Explanation of Men's Dress Shoes, (Hierarchy of Formality and Why Good Dress Shoes Are Expensive,)



  • BelovedAfeniBelovedAfeni The Pimp Slap App 5150 NationPosts: 8,647 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Goat thread none the less

    I cant see myself in sneakers my entire life
  • Maximus RexMaximus Rex Pulchritudo in Conspectu Regis The EmpreyanPosts: 6,355 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November 2014

    Wearing dress shoes with jeans.

    Is that even possible?

    I’m here to tell you that it is.

    The key to pulling off this look seamlessly is to make sure that you abide by a few rules.

    3 dress shoe and jean rules to be exact.

    So what are these style rules?

    Click here to learn the three style rules by watching my video on YouTube ….


    ….or just read the informative men’s style article below!

    This is a sponsored post brought to you by Lee Jeans.

    I have personally worn their modern series slim straight jeans with dress shoes and love the value and fit!

    3 Rules On Wearing Dress Shoes With Jeans


    1. Make sure you are wearing the right type of jeans

    There are a million types of jeans out there. Well, maybe not that many – but a lot :)

    While all jeans are casual there are some kinds that are dressier than others. Opt for the dressier variety.

    Distressed jeans, jeans with holes, and jeans with a lighter wash are all ultra-casual and will NEVER go well with dress shoes.

    Instead,opt for denim that fits well in the waist and the hips. Watch the length of the jeans and see to it that they are not too long and drag.

    Find jeans that have a more tapered fit at the bottom. Boot cut jeans will not work with dress shoes.

    Never go with a baggy fit but opt for a slim or regular cut.

    As for color you will not go wrong with dark indigo jeans or even a black pair. To give a quick recommendation, Lee’s salvaged denim dark indigo jeans are ideal.

    It may surprise you but colored denim – provided it is the right fit and length – can work with black or dark brown dress shoes.

    The main thing to make sure of is that there is enough contrast between the shoes and the jeans so they do not appear to match exactly.

    2. Wear the right type of dress shoes


    It’s not just the jeans that play a part in making sure that your whole ensemble works.

    It is equally important to be mindful of the dress shoes that you choose.

    When picking out dress shoes select a pair that leans more on the casual side.


    Oxford shoes are great dress shoes but they are on the more formal end of the spectrum and will therefore not work with jeans.

    A better style to go with is the Blucher, Loafer or the Derby dress shoe style.

    The shape, construction and vamp placement of these shoes lend a more casual vibe than compared to Oxfords.

    Other options for shoes include monk straps, dessert boots, chukkas and slip-ons will work beautifully when paired with jeans.

    3. Balance other elements of your outfit


    Even though you’re wearing jeans – the fact you’ve thrown in dress shoes as your foundation means you need to elevate the whole look.

    A t-shirt or sweatshirt just isn’t going to cut it :)

    Balance out the look with a well-fitted collared button down or dress shirt.

    Keep your accessories simple.

    Consider completing your ensemble with a hat if you are confident that you can pull that off, and if wearing the above mentioned dress shirt consider a wool or woven necktie.

    Make sure that every element that you bring in to your ensemble matches with your chosen dress shoe.

    Warning – If you are a larger man be aware that dress shoes can make your feet appear smaller.

    Tread carefully with the dress shoe and jean combination especially if you have a bigger midsection.

    A solid solution would be to cover up the midsection with a beautifully cut sports jacket.

    This can bring balance back into the outfit and prevent you from appearing disproportionate.

  • king hassanking hassan south side somewherePosts: 22,132 ✭✭✭✭✭
    GettinLo wrote: »
    Great thread... a piece of advice.. Every time you buy a good pair of shoes, invest another $10-20 in a pair of Cedar Shoe trees... the trees 1) keep the shape to the shoe, 2) help minimize creases from setting in, 3) absorb sweat and odor

    I put caps on the toes and heels of my shoes as well
    Maximus Rexblakfyahking
  • 32DaysOfInfiniti32DaysOfInfiniti Posts: 4,083 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Ol' self conscious ass niggas... Just rock what you like, avoid athletic sneakers, shit that dont fit and polo shirts as formal attire and you are straight. There are no set in stone rules on what you can and cant wear
  • goldenjagoldenja Posts: 6,212 ✭✭✭✭✭
    got me a pair of stacy adams
  • _Goldie__Goldie_ ablackweb.com Posts: 30,257 Regulator
    Goat thread. You should post more shit like this in the sub forum if you havent already.
  • Maximus RexMaximus Rex Pulchritudo in Conspectu Regis The EmpreyanPosts: 6,355 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Goat thread. You should post more shit like this in the sub forum if you haven't already.

    When school is out I planned on going to through all of the videos at www.realmenrealstyle.com and taking the ones that would be the most relevant to laying the foundations of a wardrobe. Dude has done a lot of videos, so that particular thread probably be about three pages of videos, but after a cat has watched it, the viewer would have a basic idea of what his wardrobe should consist of and how his clothes should fit.

