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Official Wedding Attire Question/Answer/Picture Thread - Page 88

post #1306 of 1636

Thanks for the suggestion, I do like the Guildford. That's almost exactly what I pictured as far as a modern substitute for the pump.

post #1307 of 1636
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shambles View Post

Can I get opinions on footwear for my wedding? I'm having my tailor order a MTM traditional tux for me, which I'll have the opportunity to wear about 3 or 4 times a year after the wedding. He suggested opera pumps since everything else about the tux I chose is pretty classic, but I'm not completely sold on the pumps. If there's anywhere I might look to stray from the norm, it would be the shoes.

So I'm looking for options. Whole cuts, cap toes, maybe a more 'modern' pump, etc. Concerning the pumps, the bow is what gets to me, despite knowing the tradition and timeless look of it.

Any help is appreciated, as always. And, as an aside, the tux I'm looking at getting will be by H. Freeman (not Hickey). If you have words of wisdom for or against this route, that's also welcomed.

Opera pumps or plain toe oxfords. Loafers are generally way too informal for a tuxedo, stitch or punch cap oxfords are suboptimal (there will be worse shoes at most black tie events and these can do in a pinch if you do not want to buy shoes for your black tie rig, but if you are going to buy shoes, do it right).
post #1308 of 1636
Quote:
Originally Posted by archibaldleach View Post


Opera pumps or plain toe oxfords. Loafers are generally way too informal for a tuxedo, stitch or punch cap oxfords are suboptimal (there will be worse shoes at most black tie events and these can do in a pinch if you do not want to buy shoes for your black tie rig, but if you are going to buy shoes, do it right).

 

Formal loafers are a variant of the opera pump, basically with a longer upper, with a silk bow. It allows the to be made rtw and still fit pretty well, whereas opera pumps have to be a nearly perfect fit.

post #1309 of 1636
Quote:
Originally Posted by ImTheGroom View Post

Formal loafers are a variant of the opera pump, basically with a longer upper, with a silk bow. It allows the to be made rtw and still fit pretty well, whereas opera pumps have to be a nearly perfect fit.

They still seem like a confused item to me and a needless contemporary option. Plain toe oxfords are formal by their very nature. Pumps are formal for the same reason. The "formal loafer" idea strikes me as a weird attempt to dress up a shoe that belongs on the casual end of the spectrum. If one does not fit into pumps, plain toe oxfords are always an option.
post #1310 of 1636
I'm beginning to feel like the black wholecut oxford is THE formal shoe for today's well dressed gentlemen. It works with tuxedo dress, or really any other formal occasion like weddings, galas, etc. The only setting I can see it not working in is the office boardroom.

Somebody correct me if I'm wrong?
post #1311 of 1636
Quote:
Originally Posted by archibaldleach View Post


They still seem like a confused item to me and a needless contemporary option. Plain toe oxfords are formal by their very nature. Pumps are formal for the same reason. The "formal loafer" idea strikes me as a weird attempt to dress up a shoe that belongs on the casual end of the spectrum. If one does not fit into pumps, plain toe oxfords are always an option.

 

I find that the plainness of them works quite well. The ones I have seen do not have the air of informality that a regular loafer has.  The smooth upper, running straight into the trouser leg, I find preferable to laces, personally.  Though, the interruption of laces can be ameliorated by lacing your shoes with silk ribbon.

 

That's not to say I think Oxfords are inappropriate; I think they are a perfectly good option.  Whole cuts not tradtional either, but for the same reasons of the minimalist design, that I favour the formal loafer, they work quite well.

 

I would say that, if you are going to wear formal loafers, as with pumps, silk dress hose are mandatory.  The whole aesthetic I just described could easily be ruined by anything thicker, or with a fuzzy texture.  While I think there are some calf formal loafers on the market, I think they do risk being in the "not sure if on purpose" category. Patent leather ones, at a bare minimum, indicate that one clearly made a conscious choice of these shoes for formal attire.

 

I readily concede that the formal loafer is a newer item, and may, or may not, be here to stay. I think it's quite good that we have made arguments both for, and against, the shoe, so that @Shambles can consider them, and form his own opinion.

post #1312 of 1636
Quote:
Originally Posted by MGD83 View Post

I'm beginning to feel like the black wholecut oxford is THE formal shoe for today's well dressed gentlemen. It works with tuxedo dress, or really any other formal occasion like weddings, galas, etc. The only setting I can see it not working in is the office boardroom.

