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What's your minimum level of formality for dress shoes?

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    What's your minimum level of formality for dress shoes?



    Since I usually wear jeans or chinos with a polo or button down, I find myself rarely wearing dress shoes. But thinking about it for a bit, why can't I at least wear my less formal shoes (e.g. monks, derbies)? Do any of you guys wear dress shoes without sportcoats or even tucked in shirts? It seems like it could be harder to pull off for shoes the general public might consider dandy-ish (e.g. brogues, wingtips, monkstraps, even though we'd consider them traditionally less formal).


    #2


    That really depends on what you mean by dress shoes. There's really a spectrum with patent oxfords on one end and something like suede bucks on the other. I see it going like this:


    patent oxfords --> black close-laced oxfords --> balmorals --> wingtips --> monks --> suede bucks/bluchers.


    I'd wear anything from balmorals on down with anything from jeans to odd trousers. I regularly wear AE Strands with jeans and a polo. It draws looks, but I frequently receive compliments on them... And those are just Strands. For something like a rough wingtip (think McTavish) I'd wear that in a second with jeans and a t-shirt. Monks are the same way in my mind.

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      #3


      I will probably be wearing wingtips with jeans and a button down shirt tonight.

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        #4


        I can't recall the last time I wore my dress shoes without having on a pair of slacks (and a buttondown tucked in). That being said, I wear the above 5 times a week, so I tend to go more casual once I'm out of the office / don't need to find additional times to wear dress shoes.

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          #5


          I bought the chukkas and monk straps for the purpose of wearing out casually. I did wear strawfuts for a night out, no one even noticed. And looking at my black magnanni's right now, I'd actually like another black captoe pair to wear out on the town etc.


          I think anything tan/walnut/cognac colour right off the bat is a bit more casual and should look great with a pair of darker jeans.

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            #6


            I agree, outside of patent leather & plain closed oxfords,you can get away with almost anything as long as the pairing is good.


            I think the inverse question is harder. How far up do you dress the so-called "casual" shoes like Elgins, McTavish's, other non-buck wingtips, or monks, etc. This is doubly more difficult for the reason you highlighted: the general public will tend to view wings, brogues, etc as MORE formal.

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              #7


              I wear my brown wingtips with everything. The only thing that doesn't work for me is my black balmoral wingtips with jeans.

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                #8


                I think there's a pretty wide variance of acceptibility if it's done correctly. You can dress up more casual shoes in casual situations pretty easily and vice versa.

                "You don't need money to dress better than you do" - Salvatore Romano

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