  • zombiezombie Posts: 13,450 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Not down with the Jeans and blazer combo
  • Maximus RexMaximus Rex Pulchritudo in Conspectu Regis The EmpreyanPosts: 6,355 ✭✭✭✭✭
    zombie wrote: »
    Not down with the Jeans and blazer combo

  • blakfyahkingblakfyahking The IC's Resident Father Figure Posts: 15,489 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Goat thread. You should post more shit like this in the sub forum if you havent already.

    cosign....t/s should do a thread about buying/wearing a suit next
  • Maximus RexMaximus Rex Pulchritudo in Conspectu Regis The EmpreyanPosts: 6,355 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Goat thread. You should post more shit like this in the sub forum if you havent already.

    cosign....t/s should do a thread about buying/wearing a suit next

    I think I did post some of his suit podcasts, but I since I'm with school I can go through then and put them all in one thread.

  • LPastLPast Posts: 4,395 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Do dress shirts next.
  • Maximus RexMaximus Rex Pulchritudo in Conspectu Regis The EmpreyanPosts: 6,355 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2014
    Ultimate Guide to Double Monk Strap Dress Shoes | How To Buy A Pair Of Double Monks | Monk-Strap Overview



    This informative article is brought to you by Paul Evans. I personally own a pair and highly recommend their quality shoes.

    They say that the most noticeable item a man wears can be found on his feet.

    Think about it, most men pay attention to the bigger portions of their body such as their upper torso and legs.

    However, it is the details that set apart a stylish man from a regular joe.

    One of the more popular shoes in menswear today is the double monk strap shoe.

    This is for good reason.

    The versatility of the double monk strap is second to none.

    It can be worn in multiple environments and in various settings. You will look equally sharp wearing them (with the right combination of course) in an important business meeting or a night out with your lady.

    I am going to take a deep dive into double monk strap shoes and will give you the scoop on how to wear them, what to look for when buying a pair, along with what to wear them with.

    The History of the Double Monk Strap


    Although popular today, few people realize how deep of a history the monk strap shoe really has.


    We are talking centuries here.

    The double monk strap shoe found great popularity in Europe. Specifically, the monks were most notably known to wear these shoes during this era, which resulted in the naming of the shoe. Monks wore these shoes for the additional level of protection they offered compared to the sandals they normally wore. The durability of these shoes made them the top choice for monks as their signature work shoe.

    Originally, The monk strap had a difficult time being placed in either the formal or casual ends of the shoe-wearing spectrum. Considered too casual to be worn with a suit and too formal for many casual environments.

    Moving right up to present day, this is the complete opposite. The double monk strap that can be found in menswear stores now are considered highly versatile and the shoe of choice for the stylish man.

    The Double Monk Strap Shoe Defined

    How do you define the double monk strap?

    First off, the most noticeable feature is the lack of lacing. Replacing the laces is a distinct combination of a dual strap and enclosing buckle that secures your feet within.

    Giving the shoe a once over in more detail, the Double Monk strap resembles a Derby style shoe based on the upper quarters overlapping the tongue of the shoe. The main different between the two is of course, the Derby has laces and the Double Monk Strap does not.

    Color Selections

    Color plays a key role into what you wear and how well it will look on you. The double monk strap comes in a variety of colors that really heighten its appearance.

    Coupled with the material of the shoe (which will be outlined below) you can create a look that can stand the test of time:

    Brown – A versatile color that ranges from light to dark shades. The great thing about brown is that you can wear it in pretty much any environment if you take black tie settings out of the picture.
    Oxblood / Burgundy – Rising in popularity, this shade pairs extremely well with a navy blue suit. The oxblood and Burgundy colors also look great with a pair of blue jeans
    Black – Not as popular as they once were, black is great in formal and semi formal occasions. I would recommend including a black pair of double monk straps to your collection if you do not already own them.
    Click here to view a selection of top quality men’s shoes from Paul Evans – a company I personally recommend.


    There really are only two types of material I would recommend for the double monk strap shoes and they are the following:

    Leather – Ultimately my top choice for the double monk strap. Stick with leather made in traditional European countries such as Italy, the UK or France.

    If the leather is made of high quality, your shoes will get better with age with proper care.

    There is nothing quite like a pair of shoes showing those subtle lines of age as the years go by.


    Suede – My second recommendation to consider purchasing is the suede double monk straps shoes.

    Although still considered leather, primarily made from the underlying skin of lamb, they should be listed under a different category.

    One thing to watch out for with suede shoes is their durability. Suede shoes shoe blemishes and absorb liquid very easily. Keep this in mind if you live in a climate that is prone to harsh conditions.

    How Do I Wear the Double Monk Strap?

    Like I have already mentioned, you can pretty much wear the double monk strap shoe in any environment.

    The first piece to cover is if you should wear the double monk straps with socks or no socks.

    Both can be acceptable depending on the environment:

    Socks: Wear socks if you are going to be in a more formal setting, especially if you work in the corporate world, meeting with clients or attending a gala event. Stick with black socks if wearing black monk straps and charcoal or grey when wearing brown and oxblood.

    No Socks: Beside the black version, wearing no socks works well with the double monk strapped shoes in casual environments. The only thing you have to ensure is you have a slight break at the end of your pants.

    When walking this will give a slight hint of your sockless sell and will not look out of line when you are sitting.


    Double Monks With A Suit?

    The double monk strap can work well in the most popular formal attire, the man’s suit.