Somebody correct me if I'm wrong?

 

If one was to have only one pair of dress shoes, I would say that it should be a black cap toe Oxford/Balmoral, or second place going to plain toe balmorals.  Cap toes are imperfect, but valid, with evening formal wear, perfect with a suit, adequate with a blazer, and passable with a sport coat.  Plain toes would be perfect for evening formal wear, fine with a suit, or blazer, and a bit out of place, but not ridiculously so, with a sport coat.

 

I don't know how the whole cut would be received in the realm of CBD; I'm going on your criticism of it that it would not be ideal, to exclude it.  I think it's an excellent option as a formal shoe, whether calf, or patent.

post #1313 of 1636
Quote:
Originally Posted by MGD83 View Post

I'm beginning to feel like the black wholecut oxford is THE formal shoe for today's well dressed gentlemen. It works with tuxedo dress, or really any other formal occasion like weddings, galas, etc. The only setting I can see it not working in is the office boardroom.

Somebody correct me if I'm wrong?

Not sure if you are referring to an actual wholecut or just a plain toe oxford. The wholecut is not as well suited to the events you mention because it is more casual. A black plain toe oxford on the other hand can be a very elegant shoe. I think that a stitch cap oxford is a better choice, as it is the optimal shoe when one is wearing a suit, which probably happens more often than one wearing black tie. I'd rather wear stitch cap oxfords to a black tie event than plain toe oxfords for business.
post #1314 of 1636
Archibald, I was always under the press ion that the less detail a shoe has, the more formal it is considered. Does a wholecut not fall under this category?
post #1315 of 1636
Quote:
Originally Posted by MGD83 View Post

Archibald, I was always under the press ion that the less detail a shoe has, the more formal it is considered. Does a wholecut not fall under this category?

Generally, this is a fair way to look at different types of shoes within the same category. For example, a plain toe oxford is more formal than a stitch cap oxford which in turn is more formal than wingtips (leaving out a number of other styles of oxfords in between). It does not work quite so well when looking at shoes across different categories. For example, a plain toe derby is probably still less formal than a half brogue oxford since a derby is more casual than an oxford. The most formal shoe one can wear in the evening (for black and white tie) is an opera pump, which is definitely not lacking in extra details. The issue with wholecuts is that they are not classic formal shoes, so while they may check the right boxes with respect to not having a lot of detail / decoration, they are a bit less conservative and more fashion forward than the classic oxford.
post #1316 of 1636
I would agree that they are fashion forward, and less classic. I do, however, think that they suit a Tuxedo, because of the reasons @MGD83 states. They may pass out of fashion again, as the cummervest did, or they may stick around, as the cummerbund did. In the mean time, if you want to be strictly traditional, @archibaldleach's advice hits the mark. If you want to push the envelope a little, whole cuts, or formal loafers are am option for you.

I would contest that the opera pump isn't plain. Aside from the silk bow, it has no ornamentation at all.
post #1317 of 1636
^ The silk bow is a pretty big deal, though, and not that subtle. Way more noticeable that you are wearing shoes with bows on them than a stitch cap vs. plain toe oxford or even plain toe oxford vs. wholecut.
post #1318 of 1636
I suppose it is quite noticeable, but then, so are laces. Less so, I suppose, since they fall under the trouser hem. Fair point, on the pump being more eye catching than an Oxford.

Formality is defined by convention, with some internal guidelines. With Black Tie, I find these variants of footwear within the spirit of the many subtle details one can vary within a dinner suit, as opposed to the strict rigidity of White Tie.
post #1319 of 1636

I think after reading the discussions from you all, I may either stick with full tradition and wear the opera pumps or go with a plain toe oxford. Either option will only be worn with the tux, and only a few times a year, so I am still hoping to stay in a manageable price range, but I understand the concern that the more fashion forward loafers may fall out of use in the future.

 

I appreciate the debate and help on the shoe issue. The same appreciation goes toward anyone willing to lend their opinion to H. Freeman MTM tuxedos, if they have experience with them. I have yet to begin the process other than picking out the look, so there are a couple routes I can take here as well.

post #1320 of 1636
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