"I saw the exact thing elsewhere for half the price."
"They come from the same factory. They're the same quality."
Fact: Most people's powers of observation are not fabulous.
Fact: Most people are glued to a small screen and can't see the details, even if you place the items side by side.
Fact: Most people are so hell bent on bringing down the tall poppy designer item, they don't want to see the differences.
So let's look at an example.
SIA recently saw a "comfort shoe" at Target for $55. It looked remarkably similar to a Dianna Ferrari Supersoft version which has been around for ages for approx $110.
So she put them side by side.
1. The leather feels the same.
2. The shape of the uppers looks the same EXCEPT for the toe area.
3. The bows are identical.
4. The metal trims are identical.
5. The backs look the same.
6. The stitching on the footbed looks the same.
7. Both are made in Vietnam.
8. The rubber sole looks the same thickness
9. The tread pattern differs slightly.
When considering the big picture, the only material difference is the toe area. The Supersoft version has been raised up by sewing an insert of leather which means that the toes (especially the big toe), won't create a stretching out of the leather in that area.
The difference in the toe area is material. It's the difference between a $55 item and an $110 item.
The big toe imprint is one of the commonest wear & tear scenarios which cheaper ballet/flat shoes will encounter. Supersoft have gone the extra mile to ensure it isnt an issue and their product lasts longer than cheaper versions.
Whether that difference is worth $55 [$110 - $55] to you, is a personal matter. But please don't try to tell me that these are the same quality or because they may (?) come from the same factory, that they are the same quality.
Unless you pick loot up on sale (and sale stalking takes time), you won't find quality at a bargain basement price. Because you get what you pay for.
[PS: After this post was researched, SIA found Blue Illusion has a suspiciously similar shoe without the toe adjustment. Again made in Vietnam. Priced at $100.]