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HOW TO: WEAR DRESS SHOES

03.03.16

Dressing for a wedding can be a sartorial minefield. Firstly, there are vaguely prescriptive dress codes to decipher, and even if you’re able to work out what constitutes as appropriate or inappropriate dress, there’s the confusing task of colour matching everything to contend with. Start from the ground up we say. Here we've selected five pairs of our best wedding-ready dress shoes and show you how to build your look around them, according to the type of wedding that you’re attending. All that’s left for you to do is make sure that you turn up on time.

If you see the words black tie on your wedding invite, only top-tier formality will do. Unsurprisingly, a black bow tie is a good place to start. But, what of your footwear? If you want to make the best possible impression, go for a pair of black whole cut leather shoes which – thanks to their construction using a single piece of leather – are all elegant unbroken lines.

 

Add a white dress shirt, black accessories (your socks, belt and even your wallet should be black), a simple white pocket square and there you have it, the most formal dress code deciphered.

When it comes to dressing your feet for a wedding, Oxfords and Derbies are the shoe styles most often called upon. They’re both safe choices which means that you’re unlikely to draw unwanted attention to yourself, however that doesn’t mean that they should be worn unimaginatively. Here small details make all the difference.

 

We recommend plumping for a lightly burnished pair of brown toe cap Oxfords which combine formality with little touches of personality. How do you dress these dependable dress shoes up? A navy suit (preferably with just one button and peak lapels for a wedding), tonal blue accessories and a pale blue shirt will all make fine companions.

Penny loafers - most often seen doing the rounds on yachts and American college campuses - are a surprisingly versatile choice for a wedding shoe. But, before you go slipping on a pair and heading to the church, be mindful of a few caveats. Tan penny loafers are a summer wedding shoe, and as far as dress shoes go, they’re one of the most casual styles that you can wear to wedding without getting disapproving downwards glances. If you’re lucky enough to be heading to a hot location for your wedding wear yours sockless. Team with a champagne suit, a pale blue shirt and accessories in shades of taupe for a look that’s formal yet fresh.

Brogues have become something of a catch-all shoe, and now you’re just as likely to see them on the weekend as you are on your commute. We welcome their ubiquity off-duty, but there’s still a place for brogues in your occasionwear wardrobe.

A notch down from the most formal dress shoe styles, they’re perfect for nailing that ‘formal but not too formal’ look at a wedding. Black brogues will make a handsome companion for a grey checked suit at a city wedding. Complement them with a navy polka dot tie, then add a flower pin to your suit blazer’s breast pocket for a subtle finishing flourish.

The Finn double monk strap shoes (coming soon)

Monk strap shoes are undoubtedly in the middle of a revival, coming in practically every colour and fabric imaginable. If you’re going to wear them to a wedding however, you’d do well to stick to a traditional pair in tan or black.

Thanks to their hardwear-heavy design, double monk strap shoes are among the most attention-grabbing dress shoe styles. So, to ensure that you’re not battling with the bride for the title of best-dressed attendee, make sure that you temper their peacocking appeal. For this look to a black suit (choose a gently textured style to lift the look), add a classic white shirt and go for accessories in subdued shades (navy, black, white).