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Good Shoes Take You Good Places



By Sonam Poddar Hissaria

Amidst all that hustle, bustle and excitement, you forgot that one minor but important thing. Shoes.


A great shoe can really make or break almost any look.  Whether you’re heading to that all important business meeting, being dragged to yet another wedding this fall  or are asked to a last minute black-tie event, your shoes and the condition of your shoes, are of the utmost importance. This season we’re seeing a ton of two-tone dress shoes in black and blue and so many shades of brown we’re obsessing over.

The Brogue

Like so many types of shoes, the brogue was conceived as a far more utilitarian shoe than the way we wear it today. The holes and perforations in brogues were originally there to help drain water after crossing bogs and swamps in muddy Ireland. Today, we think of the brogue with a little more respect. Hopefully, you won’t find yourself knee-deep in muck when wearing them.

For versatility, we suggest a pair of half brogues (perforated toecap, but no wings). Opt for dark brown brogues for formal occasions and lighter brogues for casual days. Black brogues work best with a suit but don’t get carried away and wear them to a black tie event. When buying brogues remember as a rule of thumb, the more broguing on the shoe, the less formal it is.

 



The Suede Chukka

Chukkas have surged back in popularity over recent years, having first become popular in the ‘40s. The shoe is a minimal, round-toe, ankle-high boot with just two or three lacing eyelets. Traditionally featuring just two panels, the style is not big on embellishments. Reject over-the-top trimmings, a suede pair of chukkas lets the texture of the shoe do it’s talking.

We suggest opting for a pair of tan or cream suede chukkas as the next addition to your wardrobe. These shoes find themselves at a more casual end of the pool, offering an elegant alternative to sneakers. Combine chukkas with a pair of jeans or chinos and a polo shirt for the best look. They also give you a safe option to dress down an outfit that threatened to become too formal with brogues. By combining a pair of chukkas with a sports jacket, you can make your outfit appear more approachable.

The Leather Boot

It is hard to pinpoint one style of men’s leather boots as the must-have for all wardrobes. The range of ankle high boots is so varied that one could become carried away and develops a boot-buying habit. Few shoes can convey as much personality as the boot. The great thing about a leather boot is with continued wear, the shoe begins to tell a story. While we don’t suggest wearing boots that are falling apart and covered in mud, well-worn pair of creased leather boots have their own character.

 



A pair of leather lace-up boots is a must-have addition to every man’s winter wardrobe. Opt for an ankle-high, black or dark brown boot and cuff your pants for a casual, edgier aesthetic. You can also pull your trousers over the top of the boots for a more conservative look. Invest in a quality pair and they will last you years, and begin to tell their story.

The White Low Top Trainer

If you are going for a more casual look, we cannot thumb our noses at a simple pair of white low top trainers. While we will never condone the high-top ‘sneans’ that were popularised by dads everywhere, we do think a minimal pair of sneakers is a must-have for all men.

White low tops are perfect when styled with black jeans for a monochromatic look. A minimal pair of white trainers is fantastic at portraying a casual yet neat look for when boots or chukkas are too much.

The Loafer

Originally, of Scandinavian origin, the loafer has developed into the sartorial styling of preppy culture and is now a streamlined shoe style. Low and lace-free, loafers are a mainstay of smart casual dress and are a favourite shoe style for summer months.

A pair of brown loafers will suit a range of palettes and will work for both casual and formal looks. Navy is also a good colour to consider and works well to complement tones like whites, beige and greens. Burgundy is also a great colour and can work well to brighten up your wardrobe. If you are after a pair of loafers to suit neutrals, beige will work well, and complements tanned skin. Classic loafers are amped up with snazzy finishes such as embellishment, studding or sequins.

 



The Oxford

The Oxford is characterised by its closed lacing unlike the open lacing system of the Derby shoe. The design was originally a plain shoe made of leather, but over the years, it has evolved and now includes a broad range of fabrics and detailing.

Most men already own a good pair of black Oxfords, which they wear for occasions that are more formal; however, this shoe also looks great in a tan colour for casual events. Oxford and derby laceups have a more casual feel with soles that have contrasting color pops this season.

Sandals and Sliders

As much as men like to pride themselves on their function-first approach to style, when it comes to sandals and sliders, that straight-talking male logic suddenly malfunctions. However, sandals and sliders have had a high-end makeover this season. Designers are reinventing them in an array of luxe designs, from Gucci’s tiger print canvas sliders to Valentino’s black leather studded sandals. Just don’t – despite whatever you saw a model in some magazine wearing – try wearing them with socks.

Men’s shoe trends change at a pace that’s more baby steps than seismic shifts. Sure, weekly trainer drops can put spikes in the graph but, by and large, what you slide your feet into this season won’t be massively different to what you lace up the next. So let’s consider some rules to follow when you are investing in a good pair of formal shoes especially for your wedding!

Keeping it casual

It’s not unheard of for a groom to wear Converse or Vans on big day. You can’t beat the elegance of a good leather shoe, but if your heart is set on casual, at least make sure your wedding shoes are sparkling clean.

 



Material

The basic features of your shoes should be black, leather and lace-up. When it comes to the soles, if possible, go for leather rather than rubber. You may think there isn’t a difference, but believe us, it’s a little thing that will make your shoe look more sophisticated.

If you’ve invested in a brand new pair, before the wedding, be sure to wear your shoes around the house for a few days after you buy them – this way you’ll soften and break them in, which means less chance of sore feet and blisters on your big day. Also, remember to scuff the soles a little so you don’t slip.

 



Colour

While black is the main recommendation, technically, if you’re keeping it traditional and classy, you have two options here – black or brown. A black shoe is considered preferable when wanting to create a formal look. Regardless of whether you’re wearing a suit, tuxedo or morning dress, if your formalwear is dark in colour (excluding navy) you should wear black shoes.

For navy blue suits, a medium-to-dark brown should be worn. This shoe also suits a more casual outfit, like chinos, a shirt and suspenders. Other colour varieties are also available if you’re working this casual look, from burgundies to deep greens. Just because something is traditional, it doesn’t mean you have to do it!

Brown slip-ons- A man is not complete with his beard alone, he needs a perfect pair of shoes too. The brown slip-ons will never fail in giving a man's personality a dashing appearance. They can be clubbed with any Indian wear be it kurta, indo-western or a bandi suit provided the trouser has to be in ankle fit, only then it will compliment the shoes. Most suitable under bright colours during daywear.

 



Black Woven Slip-Ons- A classic blend of a semi-formal and a casual slip-on, crafted thoroughly to give an elegant finish. The weaving allows a man to pair these up with traditional wear and also with slim-fit casual suits. These slip-ons are most suitable for Indian weddings as they are very comfortable as it has a rubber sole that helps a man to dance with ease without hurting his feet. A go-to pair for all your traditional needs.

Despite the fact that your footwear will complete your wedding look, they’ll also make your saali’s go oh! Wow during the jutti chupaai ritual. After all, you woudn’t wanna see them your shabby shoes, right dear groom?

About the Author: Sonam Poddar Hissaria owner of www.shaadietyadi.com and author of ‘The Great Indian Wedding Planner’

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