    This assumes you’re wearing a more formal style of double monks, and that the occasion isn’t an interview or extremely formal event.

    When it comes to the black suit, only consider leather black double monk straps as any other color will not mesh well and suede will take away from the formality of black

    For charcoal and grey, a brown shade is ideal. Leather is still the acceptable form of material to be worn but suede is an acceptable alternative.

    Finally the navy blue suit works well with brown, burgundy and oxblood colors. Pair these with a matching watch strap and belt and you are on your way to looking sharp

    As far as the finish is concerned, look for something that is shiny to help your shoes stand out.
    Meesterking hassanbanginscrew901
  • Maximus RexMaximus Rex Pulchritudo in Conspectu Regis The EmpreyanPosts: 6,355 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2014
    Business Casual & Double Monks

    Remember when I mentioned how the double monk straps of yesteryear had a hard time of fitting in to formal or casual settings?

    Well, make no mistake that these shoes were in both instances and right in the middle, which is business casual.

    Here are my favorite combinations:

    Classic chinos and a navy blue cardigan over a white dress shirt. Once you throw on a pair of brown double strap monks, you will be the best dressed in the office. This combination goes well with or without a tie. If the weather starts to heat up, lose the cardigan and the tie and you have an entirely new look while maintaining a great look.

    Put a grey V-neck sweater over a white dress shirt and a pair of blue dress pants and you have a great match for your burgundy double monk strap shoes. You can up the formality of this look by including a tie.

    Light blue dress shirt and navy blue dress pants with no tie as an extra sharp look with a pair of double monk straps.



    Feel like going out with some friends and not in the mood to completely dress up, yet still want to stand out from the crowd? Wearing some double monk straps along with these casual combinations will make this a reality for you:

    A white V-neck t-shirt, blazer and blue jeans combination work well with a pair of brown suede double monk straps. I advice having the blazer tailored to fit your unique body type to make this look the most impactful. If you are really in the casual mood, lose the blazer and just wear the classic white t-shirt / blue jeans combo.

    Leather jacket – This casual staple for menswear jacks pair really well with double monk straps. Specifically, a black leather jacket and black double monk strap shoes work really well together. A great option if you want to wear black yet not seem formal.

    The key for all combinations is coordination and ensuring the color matches with your hair and skin tone. If you can nail this then the options are endless.

    Overall, the double monk strap is a beautiful shoe and one of my personal favorites. It is my go to piece when I am pondering what to wear on short notice.

    If you haven’t already, I would highly advice you include a few pairs for yourself. Trust me, you will be glad you did!


    This informative article is brought to you by Paul Evans – they make the beautiful Double Monk Strap Shoes you see in this article.

    I personally own a pair and highly recommend their quality shoes.
  • Maximus RexMaximus Rex Pulchritudo in Conspectu Regis The EmpreyanPosts: 6,355 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2014
    As I said in What Type of Boots Do Y'all Rock http://community.allhiphop.com/discussion/479420/what-type-of-boots-do-yall-rock#latest I had to get rid of Sorels because the ice and snow melt ate through the bottom of the bottoms. This article is on the proper footwear maintenance. The fact of the matter is dudes are paying to much money, (especially on winter footwear,) only to have to trash it after a season or two before of salt stains or the due of the acidity in the ice and snow melt has fucked up the bottoms of their boots. From my personal experience, your primary winter boots should be ones with replaceable soles. In the event that the sole wears out, you'll just replace the sole of the boot, as opposed to the entire boot, which is considerably cheaper.

    Waterproofing Your Shoes – A Man’s Guide to Weather Resistant Footwear

    A pair of well-made shoes are expensive; they become much more expensive, however, when you have to retire them early because you did not care for them properly. I recently learned this hard way when the leather on my favorite pair of Chelsea boots cracked. Although I had waterproofed them according to my “Texas” standards (weekly polish, twice a year waterproofing compound application), I learned rather painfully that this was woefully inadequate for a Wisconsin winter (think daily polish, weekly waterproofing or better yet wearing galoshes). Accidentally leaving them near my bedroom’s radiator didn’t help the situation either. In an effort to prevent my misfortune from becoming yours, I offer you this article on how to prevent rain, snow, and salt from damaging your shoes.
    Water Damaged Leather Shoes

    I’d like to thank Paul Herwaldt for his help on this article – he’s a 3rd generation cobbler who owns Shoe Repair Plus in Green Bay, WI. FYI, he performs shoe repair via mail at a fair price – highly recommended for those of you who do not have access to a local cobbler.

    Why Care About Weatherproofing Your Footwear?

    Water & Salt Damage is Expensive
    – Water can and will destroy the suppleness of your shoe’s leather; leather that would have withstood tens of thousands of flexes can have its life cut to a fraction of this. Leather is animal skin, most often cattle or horse, which is made up of fat and proteins that retain a set amount of moisture after being tanned. The fibers that criss-cross each other in the corium give leather its unique strength, but are also susceptible to drying out and cracking if not treated with care. You must minimize rapid influxes and releases of moisture and exposure to alkalines or acids, both of which can permanently damage the leather.
    Salt Stained Shoe

    In addition, salt and other harsh chemicals can stain leather. They are difficult to remove once they permeate the leather itself, and if left untreated will not only discolor but weaken the top layers and can damage the finish. A simple layer of waxy polish between the leather and these harmful elements could be the difference between a one minute cleaning versus a costly trip to the cobbler. Need to remove a salt stain? Visit the New York Shoe expert Leffot and their article on salt stain removal.

