to assure the public that “the quality is still there” as they continued to fight loss of customers in the increasingly price-sensitive world market.
Your thoughts please, David…
In my opinion, the Royal Imperial shoes of the 1960s were slightly better than the 1960s Imperial shoes. The Royal Imperial shoes of the early 1990s tried to reestablish a quality product. Avoid the 1990s corrected leather Royal Imperials.
John, this style of shoe became very popular with youth in the early 1970’s in the UK. I don’t recall the Florsheim name but it was the Imperial on offer having 5 nails in the sole and the ‘suicide’ heel. Likely it was modified and re-badged for export. They were referred to as brogues, without the distinction of being ‘long wing’, a US rather than UK style, and were known as ‘Royals’. Burgundy was the preferred colour, as cherry red was with Doc Martens, and I doubt whether cordovan was on offer.
Any idea how much a pair of Kenmoors were at the time?
I believe a pair of Kenmoor long wings was around $35 in 1970.
I worked for Florsheim from 2004-11. Thanks for posting this catalog. I always found it fascinating that narrow widths were mostly 9 and sometimes up to 13 (even in my time on certain models) but wide widths started at size 7 but usually stopped at 12. Men had long slender feet or short fat feet. 😂
I’d love to get a Kenmoor in any color 8 1/2D. Not shell and doesn’t have to be very vintage. Can you help?
I wish I had a store room of vintage Florsheim pairs but I don’t. Ebay is your best bet for finding a pair.
Worked at Florsheim for many years.
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