Grant Stone Tassel Loafer: Still in Love
Price: $348 [Currently on Sale for $246]
The Grant Stone Tassel Loafer is a comfortable, durable, good-looking option that will fit most people better than other tassel loafers – and is affordable to boot.
The Grant Stone Tassel Loafer might not even be available when you read this, and isn’t the most formal option if you’re looking to wear them with a suit.
|Materials||Suede / Leather|
|Weight||630 g / 1 lb 6.2 oz|
|Country of Origin||China|
Disclaimer: Grant Stone provided these loafers for the purpose of review; however, this is not a sponsored post. Grant Stone was not given the ability to review, edit, or comment on anything said here before it was posted, and everything said below is an honest assessment of the product.
A knife! A knife through my heart. Six months ago, I asked if Wyatt Gilmore, owner of the brand Grant Stone, designed the Grant Stone Tassel Loafer specifically for me. Initial impressions said yes – it was comfortable and looked great. If you want to check out that initial review, where I cover Grant Stone’s history and the details of the loafer, click here.
Unfortunately, between then and now, Grant Stone started to cycle out this particular make up. This sort of thing happens – when you make footwear that lasts for a while, everyone who wants a pair will eventually buy one. However, it still pains me personally a bit to see this exact make up begin to disappear.
All that being said, there is some good news. First, if you’re reading this soon after it was posted, Grant Stone has 3 colorways of their Tassel Loafer at a discount. Sizing is limited, but most people will be able to find something between the Brown Suede, Tan, and Black.
If you’re reading this a while after it was posted, you’re not out of luck either. The Tobacco Calf Tassel Loafer is still available.
Alright, the intro probably gave away the ending here, so let’s get back to the review. This pair has seen 100 wears, and over 100 miles of use. As with every pair reviewed long term on this site, I tried to use them in the environment they were designed for. In this case that means nice days and mostly office wear, though there were a couple of back yard barbeques in there as well. I always tried to give a full 24 hours in between each wear, and if they were worn on wet surfaces I tried to give 48.
Interested to see why I’m so upset? Read on.
The Uppers of the Grant Stone Tassel Loafers have been amazingly resilient in this Coffee Suede make up. To be fair, I wore them almost exclusively on days with nicer weather and in an office, but you’d be hard pressed to tell the difference between day two and day 100.
Stitching has remained nice and tight, without a loose thread appearing anywhere. This includes the inside of the loafer after several sockless days – no easy feat.
The suede itself also shows very little wear. Other than a patch that is slightly lighter in shade due to the way the tassel hits it, the only visible change on the upper since day one is the suede rolling around the toe structure and a slight darkening of color. And, with the color, I probably wouldn’t have noticed if I didn’t have pictures of the pair new in front of me.
To be honest, I was kind of hoping for more change here. If it were not for the fact that the original pictures have spring flowers and the updated ones fall leaves, I wouldn’t fault you for thinking these were only worn a few times. I even went through and labeled each of the pictures as new or 100 wears, because it’s sometimes difficult to tell.
Really, the only place on the upper that shows wear is the shoe losing a bit of structure. And that is only when there isn’t a foot or shoe tree in there. They are suede after all, and this is perfectly acceptable.
Mid- and Outsole
Much like the upper, the leather outsole on the Grant Stone Tassel Loafer has held up amazingly well. The wear here is clearly more apparent, the outsole is leather, but well within reason.
Both the leather on the outsole and the rubber heel cap have worn about as well as can be expected given the materials. Again, they were not seeing 20-mile hikes on wet concrete, but suede tassel loafers were never designed to do that.
After 100 miles, the outsole has just started to wear down do the point where threads are starting to fray from contact with the ground. For most outsoles, this generally means the sole has about 2/3rds of its life left. 300 miles (or around 18 months of regular wear) for an outsole is great – especially in leather.
The only really weird thing about the shoe can be found here, though. After wearing them for a few weeks, glue (I think) started to seep out around the rubber heel panel. It was on the bottom of the shoe, and didn’t impact use in any way. My guess is that it was some combination of the summer heat and my weight that brought it out.
I have found that these Grant Stone Tassel Loafers go with almost everything.