    Comfort –Wet feet are uncomfortable and most of us do not have the option of taking our shoes off and walking around in socks at work. Nothing can ruin a Monday morning presentation like cold wet feet and squeaking shoes. Why let something you can control become a distraction?

    How to Make Your Shoes Water Resistant

    Notice that I didn’t say waterproof. No amount of polish or “waterproofing” spray is going to keep out water if you are continuously subjecting your footwear to the elements. However, performing these steps are important as that they do provide short-term protection. Even the man who owns galoshes does not always have the luxury of having them handy when the weather takes a turn for the worse.

    1. Select a Waterproofing Compound

    There is a lot of debate on the subject of which waterproofing compound is best – not only are the brands fighting it out (as expected) but many shoe aficionado’s have their take as to which method and technique works the best. So please add your tips and suggestions in the comments!
    Meltonian Boot and Shoe Polish

    Wax-based polishes – Unlike shoe pastes and creams, which are designed more to nourish the leather, wax based polishes are made to create a shine and by doing so create a thin protective layer than can provide light resistance to water and salt. Manufacturers such as Lincoln make a good product, along with Meltonian who also provides their polish in a wide range of colors. The key to this type of protection is consistent application after every few wears, or every wear if the weather is particularly wet.

    Specialty waterproof compounds – Obenauf’s Heavy Duty Leather Preservative and Sno-Seal Weather Protectant are just two examples of waterproofing compounds whose main purpose is protection – they do a solid job when applied properly and have a longer sticking period than polishes. Unlike the above mentioned compounds, these protectants are not meant to create a shine but rather to seal out moisture; as such they may need to be used in conjunction with a polish once the seal has been set.

    Spray on waterproofing compounds – Of all the waterproofing techniques, this one receives the most amount of flack. Common arguments are that it doesn’t allow the leather to breath and that if the compound contains silicone it will dry out the leather. My stance is if ease of use is your concern, then it’s much better to use a spray on waterproofing than nothing at all. Companies such as Meltonian make a water & stain protector that in my experience is safe to use on leather and suede and will be dry and ready to use in 30 minutes. These waterproofing sprays should be used liberally, as I learned they lose their effectiveness after only a few wears. They are not meant to penetrate the leather, but rather form a protective coat on top of it.

    2. Test & Prepare for Waterproofing

    This next step is especially important for any shoe that is not black – you need to ensure the compound you have chosen does not change the appearance of the shoe. Do not assume that because the waterproofing compound manufacturer claims that it will not affect color that it won’t – you do not want to be the exception to the rule. Choose a discreet part of your shoe, such as the side of the shoe’s tongue under the laces, and apply a small amount to see how it reacts. After you are more confident, move to an area like the inner back of the shoe and test again. After a few hours you should be ready to move forward. If you haven’t already, remove the laces and thoroughly clean the shoe with a brush and rag to remove dirt.
    Applying the Protectant
  • Maximus RexMaximus Rex Pulchritudo in Conspectu Regis The EmpreyanPosts: 6,355 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2014
    Waterproofing Your Shoes – A Man’s Guide to Weather Resistant Footwear Pt. II

    3. Apply the Water Resistant Compound Evenly and Ensure a Barrier Is Formed

    The only difference in a waterproof compound application vs. a shining compound application is the attention you should pay to forming an unbroken seal. When shining your shoes you can spot shine on occasion – when waterproofing you need to ensure a water tight barrier is formed or the whole process is for naught.

    For a refresher on how to apply polish to your shoes visit this older AOM article on how to Shine Your Shoes like a Soldier or for a video check out Tim Broderick’s How to Shine and Condition Your Shoes.

    Choose the Right Footwear

    Beater Shoes
    – One option I hear often suggested in dealing with adverse weather is to wear shoes that you do not care about. The problem here is that this doesn’t deal with the situation of when you need to look professional and the weather outside is cold and wet. I personally would rather have the right equipment than have a pair of shoes whose sole purpose is to be ruined in bad weather.
    ECCO Berlin GTX

    Specialty Footwear – There are many companies that make solid footwear using water resistent materials such as gortex, synthetic leathers, and non-slip rubber soles. Although they are not on the same level as higher end men’s shoes and do not offer as much protection as galoshes, their stylish design and inclement weather durability make them a favorite among practical men. An example is the ECCO Berlin GTX - as you can see above, it’s large sole and open laced design make it a less dressy shoe than a classic oxford. But when it comes to not having to worry about the rain or snow and for the man who does not want to be hassled with multiple pairs of shoes, these are hard to beat.

