Dress Shoe Styles: Lace-ups
Shoes are the most functional item in any man's wardrobe
and they are considered to be an accurate
indicator of his sense of style and social position.
The overall style and weight of your shoe should be in harmony with your clothes. For example, fine lightweight Italian loafers work well with the sleekness of very fitted European suits but look way too light-weight when worn with boxy and straight American styled suits. These call for a plain, straight tip or Oxford lace-up.
Shoes must always be comfortable, and that means from the first moment you put them on. Some men believe that shoes need to be broken in. This may have been true a century ago, but today there are so many styles, sizes and brands to select from today that this is no longer the case. Keep in mind that the softer the leather, the more it will stretch, so a little snugness is acceptable, even advisable (shoes such as loafers can stretch up to a half size). However, snugness doesn't hurt. If the shoes hurt when you try them on, leave them and search for another pair. Once the shoe is on, you should be able to wiggle your toes without feeling the top of the inside of the shoe and your heel should sit snugly against the back.
The most versatile colour for business shoes is black because it coordinates with black, charcoal and navy suits. Brown shoes to be worn only with brown or earth-toned suits, while cordovan can be worn with charcoal, navy or grey suits. Avoid business shoes in navy, grey or any trendy colours.
You should own at least three pairs of business shoes and several that are casual. This will give you the ability to rotate your business shoes and allow them time to rest. Rest- ing shoes makes a significant difference in how long they will last; leather absorbs moisture, and a day of rest allows them to dry out and return to their original shape. By wearing the same shoe day in and day out, the perspiration will build up and rot the shoe from the inside out. Shoe trees can increase the life of your shoes by up to two years. They not only assist in the drying out process but also maintain the correct shape of the shoe. Leather shoes require regular polishing and if also waxed they will be more resistant to water damage. Keep a wary eye out for signs of wear and tear, and have your shoes repaired well before the problem becomes urgent.