Business Casual Allen Edmonds - Park Ave too much?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by manny14, Jan 23, 2013.

  1. manny14

    manny14 Member

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    Wow, that was a nice read. It sounds like as long as I dressed in the higher end of business casual that black PA's would be fine. If I did end up keeping them, then it would be a good excuse to dress better and build a nicer wardrobe. Thanks for the thoughtful reply... although this makes my decision a little less clear!
     
  2. JLibourel

    JLibourel Senior member

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    Personally, I consider both the PA and the Fifth Avenue to be too formal for anything but a suit. A balmoral with more broguing like the Strand is passable with an odd jacket, but still a little questionable, at least to me. The MacNeil or the Bradley would seem more appropriate for Business Casual, just to give a couple of examples.

    The fact is that "Business Casual" is such a vague term that it can mean anything from a sport coat and tie to a polo shirt and khakis or even jeans. This makes it very hard to prescribe what is appropriate for others.

    The plain fact of the matter is that the vast majority of your co-workers are not going to give a damn about the nuances of styling of your shoes. However, wearing an obvious "suit" shoe like the PA as Business Casual will look anomalous and disharmonious to gentlemen of taste and discrimination...if there even are any in your office.

    However, to the OP, i would say,"Be of good cheer, no matter what dress codes are regnant at your workplace, you will always need your black PAs (or their counterparts) for those occasions in life when you really need to dress well."
     
  3. manny14

    manny14 Member

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    Fantastic proverb! I agree business casual is very vague and even if you came into my office you wouldn't be able to say it falls on either end of the spectrum because people wear all kinds of things. It's a good point about others not giving a rip about what I'm wearing and it's very true. I don't want to get too hung up on what the perfect shoe is, but as I try to improve my own style I want start looking like I at least somewhat know what I'm doing.
     
  4. msulinski

    msulinski Senior member

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    I think I actually disagree with almost everything in this post. Seriously, captoe oxfords with shorts?
     
  5. aravenel

    aravenel Senior member

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    So it wasn't just me who caught that gem? Do we have another Latour on our hands here?
     
  6. lucidream

    lucidream Active Member

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    It's the style in bermuda :p
     
  7. recondite

    recondite Senior member

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    Ha!

    Under what conditions would those "gentlemen of taste and discrimination" actually consider "a polo shirt and khakis or even jeans" to be business casual?

    Seriously.

    I think you are overlooking the fact that what makes the black PA "too formal for anything but a suit" in your eyes, is just the thing that makes the black calf PA the ideal shoe to wear with anything; it's lack of adornment. If you applied this viewpoint universally, it would eliminate a good many elegant designs including most loafers for the same reason despite, no doubt, your belief that loafers are a casual shoe.

    Contrary to conventional wisdom, there is nothing at all more inherently casual about a loafer compared to an oxford shoe. The first record of use for a loafer was the court shoe designed exclusively for insidewear under the most formal conditions possible, making today's loafer a form of the most formal shoes in history; one worn by order of the court of the King.

    In fact, the oxford shoe is inherently more casual than a loafer since it's a devolution and reaction to the requirement of students to wear ankle or higher full laced dress balmorals, which are actually of different side seam construction and slightly more formal than an oxford type shoe with it's characteristic side seam. The oxford was first worn by rebellious youths at Oxford who were intent on making Oxford the Cal-Berkeley of their day and time. The oxford shoe was meant to a worn casually inside and out by young students, but principally outside for rough or casual activities compared to the loafer which when worn as a court shoe was principally worn inside under the most formal conditions of their day by courtiers.

    Of course, we can ignore historical context and simply hold our own personal view as truth.
     
  8. recondite

    recondite Senior member

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    Not to mention the Royal Navy.

    Nothing more idiotic looking than one wearing brown shoes with navy knee high or OTC socks and navy or blue Bermuda style shorts. Trust me on this.
     
  9. nickrut

    nickrut Senior member

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    Yeah sorry, button up.

    I guess the most picky people would view this as an issue but the stylish folks I know would be fine with wearing PA's with a pair of wool slacks and a button up. No suit necessary IMO.

    Now I wouldn't wear with shorts...
     
  10. JLibourel

    JLibourel Senior member

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    In the real world, polos, khakis and jeans are deemed "business casual" in a great many workplaces, sad to say. Gentlemen of taste and discrimination may even find themselves compelled by necessity to work in such environments...and, yes, I do think a guy who matches, say, a pair of desert boots or penny loafers with khakis and a polo shirt is going to look more properly put together and "right" than a man who wears the same apparel with PAs.

