You need a new pair, so you go out there do a quick search, tons of options. You got options, but maybe not these many options because you’ve got all these different types of dress shoes in front of you. You’ve got monk straps, you’ve got loafers, you’ve got Balmoral oxford, you’ve got Derbies and you’re trying to figure out what is the right style for you, which is going to fit the formality of the suit or which one is going to be more casual to be able to dress down with jeans.
The purpose of today’s blog is to break out those dress shoes to explain to you the difference in formality so that you can buy the right pair for you. First off, let's talk about the the factors which are going to affect most shoes in terms of their level of formality.
I. Build of the Shoe
The general rule here is the simpler the more elegant the build, the more formal the shoe is going to be.
As you start to add complexities onto the build of the shoe, it becomes more casual.
II. Lacing Systems
The Closed Lacing System is viewed as more formal, due to its elegant simplicity.
An open lacing system often times seen with a Derby is considered a little less formal.
The most formal of all the colors is going to be black, after that other dark colors like dark brown, oxblood. Those are going to be formal, not as formal as black, but they are still formal. And what you're going to see is as the colors get lighter, so as we go maybe to a medium gray, we start going to a white, we go to a light gray, all of those are going to be more casual
If we see a smooth leather that can be polished this is going to be the more formal.
Now, if you start to see something like a suede, this is going to be more casual.