I’ve worn this pair with wool trousers and a sport coat, chinos and a polo, and everything in between. Unlike most tassel loafers, which are either incredibly formal or incredibly casual, the Grant Stone Tassel Loafer offers a middle ground which fits the design perfectly.
The suede on this model definitely pushes them a bit more on the casual side, so if you’re in a more conservative office the leather might be the choice, but I don’t think either make-up is a deal breaker.
Fit & Comfort
After 100 wears, the Grant Stone Tassel Loafer has not changed at all in it’s fit.
Built on their Alexander last, this loafer has a very wide toebox and a fairly narrow heel. This means these will fit most people so much better than every other tassel loafer last out there. It’s really an amazing last.
Sometimes shoes can change shape as you wear them and sink into the footbed, but I found that these are very similar in fit as they were new. While I never recommend sizing up or down in the hope something fits down the line, these certainly won’t change at all.
I measure between an 11.5E and an 11.75D on the brannock. I typically wear a size 12D in most stitched footwear, and that is what I got these in. They fit perfectly with dress socks, but I can fit in them with a pair Darn Tough light cushion socks as well. If I was going to exclusively go without socks, I would likely want to size down a half size, but they are wearable that way too.
This is slightly different than what Grant Stone suggests, which is a half-size down from your typical dress shoe size. The good news is that sizing exchanges are free, though if you just return there is a $10 restocking fee.
Comfort is a major reason why these are among my most worn pairs of footwear. These still knock it out of the park.
I have to start with that last. As someone who has always loved the tassel loafer look, I’ve never been able to find one that was actually comfortable until the Grant Stone option. The pointed toebox was always something you tolerated for the style, but not here.
Further, these are definitely on the structured side of loafers. They offer support enough to wear them on a day where you are spending a lot of time walking around. I personally like that structure, but it could be a drawback if you’re looking for something with a lot of flex in it.
Ease of Care
Is there anything easier than basically nothing at all? That’s what I’ve done with these.
These Grant Stone Tassel Loafers were never conditioned, cleaned, shampooed, or anything of the sort. I didn’t even use a waterproofing spray, though I never specifically wore them when it was wet out. They simply didn’t need it, though it’s possible a suede eraser may have addressed the scuff from the tassel.
I will put one major caveat – these loafers absolutely need shoe trees when you don’t wear them. The soft upper is very much at the will of the thick leather outsole. If that starts to curl, the upper isn’t going to do anything to stop it. Shoe trees are fairly affordable, and don’t ever wear out, so there is no excuse to not use them.
As of time of writing, Grant Stone does not offer resoling, so when the time comes, you will need to look locally.
Pricing & Value
As with everything in 2022, the MSRP for Grant Stone products has risen since the last review, and the Tassel Loafer is no exception. If you pick up a pair of Tobacco Calf at full price, expect to pay $348. As mentioned above, however, the Coffee Suede pair here is on sale for $246. The the Chestnut and Black Calf are also on sale for $261. While supplies last, of course.
Even with this price increase, Grant Stone still comes in at way less than all their competitors. Alden, the closest in construction to Grant Stone is at nearly $600. Crockett & Jones is now nearly $700!
Even after the price increase, the Grant Stone Tassel Loafer is the clear value king in the segment. I personally think it’s probably the best one out there at any price, but the fact that it’s still the cheapest in its segment means it’s a slam dunk.
Sure, there are more affordable options, such as the Meermin, but I don’t think the quality is close to comparable.
Of course, it wouldn’t be fair to the others to not mention that Grant Stone is made in China as opposed to the U.S. or U.K. Construction costs are cheaper, and country of origin matters to some buyers. As I always say, however, Grant Stone doesn’t try to hide this.
The Grant Stone Tassel Loafer is comfortable, durable, and looks great. It even manages to stretch from shorts to a sport coat. It really is the do-it-all loafer.
I’m genuinely a bit sad that Grant Stone is phasing out some of the colors, but at least it does provide an opportunity to get in for a more affordable price. The durability means that you’ll be able to keep them up and running until they produce another run of your preferred make-up.
If you are considering getting a pair of tassel loafers, these really are a great pick up.