    Boots – From hiking to work, boots are made to be tougher and are a great choice for inclement weather thanks to their height and ability to protect the ankles. Unfortunately they are limited in the range of clothing they can be worn with; anything dressier than odd trousers is stretching their boundaries. Although the dress boot has a wider range and can be worn with a mens suit, it provides less protection than its rougher brethren. Due to its more delicate sole and smaller heel you’ll have less clearance when traversing puddles and thus dress boots should be worn with as much care as dress shoes. With all that being said, all boots should be treated regularly with a waterproofing compound depending on the wearers environment and frequency of wear.
    A Sleek Overshoe by SWIM

    Galoshes – Galoshes are rubber footwear that slip over shoes and protect them from the elements. The term includes both over-shoes and over-boots, the difference being the amount of protection afforded the wearer. With a history of serving men (and women) for over 100 years, they have perfected the art of keeping the wearer dry by completely encapsulating the feet and as an added bonus often provide excellent traction. Their downside is that proper fit is a must and their additional weight can take some time getting used to – there are also the problems of where to store them and that they are often at home when that unexpected afternoon shower hits.

    A good pair of new galoshes can range in price from $20 to well over $150, the difference being durability and style although a very solid pair for occasional wear can be found for less than $30. Companies like Swim offer a wide range of durable and stylish galoshes online; for the man walking more than a quarter mile to work daily in wet weather these are one of the smarter purchases he can make.
    Galoshes & Traction

    What to Do When Your Shoes Are Already Wet?

    I’d like to end this article with the steps you should take in the case you do soak a pair of quality leather shoes. Because despite all of your planning, you’re bound to get caught in the rain once!

    Remove excess water from the outside of the shoe using a dry rag or towel.

    1. Pull the moisture from the inside of the shoe. This can be done with newspaper or a small dry towel.

    2. The key here is to draw the moisture out, so every hour or so replace the moist paper with dry paper. Depending on the extent of the soaking, this could take from 2 hours to 2 days.

    3. Do not place the shoes near a heat source; let them dry slowly at room temperature. If you heat them you will cause the moisture to leave too quickly and greatly increase the chance of the leather cracking. Cracked leather cannot be fixed on a man’s shoe or boot.

    4. Once the shoes appear dry and no more moisture is being drawn out of the shoe, clean and condition with a leather balm or cream and finally polish normally. Over the next week ensure you clean and polish after every wearing.

    Written by
    Antonio Centeno
    President, www.ATailoredSuit.com

  • Maximus RexMaximus Rex Pulchritudo in Conspectu Regis The EmpreyanPosts: 6,355 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2015


    King George VI is planning his annual summer retreat in his English country-side estate. There’s one snag in the plan. His shoe collection is void of footwear that is suitable for wearing indoors. He commissions the royal shoe makers to design a pair of slip-on shoes that are comfortable and yet stylish. The result? The loafer. This fictitious story created the mantra that loafers are traditionally a laid-back shoe. Over the years designers have modernized this casual slipper to achieve a higher level of formality.

    These VERSATILE and COMFORTABLE shoes combine the convenience of slip-on shoes with the formality of business clothes.



    All the loafers in this video were provided by Paul Evans.

    They are a great company with shoes handcrafted in Italy and designed in New York City.


    1. Ability to Slip On and Off

    2. . No Buckles or Laces

    3. A Casual Shoe by Nature

    4. The Use of a Wide Variety of Materials

    And the best part? You can wear them with or without socks.

    Four Defining Characteristics of a Dress Loafer

    If the slipper is the father, the moccasin is the mother of the loafer. Loafers now have a wide range of formality from casual to dapper. Each of the different styles are discussed in more detail below. Some of the defining characteristics of loafers are:


    1. The Penny Loafer

    In 1876, George Henry Bass introduced the Mocc, a soft leather moccasin. In 1936 the Bass Shoe Co adapted the design of a Norwegian fishermen moccasin style shoe and called it Weejun combining the words Norwegian and Injun. Weejuns are also referred to as penny loafers. The distinctive addition was a strip of leather across the saddle with a diamond cut-out.

    The shoes feature a distinctive semi-pocket on the vamp, a strip of leather across the saddle. The diamond cut-out was perfectly suited to store a penny to be used in case of an emergency, hence the namepenny loafer.

    Penny loafers are the most versatile loafers and are complementary to your outfit when combined with chinos, flannel pants, or corduroys.


    2. The Belgian Loaferbelgium loafers

    Belgian loafers are soft-soled slip on, elegant loafers with a small bow on the front. Originally produced as a slipper for indoor use, these soft-soled shoes are made using the meticulous turned method. The shoes are sewn inside-out and flipped once they are completed. This process ensures that each stitch on the shoe is flawless. The Belgian style has more of a slipper heritage rather than a moccasin heritage. Belgian falls under the casual formality similar to the Penny Loafer.


    3. The Tassel Loafer

    Tassel loafers will be the most casual of loafers.

    Dating back to around the 1950’s tassle loafers fall just below the Belgian loafer on the formality scale but are close cousins in design. Tassel loafers feature dangling leather tassels which decorate the top vamp of the shoe. Black or oxblood tassel loafers present the same level of formality as a navy-blue blazer and gray trouser combination.

    Originally designed as a wholecut style, the tassel loafer has a rounded toe outlined by a reverse seam. These loafers are often made of cordovan leather and have been known for their classic and timeless style, durability and versatility. Tasseled loafers are a winning choice when paired with chinos and a blazer.


