Rancourt Bit Loafers

Around these parts, our affection for Rancourt shoes is well known. A pair both of penny loafers and camp moccasins from the Maine-based company have a regular and treasured place in my shoe rotation.

So it seemed only natural that, in the market for another pair of slip on shoes, I would turn, once again, to the good folks at Rancourt.

I decided that my next pair would be Gucci-style bit loafers, every bit as classic at the penny and tassel iterations. It’s a style I’ve long coveted but one that, up until now, never had a place in my footwear collection.

I placed a custom order, paying the modest $25 upcharge for a split size request, and waited a couple of months for the shoes to arrive.

And arrive they did, more or less within the promised time span.

But there are two issues with these shoes. When I first tried them on, I was aghast at how tight they were. I did a little comparison against my Rancourt penny loafers, and the bit loafers were about 3/8″ shorter–despite being ostensibly the same size.

They’ve begun to stretch a bit after a few wearings, but they’re still too snug for regular use. I imagine the break-in period for these to be in the order of months rather than weeks.

The other issue is one of quality control. The left sole, before I even tried it on, looked a bit discolored and scratched. Now I realize that, after the first trip outside, that consideration is moot. I’d just like the soles to look pristine when I pull them out of the box.

Out of the box, they should not look like this.

At this point, our experience demands we knock Rancourt down a peg, from highly recommend to recommend with reservations.

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