    Oh come on now, I don't think you can equate the pumps of yesteryear with the loafers of today. If you take "historical context" as your marker, then the lounge suit is still beachwear, and knee breeches preferable for formal wear to trousers. (Well, I guess they still are technically correct for the Royal Court in England, but if you wear them in any other formal or semi-formal context, you will look like a total jackass.) I won't say a guy wearing PAs with khakis and polo will look like a total jackass, but the combination will look "off" to any discerning eye.

    Fashions and customs do change over a century and a half since oxfords were the shoe of choice of "rebellious youths at Oxford," in case you hadn't noticed. And what were they rebelling against? I am a graduate of Oxford and wasn't aware of any major "rebellion" in the mid 19th century (unless maybe you want to count the Puseyites).
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2013
  11. manny14

    manny14 Member

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    I wish I wasn't so new so my posts didn't have to be moderated before being posted... lots of good info, so thanks to everyone. And sorry that my replies will be outdated by the time they're live!
     
  12. recondite

    recondite Senior member

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    The Puseyites rebels? I thought they were more a counter revolutionaries seeking a return to previously held Christian beliefs and practices based on those beliefs, so therefore a force counter to the real rebellion where Oxford and its students sought to replace the biblical Christianity upon which the university had been founded with the principles of naturalism. The Puseyites were unable to turn the tide of revolution in favor of naturalism, no?

    Ultimately Oxford and it's students ignored the truth of the superficial conflict but deep concord between science and theistic religion and the superficial concord and deep conflict between science and naturalism . They remodeled science into a religion supporting their world view based upon the principles of naturalism despite the fact, that science continually observes and describes a world unrestrained by the principles of naturalism, a world only possible with the existence of a benevolent creator, something naturalism denies.

    Something cannot come from no-thing and the cause is always equal to or greater than the effect; these are laws of science the naturalists deny. They also deny the various combined laws of thermodynamics when they hypothesize that real information can form de novo from random substrates spontaneously by chance. This is a false idea, since any system, open or closed, where there is a decrease in entropy with a simultaneous increase in enthalpy such as is required when DNA is synthesized from random base pairs into a sequence coded with real information and not random effects with fidelity to a pre-existing non-random standard, cannot do so spontaneously or by chance. This is a natural law of the universe.

    E.g., the monkey creating Hamlet at a typewriter is a logical fallacy, since the only condition under which this could happen, is if there is a pre-existing copy of Hamlet to which we can compare the random effects of the monkey to see if it's random effects can present an illusion of real information.

    Naturalism is a failed hypothesis, so better Oxford had held to the philosophy and principles of the Puseyites and so remained in deep concordance with both theistic religion and real science based on natural law and empirical truth, and not wedded to a naturalistic religion unencumbered by natural law or empirical truth that claims to be real science.
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2013
  13. msulinski

    msulinski Senior member

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    I don't think black PAs with worsted wool trousers is the worst look in the world, but I think the OP has better options available to him. Since he still has the option of returning them, I think he should.

    I don't think they look good with brown
     
  14. nickrut

    nickrut Senior member

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    I agree, was just saying the PAs aren't a horrible bet. I'd go with something more versatile like a pair of wingtips (Mccalisters?) or strands. Probably would go with walnut or burnished brown.
     
  15. JLibourel

    JLibourel Senior member

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    You seem like you'd be a most interesting chap to palaver with in real life. Anent the Puseyites, I think you sell them short. While Dr. Pusey remained absolutely conservative to his death, the next generation of "Puseyites," is probably best exemplified by Bishop Charles Gore, who early in his career was the first principal of Pusey House and who played a very active role in reconciling traditional Catholic Christianity with modern scholarship and scientific theory, with collections like the Lux Mundi and Essays Catholic and Critical.

    It will have been 50 years this Michaelmas term since I went up to Oxford, so I have no idea what the status of religion at Oxford is at this time, but in my day it would certainly have been fallacious to have declared that Oxford had, collectively, forsaken traditional theistic religion in favor of what you call "naturalism." A goodly percentage of the dons, including some in the "hard" sciences, were active churchmen. When I was able to attend daily Mass at St. Mary Magdalen's, one of the most regular communicants was a physicist (not sure whether he was a professor or simply a don), and he was only one of many dons who were believers.

    Jumping from the topic of PA's with Business Casual to this seems to be one of the most dramatic threadjacks in the history of SF!
     

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