    4. The Horsebit Or Gucci Loafer

    As the formality grew for loafers in the US, internationally they were still viewed as casual. It was uncommon to see loafers and suits worn together throughout the rest of the world. It wasn’t until the gucci (or bit) loafer was designed by the Italian powerhouse designer Gucci himself that it began to be accepted as a formal piece worldwide. Although many brands now make bit loafers, Gucci remains the originator of this design. The defining piece on the loafers is the gleaming snaffle or metal bar that looks like a horse’s bit, in the centre of the vamp.

    The bit loafer in black leather presents a fine option for suits, however it doesn’t climb all the way to a black or white tie affair.

    Loafer Materials – Suede or Leather?

    Most types of loafers are made of either leather or suede. Leather loafers are suitable for smarter looks, either with a full suit or a tailored outfit. Suede loafers present a more casual approach. It is best to reserve suede loafers for the spring and summer months. They should be protected from moisture at all times. Leather loafers are sturdier than suede loafers and will also wear well over the years.


    How Should Loafers Fit?

    The comfort of your shoes is determined largely by how your feet fit in them. Since loafers can be worn without socks, avoid wearing thick socks when trying them on at the shop. It is generally advised to buy one size down when the intention is to go sockless in a pair of quality leather loafers.

    Measure your foot from the back of the heel to the tip of the big toes.

    Different manufacturers have different sizing standards – having your actual measurement handy is helpful in comparing sizes from various brands.


    Pairing Dress Loafers With Clothes

    Although the rules for pairing shoes with suits have relaxed in the past decade, it is best to choose slip-on shoes with an appropriate level of formality. Ensure the loafers have a high vamp and a heel.

  • Maximus RexMaximus Rex Pulchritudo in Conspectu Regis The EmpreyanPosts: 6,355 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2015
    Ultimate Guide to Formal Loafers Pt. II

    How do you pair loafers with your clothes?
    • A laid-back evening – Jeans in a medium to dark wash and a button-down shirt . Undo a button or two and roll up the sleeves. Penny loafers would work best with this attire.
    • A date night – Dress up a polo shirt by pairing it with a navy blazer and a brown suede Belgian loafers.
    • Avoid gaudy – Be careful not to allow gold or silver decorations on the upper to become so gaudy that they distract attention from your outfit by drawing the eyes to your shoes.
    • With suits – Most Italian style loafers are too sleek and lightweight for American-style suits. Ensure the dress loafer you pair with suits has a thick sole and a heel. The horsebit loafers are perfect for this.
    • Loafers and shorts – Avoid pairing loafers with shorts.
    • Socks or no socks – This is a matter of personal preference. Socks with loafers can add visual appeal, but they are not necessary. Allow the weather and occasion to make the choice for you.


    Loafer Color Choices

    The wide variety of loafer styles and range of colors can make the process of choosing a pair slightly tricky. Unless you are trying to make a fashion statement, stay with conservative colors – brown, black, navy and gray. These are the most versatile colors and will match most outfit combinations. The traditional color for dress loafers is black. Brown and oxblood are however, more versatile than black.

    What About the Monk Strap?

    You may be asking about another common slip-on shoe, the Monk Strap. Does it fall into the loafer family? The lack of laces resembles the common characteristic of the loafer, however it falls on a totally different part of the casual to formal scale. Why? Well we wrote a great article that talks about this shoe. Read all about the history and more in The Ultimate Guide to Double Monk Strap Dress Shoes.

    Final Words

    Loafers straddle up and down the casual to formal scale, making this a staple for every man’s wardrobe. There are some who believe that wearing a loafer increases the leg line. The shoes make a man taller as a result of the legs appearing longer. If you are on your feet a lot during the day, a combination of quality and comfort is essential for your footwear. Shoes are no place to skimp on quality. Loafers have practically taken the shoe industry by storm in recent times because men all over the world appreciate the convenience and comfort they offer.

    If you pride Italian leather and shoemakers combined with a New York-inspired design, take a look at PAUL EVANS.

    The NEW YORK label has been cranking out stylish men’s loafers and dress shoes made from quality leather and crafted by skilled artisans in Naples, Italy.

  • Maximus RexMaximus Rex Pulchritudo in Conspectu Regis The EmpreyanPosts: 6,355 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited May 2016



    Black shoes and a black suit work great if you’re going to a funeral, but most of the time we’re a little more colorful in our wardrobes.

    How does a man wearing a navy, light-grey, or brown suit match his shoes with the suit color?

    That’s what this article is about!

    Take a moment to get to know the following chart.

    It pairs the five most common suit colors — navy, medium or mid-gray, charcoal, brown, and black — with three different shoes to show you which colors work with which leathers.


    Now, are these shoe matching rules absolute?

    Not entirely — but it’s a very safe guide to follow.

    If you’re bucking the advice here, it should be because you’re going for a really unique look or you know the rules and make a conscious decision to ignore them!

    For example, we don’t have the burgundy shoes paired with a black suit. But a rocker might wear a black suit with red Converse All-Stars, and that would be, if not exactly timeless men’s style, certainly a style choice that could work.

    There are going to be exceptions.

    But there aren’t many of them, and if you’re sticking to classic business and business-casual dress, let this chart be your guide.

    Most of the time it’s not too hard.

