Dress shoes are an essential to any man, regardless of his usual style. Because some way or another, there will be an occasion that calls for it; a wedding, a ceremony, or anything with a formal setting. Now, dress shoes aren’t necessarily just for necktie events. They can also be worn to match smart casual outfits, which are a go-to style for many today, be it for a date, for a social event, or even for work.
Common colours of men’s dress shoes are black and brown, but there has been an increase in colour variety, patterns, prints, and colour tones, that there are so many to choose from today. Here, we will be focusing on browns and some tips on how to wear them.
Introduction to Dress Shoes
Before we move into brown dress shoes territory, let’s have a little introduction to what dress shoes are.
The essence of dress shoes and how well you wear them lie in how well you know them, from the types to the materials, as they can go from traditionally formal to semi-formal to smart casual. The main types of dress shoes are oxfords, monk strap shoes, derby shoes, loafers, dress boots, and driving moccasins.
Their differences lie in the details like stitching, lacing, straps, and perforations. As for the material, they typically are made with either leather or suede. All these varieties in design and construction gives you a wider range of shoes to pick from.
Dressing for the Occasion
Now that you know your dress shoes basics, it’s time to learn how to match them according to the occasion. You may think brown is a boring colour, but it really isn’t. There are different shades from light to dark (even tones) and your choice of shade may depend on the formality of the event you’re going to.
A darker shade like mahogany, dark brown, and medium brown pushes towards a more formal setting, whereas a lighter shade like tan, neutral, walnut, and bronze speaks more casual. This is why black has always been a popular choice as dress shoes are often thought of as only formal shoes.
However, the flexibility in brown shoes is what makes them so charming. You could go all fancy in a suit, or pull off a less formal look with dri fit shirts and slacks. Knowing when to go all out or dial back a little is part of the learning curve to mastering dress shoes.
Choosing Your Outfit Colour
With how versatile brown dress shoes can be, one could wear a series of colours to match them. Although the usual blue, grey, and white go well with brown shoes, dressing up with them is not so restrictive and you can play outside the box a little.
Generally, earthy tones are what you’re looking for here, which are warmer and natural colours. Some examples would be auburn, sepia, copper, khaki, olive, maroon, taupe, charcoal, burgundy, and forest green. You don’t have to stick with traditional colours.
Pairing Accessories And Details
Alright, you’ve got your full outfit, but you’re not ready to go till you’ve added the little details. You do not need to go all out by adding everything you can get your hands on. Simplicity is best and sometimes, just a small detail or a single statement piece goes a long way.
Brown details and accessories would be a nice choice. Like a brown leather belt, a brown leather bag, or a pair of dress socks with patterns and little brown detailing.
Of course, you would not want to be of one colour from top to toe – a fashion crime – but certain matchy items to your whole ensemble could make a statement. For example, your necktie and shirt could be in the same shade as your trousers and blazer or jacket. Or a wristwatch with brown strap could match your brown belt and brown dress shoes. You don’t need to be too extravagant to look classy.
The “No Black” Rule
These two colours, although the most ordinary and standard, are said to not go together. That it is a big no-no, and the fashion police will come after you if they see it. Perhaps you might have heard that you should say no to black suits, black ties, black coats, black belts, and black socks if your footwear is brown. But who’s to judge? Fashion is limitless and has no right answer.
Indeed, black outfits look amazing with black shoes, but they can too with brown. The key here is to select the right shade of brown. Depending on how formal you go, the right shade will boost your overall look. For formal wear, dress shoes that are of darker shades of brown can go with a black suit. But with a more casual outfit, say with black jeans, a darker or lighter shade of brown works.
Now, there is no one size fits all when it comes to fashion. Sure, there are some traditional rules, but who’s to say that you can’t bend it somewhat to create your own style? For instance, wearing a top with t shirt printing and matching it with a blazer, or a formal pair of trousers and casual dress shoes.
Even a custom t shirt printing Singapore can look good if you pair it well and it suits you. After all, fashion is always evolving and trends come and go. Taking things a notch higher is what gives individuality to fashion.
That being said, push and pull with fashion is the way to go. If you’re not too familiar with fashion or are just getting started, having some basic items as your starting point would be a stable foundation to grow from and you can never go wrong with them. And dress shoes are one of the basics. If you don’t own a pair, this might be a good time to look for one. And if you aren’t sure which colour to go for, brown will be a great choice. You won’t regret it.