The elegant man can be recognized by his shoes. On every occasion. Even on the beach, where he goes with unlined moccasins and without socks.
How and when to wear the right model of shoe by opting for classy footwear that will be rigorously handmade we find out by reading the ten commandments drawn up for Esquire by Peron & Peron, or by Bruno and Simone Peron, Bolognese shoemakers. With a premise: true handcrafted footwear must be made of natural materials in all its parts, including the internal toe and heel reinforcements which must be made of leather, like the sole. Rubber is only allowed as an under-sole due to its non-slip functions. But here are the rules to follow to have perfect shoes, no matter what model it is.
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1. how to choose the correct shoe size
Dressing to look nice is synonymous with aristocracy. The impression of the shoe itself is, in fact, inversely proportional to the real prestige of an elegant man. The shoe size must obviously correspond to the rules of comfort and fit, which vary little from model to model. It is the model that decides. The smaller the size, the better.
2. which shoe model should I choose?
While in the case of clothing, the material is the deciding factor and often takes precedence over style, the shoe model is determined by the combination with the outfit you want to wear. Classic shoe types are always a winner. Oxfords, derbies, loafers and similar models are the dividing line between those who have the style and those who are still looking for it.
3. the shoe colour
Shoes should be simplified into two shades: light and dark. Light colours can be worn mainly until daylight. After 1 p.m., elegant men always wear dark-coloured shoes. On hot summer days, shoes in a slightly brighter colour can be worn.
4. what should the sole look like?
The apparent width of the sole should be between 1 and 6 mm for formal and informal shoes, and up to 8 mm for sports shoes; 6 mm to 9 mm is only for winter shoes. Thin soles in summer are not synonymous with coolness, as they provide less insulation to protect the foot from high ground temperatures and suffer from temperature fluctuations.
5. men's shoes suitable for different ages
The right shoe has its limits at any age. Until the style reaches maturity, usually around the age of 30, many colours can be tolerated, with a bit of playfulness and bright patterns cut out. Today, many rules have fallen away: for example, trainers are transgressive for age, but it is good to be reminded every now and then of the right shoe model for all ages.
6. leather or suede shoes?
Calfskin shoes come in many variations, from slight antiquing and shading to sculptures that give movement to the material itself, so you can't go wrong. Suede shoes should only be worn in cold weather and under fine worsted fabrics such as velvet or flannel. Any leather should be nourished regularly. To care for the calf, use a wax polish and regenerating spray.
7. when wearing oxfords
These models are elegant and can be worn with both formal and informal clothes. There are many variations of this style, including full brogues (with two holes in the upper, one large and one small, in a design known as a 'flower'). Full brogues should be worn under casual, sporty and broken-in clothing, mainly in travel fabrics. They should never be worn under formal clothes, even if made of flannel, and half-shoes with small holes and no 'flower' at the toe are preferred. Smooth calfskin oxfords with mirror polish or patent leather are worn under a classic dinner jacket, possibly with ribbon laces. The smooth cap toe is a horizontal cut on the front of the upper, separating the toes of the shoe, and is worn under tight-fitting suits.
8. when wearing derby shoes.
This style is only worn with casual or sports clothing and never formally. Unlike oxfords, richly worked derbies are closer to casual wear and the smoother they are, the more casual they can be. The derby buckle, or monkstrap, can be a compromise between casual and sporty. The Arc Derby is a two-hole strap, ideal for wearing underneath tight clothing With a dovetail cut on the front that continues down the entire side of the shoe, the Longwing Derby is perfect when worn with regular worsted clothing, and can be made from either well-polished and cared-for chunky calf or sculptural calf.
9. When to wear loafers
It is the classic passe-partout moccasin especially in summer, to accessorize a clothing between sporty and formal. The pump model, made of black patent leather, is perfect for a 30-40s retro tuxedo.
10. How to really choose which shoes to buy
Last golden rule: a beautiful shoe is the one you see in the window and that you would like to buy immediately. But a classy shoe is the one you always know where and how to wear without ever making a mistake.