    Strict business formality is easy — a charcoal gray or navy blue suit and plain black shoes.

    But as the suits (and the business climate) become more relaxed, you get the option of wearing different colors of leather with them. That’s a stumbling block for a lot of men — and the wrong color of shoes and belt can ruin even a fine suit.


    Here’s how most of these combinations play out in practical, day-to-day dress:

    1. Navy Blue Suits


    Pair with:

    • Black shoes
    • Brown shoes
    • Red or burgundy shoes

    Navy can go comfortably with all three of the main color families of men’s leather shoes. You can probably even make a navy suit work with more exotic colors if you have them, although blue is generally too close to make a good contrast.

    The leather color mostly affects the formality and attitude of a navy suit. Black shoes are

    Black shoes are business dress, while brown are more relaxed, and red or burgundy give it the most playful, social feel.

    Navy can go comfortably with all three of the main color families of men’s leather shoes. You can probably even make a navy suit work with more exotic colors if you have them, although blue is generally too close to make a good contrast.

    The leather color mostly affects the formality and attitude of a navy suit. Black shoes are

    Black shoes are business dress, while brown are more relaxed, and red or burgundy give it the most playful, social feel.


    2. Medium And Light Gray Suits

    16-1-lPair with:

    • Black shoes
    • Brown shoes
    • Red or burgundy shoes

    Medium gray suits are less formal than navy suits, and share a similar flexibility. You can pair them effectively with just about any color of leather.

    In the case of medium gray, black is the best option when you’re wearing a white shirt and a necktie.

    It’s still not proper business dress (the suit itself is too light), but it’s quite typical in offices where suits are mandatory but somewhat relaxed. Brown and burgundy shoes make it more of a casual/social look, and work best when the shirt has a bit of pattern or color to it as well.


    3. Brown Suits

    16-21-lPair with:

    • Brown shoes
    • Red or burgundy shoes
    Do not pair with:
    • Black shoes
    Take a caveat here — brown suits work with most brown shoes. You want a visible contrast between the color of the shoe leather and the color of the suit. If they’re identical or almost-identical, it looks off.

    Apart from that, brown’s great with most casual leather shoes. It’s generally better to have the shoe leather darker than the suit (helps keep the eye from being drawn downward), but either way can work so long as you have a clear contrast.


    4. Charcoal Grey Suits

    16-3-lPair with:

    • Black shoes
    • Burgundy shoes
    Do not pair with:
    • Brown shoes
    Here’s where we get to our first firm “no” on the list: don’t pair charcoal suits with brown shoes.

    Dark browns look like you’re trying for a close match and coming up short.

    Light browns are too informal, and draw the eye jarringly downward. Plain black works best, or a deep burgundy for a look that’s relaxed but still elegant.


    5. Black Suits

    16-6-lPair with:

    • Black shoes
    Do not pair with:
    • Brown shoes
    • Burgundy shoes
    Black’s not very flexible. That’s why we generally recommend charcoal gray or navy blue in its place as a first suit. If you own one, pair it with black shoes, and save the outfit for funerals and strict business dress occasions.

    Any other color of shoe is going to look too casual with black.

    Other Colors

    The chart at the top is built around the most common colors of suit and leather dress shoes.

    You’ll probably end up with more colors of suit/trouser than just those five, and more colors of shoe than those three. That especially gets true once you start wearing leather shoes with casual trousers (like jeans), or dress suits with casual shoes (like canvas sneakers).

    Experiment and find out what works for you. The more casual the outfit, the less strict the rules, so if you’re doing something deliberately convention-defying (like the rocker example we used at the start), don’t sweat it too much. If it looks good in the mirror, go with it, and don’t worry whether it’s “right” or not.

    As with all colors, the most important thing to remember is to avoid things that are close but not quite matching. Those are the worst-looking clashes — it looks like you tried for a unified outfit and screwed it up a little. Keep the contrast clear and you should be fine.

  • Maximus RexMaximus Rex Pulchritudo in Conspectu Regis The EmpreyanPosts: 6,355 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited May 2016



    Yet Subtly Stylish.

    This is how I describe the semi-brogue.

    Why is subtle important?

    Because it allows for versatility and interchangeability.

    Semi-Brogues are the perfect balance between being noteworthy and refined.

    Decorative enough to attract compliments, but conventional enough to wear repeatedly.

    Ever wanted to get away with wearing the same shoes every day?

    The semi-brogue allows you to do just that.

    These shoes are perhaps the perfect business casual shoe.

    Historically, “brogue” refers to the perforations on a shoe that were originally intended to drain water from the feet of peasant workers in the Highland marshes of Scotland and Ireland.

    That’s right, these were the original crocs!

    In the present, the perforations are strictly aesthetic.

    This educational article is brought to you by my friends Paul Evans. I personally own 9 pairs of their high quality men’s leather shoes, including their signature semi-brogue style, the Brando.


    Basic characteristics of the brogue shoe:
    • Low heels.
    • Toe caps.
    • Heel caps.
    • Lace panels.
    • Decorative perforations (brogueing).

    Over time, various designs of brogues have evolved although only a few grabbed mainstream attention.

    The most available brogue styles include the full brogues, semi brogues, quarter brogues and long-wing brogues. The distinguishing factor in each style is the toe-cap.

