Loafers For Men
Primarily loafers are slip on shoes that does not require lace or fastenings. Mostly made of suede or leather and is shaped like a moccasin with flat heel. The journey for loafers began as a casual shoe but today it is being worn with a variety of outfits for many occasions including formal. It is being described as versatile and comfortable shoes which combines the convenience of slip on shoes with formality of business clothing.
So the defining characteristic of loafers are:
- Casual shoes by nature
- Ability to slip on and off
- Using wide variety of materials
- No lace or buckles
Most loafers are made of suede or leather. Both have their pros and cons
- Suede loafers- It is an excellent option as suede adapts amazingly. It has its own texture lending the overall dimension to your shoes. Best for semi formal look as it is neither too formal or too casual. Choose a suede loafer in brown or black for winter months and lighter colour like pale blue for summer. Keep your suede shoes clean and treat them with protecting sprays before wearing them.
- Leather loafers- The classic material the loafers are usually made of. These loafers are sturdier than suede ones. It looks great for casual or smart outfit.
Basic Loafer Types
- Penny loafer- A classic staple, the penny loafer is stylish minimal shoe. These shoes became popular in 1930’s when school and college students would stuff pennies into the slit on the strap of the shoe. Also referred as Weejun. The shoe features a semi pocket on vamp with a strip of leather across the saddle. So the diamond shape cut was perfect for storing a penny and hence the name.
This shoe is versatile and adds sophistication to your look from workwear to casual setting. It goes well with flannel pants, corduroys and chinos.
- Belgian loafers- Elegant loafers with soft soled slip on with a small bow on front. These shoes were originally produce as slippers for indoor use. These soft sole shoe are made using the precise turned method, that is shoes are sewn inside out and flipped once they are complete. The stitching is flawless. They can be worn for semi formal to casual wear.
- Tassel loafer- The most casual loafer falling just below Belgian loafer on formality scale but not in design. These loafers are characterised by dangling leather tassels decorated on top vamp of shoe. Clean, simple the playfulness of tassels is perfect for your wardrobe. The tassel loafer has round toe outline by reverse seam. They are usually made of cord or leather that is synonymous with versatility, durability and classic style. Suede is too an excellent choice giving you freedom for adapting to different dress code. Pair it with chinos, blazer tassel loafer goes well in shades of navy, khaki, brown and beige.
- Horsebit or Gucci Loafer- The characteristic of these loafers is gleaming snaffle or metal bar that looks like horse’s bit in the center of vamp. Originally designed by Italian designer Gucci and is said to be patronised by US President John F Kennedy. While choosing these loafers stick to classic approach in material and colour. Leather being the best bet combine with slim fit chinos and dress shirt. Though a acceptable for formal but not for black and white tie affair.
The huge variety of style and wide range of colour makes the process of choosing the humble pair of loafers confusing.
While there are no fixed set of rules, neutrals like brown, grey and black works well with almost all outlook. Black is classic , dusty brown loafers suit broad range of palettes and goes well with casual and dressed up look. Navy is a good hue and works well to complement colours like emerald green, beige and white. Burgundy is another surprisingly versatile colour and will brighten up your wardrobe.
As shoes are functional and not decorative, comfort should be the key factor in your choice. This in turn largely depends on how you feet fits in them.
As loafers are worn with and without socks choose your preference. It is advised to buy one side down when you prefer going sockless in a pair of quality leather loafers and vice versa with socks.
Measure your foot from back to heels to tip of your big toes. As different manufacturers have different size standards so your actual measurements is helpful.
These shoes are not over fitted in heels making them easy to wear and take off. As it does not require tying or lacing it is a big benefit for people lacking flexibility to tie their shoes.
- Formal- Choosing loafers for formal is to choose right material like leather. Patent leather in timeless colours like black adds dimension to your formal look while keeping things classic. You can even opt for texture loafer that emphasis your shoes. LR designers pick is quality velvet loafers that will dress up your look adding depth and at the same time is classic and luxurious too.
- Semi formal- It is best to choose classic colours to go with your staple trousers and dress shirts. Loafers go well with classy blazers. But keep the tone of your outfit in same colour. Suede works well for vogue dress codes. Ensure your clothes are well tailored. If you want some colour in semi formals go for cobalt blue, emerald green or cherry red loafers but style carefully. Pair bright loafers with subdue classic tone like whites and navies.
- Casual- Lightweight texture loafers and suedes are perfect for casual look. Another best way to wear loafers for casual look is trying summery colours like powder blue and green. The tip is to make sure that they are not too formal or dressed up.
- Loafers with jean- Denims are staple for man’s wardrobe because of its versatility. Pairing loafers with jeans instead of sneakers will spontaneously elevate your look to a more polished appearance. Pair it with cotton shirt or roll neck sweater instead of simple tee. LimeRoad designers pick is blue loafer with jeans and a jumper or checked blazers.
Penny or tassel loafers complement the ruggedness of jeans and make the best pair.
- Loafers with pants- Wearing trousers with shirt and blazer or full suit, loafers can make excellent footwear. The laid back but luxurious shoes can perfect for formal dressing with flair. Ensure that the loafer you pair with suits have high vamp and thick sole. Usually the horse bit loafers are perfect match for it.
- Loafers with chinos- Both loafers and chinos exhibits relax but aesthetic wear. So when combined they achieve exceptional casual, smart look. It is perfect for semi formal day events like lunch meetings. Complete the look by adding blazer, dress shirts or a tie.
- Loafers with socks- This style speaks of more classy or traditional look. Use monochrome colours and correspond or coordinate the colour and pattern to your clothing choice. This will ensure uniform or refined look as opposed to being messy.
- Loafers without socks- The no socks look appears clean, relaxed and minimal. When choosing no socks your clothes should be properly tailored. Go for short length trousers as it will shift the attention to loafer style.
Tips On Wearing Loafers
- Suede loafers adapts extraordinarily well cause they can be dressed up and down.
- Patent leather loafer adds dimension to your formal look.
- Penny loafers are the most versatile pair of shoes that you can wear with many outfits.
- Loafers go well with classy blazers when you keep the tone of your outfit in the same colour palette.
- Loafers without socks looks clean and minimalist.
Loafer shoes are best defined by understanding its function for most occasions and dress code. Men should stock up the best loafer brand and try various combination with dress wear. Loafers for men are fashion staple that add a Midas touch of casual- smart style to your outfit. As loafer is perfectly described as the slipper is the father, the moccasin is the mother of loafer.
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