Easy and Elegant Life

The Search for Everyday Elegance and the Art of Living Well.

Feet Don’t Fail Me Now



One of the little things that sets my teeth on edge is seeing an otherwise decently dressed man in a pair of sub-par shoes. The topic is on my mind as I couldn’t find my black tassel loafers this morning and had to make do with another style. The shoes were not of the bicycle toe variety. (The AE model above is one of two that I find least offensive. The other is a J&S, I think. But, I just don’t get them.) Nor were they of the boating shoe ilk; I was dressed in a sport coat and odd trousers, after all.

I have any number of classically styled shoes that are more than 25 years old, and they have, in that time, glided effortlessly over the waves of fashion. Here are, in no particular order, the shoes that will stand the test of time unless you choose to buy them in exaggerated styles (think very pointy, square-toed, etc.) All of the following pair very nicely with sports coats/odd trousers and suits:

The plain toe Blucher or Oxford;

The cap-toe Blucher or Oxford;

The semi-brogue cap toe;

The full brogue (wingtip, both the long and the short winged versions);

The moc toe slip on;

The Venetian slip on;

The monkstrap;

The Chelsea boot or paddock boot;

The tassel loafer.

What would you add?

3 thoughts on “Feet Don’t Fail Me Now

  1. Dear Chris,
    The wing tip is fine as long as it is in one color… Mephisto also has one of the best in comfort and elegance.
    Oh, those sub-par shoes can kill any outfit! You are so right on that. We were taught in the Old World that your hair, your shoes and your nails (manicure) did speak volumes about you! Guess that still applies and for both; men and women.
    My husband still keeps his stylish, smooth (non perforated leather) Nettleton shoes and they never will go out of style.
    Great posting as always!

  2. Chris,
    I could not agree with you more. The only thing I could add to what you have written is that any shoe, no matter how classic, needs to be polished and the sole needs to be edged. The Marine Corp drummed that into me 40 years ago and I have continued that tradition. I am often complemented on the look of my shoes. Polish is cheap and a scuffed and ugly pair of shoes says a lot about the person wearing them.

    Thanks again for another well written article.

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