    The full brogue has a winged toecap, hence the name wingtips. A semi brogue has a straight toecap.

    • Quarter brogues – The toecap seam on quarter brogues are lined with decorative perforations, with no other brogueing on the shoe.
    • Semi-brogues – The only brogueing on the shoe is on the seams of the toe cap, vamp, and heel.
    • Full brogues – The perforations decorate the wingtip-like toecap, along the seams and often on the body of the wings which cover the entire shoe.
    • Longwing brogues – Similar to full brogues, except that the wings meet at the back of the shoe, forming a complete circuit of the shoe.

    Any or all of these can also sometimes (but not necessarily) feature decorative edging or serrations along the seams, particularly the toecap seam.

    The focus of this article is the semi-brogue, or half-brogue style – perhaps the perfect business casual shoe.


    • Dark colored plain Oxfords – Formal, suitable for black-tie events in the right color and style.
    • Wholecut shoes – Arguably the best dress shoe. Memorable for their sophisticated style.
    • Semi brogue – Perhaps the most versatile business casual shoe. You can dress it up with a suit or wear it with jeans and a polo shirt.
    • Wingtips – The fancier version of brogues. The extra broguing makes them less formal.
    • Chukka boot – A sleek casual boot that is more at home with smart denim trousers.
    • Loafers – Suited for smart casual outfits, it is possible to dress them up in certain styles.
    • Driving shoes – Designed for leisure wear, these are the most casual leather shoes for men.


    What Are Semi-Brogue Or Half brogue Shoes?

    The half-brogue was made famous by the legendary John Lobb, who introduced the shoe as an Oxford in 1937.

    The style was produced to offer clients a middle ground between the bold design of a full brogue and the rather plain quarter brogue.

    Characterized by a toe-cap, a semi-brogue shoe has decorative perforations and serration along the cap’s edge, along with additional perforations on the heel and often times the center of the toe cap.

    The Paul Evans semi-brogues opted for no additional broguing in the center of the toe cap, however it is still classified as a semi-brogue because of the heel perforations.

    The perforations on a semi brogue cover the entire toe cap’s edge. The unfussy decoration is appealing and adds classic simplicity to your outfit.

    These are shoes that subtly add to the overall stylishness of your outfit without attracting too much attention to your feet.


    Formality Of Semi-Brogues

    Until the early 1900’s, brogues were considered a casual shoe. Traditionally, they were designed to be outdoor footwear.

    Brogues were not intended for casual or business occasions. Over time, they were adapted as walking shoes for country gentlemen.

    The modern use of perforations solely for decorative purposes has allowed the brogue to be viewed as business casual and in some cases, even formal footwear.

    The formality of a brogue is inversely proportional to the broguing.

    A shoe is less formal the more broguing it has. Semi-brogues are more formal than full brogues.


    How to Wear Half Brogue Shoes

    Semi brogue shoes provide the ideal balance between simplicity and fancy decorations.

    Since semi brogues occupy the middle ground between the plainer design of a quarter brogue and the extravagance of a full brogue, they are suited for both business and casual occasions.

    The lighter weight of the half brogue makes it a more elegant choice than a full brogue, while escaping the stark formality of a plain or quarter brogue oxford.

    • Classic colors for semi brogues are brown, oxblood and black.
    • In oxblood and darker brown colors like chestnut brown, semi brogues are a versatile option and can be worn with a sports jacket or a brown suit.
    • Pair your semi brogues with jeans, chinos and moleskin trousers in a casual setting.
    • Every variation of blue blends perfectly with the brown semi-brogue


    Materials For Half Brogues

    Brogues are most commonly made of box calf leather, with varieties now produced in other kinds of leather, including suede.

    The half brogue style is best presented in a smooth or uniform leather that makes the broguing shine.

    Exotic leathers are not suited for brogues as the grain tends to overpower the decorative perforations.

    Final Words

    Whether you are a ‘jeans and polo’ kind of guy, or your preference leans towards sports jacket and colored suits, a pair of semi brogue oxford is a versatile pick.

    Dress it up. Dress it down. These shoes are the perfect foundation to build a smart business casual outfit.

    Looking to purchase a quality pair of leather semi-brogue shoes?

    Check out Paul Evans for more styles of classic shoes designed in New York and hand-made in Italy.

  • banginscrew901banginscrew901 Posts: 6,140 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I always thought it was ok to wear loafers with shorts. I'll keep that in mind this summer
  • Bcotton5Bcotton5 Posts: 51,145 ✭✭✭✭✭
    damn I need this thread, starting a new job working in a office setting, need some business casual type shoes for work

    any recommendations?
  • Maximus RexMaximus Rex Pulchritudo in Conspectu Regis The EmpreyanPosts: 6,355 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited June 2016
    Bcotton5 wrote: »
    damn I need this thread, starting a new job working in a office setting, need some business casual type shoes for work

    any recommendations?

    Bruh, didn't you read the thread? There's a post on business causal shoes on this thread. Dudes be hella slow sometimes.
  • Bcotton5Bcotton5 Posts: 51,145 ✭✭✭✭✭
    bought some semi brogues from payless lmao
    Maximus Rexking hassanonetoughmiracle
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