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Most versatile shade of brown for shoes?

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
I'll likely be buying my first pair of dress shoes soon (probably Allen-Edmonds), and I'm wondering, since I'll only have one pair, what color should I get? Is there a shade of brown that goes equally well with navy and gray?
post #2 of 15
darker is more versatile
post #3 of 15
Do you wear these shoes with suits a lot? Then I'd say the dark brown burnished. If not, I'd go with the chili.
post #4 of 15
Darker is definitely more versatile with suits. If you're buying these to use as "dress" shoes, then dark is the way to go. But if you want something that you can also wear with jeans or khakis, then a medium brown tends to work better. Won't look as formal with your suits, but that's the tradeoff.
post #5 of 15
If you really want versatility in dress shoes - go with cordovan (the color, not the leather). Allen Edmond's "merlot" color is the same thing. It works with pretty much any color suit (grey, navy, tans, even black)), and dresses down well with jeans or khakis if the cut of the shoe is right...
post #6 of 15
Thread Starter 
Is the chili at least wearble wtih gray and blue suits? They would be worn mostly with jeans and I really like the color. What about the plain brown? The cordovan seems really versatile, but I don't know if I like the merlot color; I'd have to see it in person. Thanks for the suggestions so far.
post #7 of 15
There is a real incongruity between the tone of a really light shoe and the dark tone of say a navy suit. Doc's suggestion of a medium brown compromise is well taken.
post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 
post #9 of 15
[quote]--------------------------------------------------------------------------------     This is an oxford captoe, the most formal business shoe. It will not work with jeans.  If you want something that might make it with both suit and jeans you might consider a blutcher  half brougue which has country origins and yet will work most places with a suit particularly as most people think brougues are dressy.  Only here will you hear that if brougues are worn with a suit then the suit should be tweed.
post #10 of 15
I love that shoe. But I definitely wouldn't wear it with jeans, or even with khakis. The closed lacing alone disqualifies it for casual wear.
post #11 of 15
Given that you want to a) that can primarily be worn with jeans, and b) can be worn with suits, my choices from AE's dress line that have leather soles and are lace-ups/monkstraps, in order of preference, would be: 1) Bradley in shell cordovan ($415.00) 2-tie) Seneca in dark brown ($295.00) or Hancock in brown antibes 4) Hillcrest/Concord in brown or merlot 6) Seneca/Hancock/Hillcrest/Concord in black or chili (not all combinations available) Stay away from chestnut if you're wearing a laceup with jeans. Now, if you don't care about "it must be a leather sole thing with suit" or "it must lace up with a suit" thing, your options increase. With a rubber sole, the Ashland, Stockbridge or Kennett in brown would be an option. Even the Bergland could work. With loafers, you can either get a burgundy or brown loafer, either in a tassel or penny loafer format (Randolph, Glasgow, Grayson, etc). Personally, I'll stick with the brown laceup.
post #12 of 15
Agree with DocHolliday about the brown cap-toe. I don't think it will look good with jeans or khakis....
post #13 of 15
Thread Starter 
I was actually just using that picture for an example of the color, though I do like the shoe. I did not know that a brogue was less formal than a plain captoe. Does AE only make that one model of monkstrap, the Concord? I want some monkstraps, but I don't like the bicycle front. And yes, it has to have a leather sole.
post #14 of 15
Yeah, I think the bicycle front monkstrap is the only monkstrap in AE's line. They use to have another one, a plain-toe, but for some reason they phased it out. Bad move, imho. I think every top line maker should have it in their standard catalog. You can always check Brooks Brothers or Alden out if you think a plaintoe monkstrap appeals to you. I don't have any, but I think a dark brown or black monkstrap would be very flexible given that you want to be able to wear them with both a suit and casual wear.
post #15 of 15
AE had a plain toe monk just discontinued the Garner . I bought a pair last month from an AE outlet over the phone a a great discount. Call around, its an attractive shoe and it won't set off airport alarms.
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