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Penny loafers for my courtroom attire?

festeggeremo-domani

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Hello everyone. My courtroom attire consists of a black jacket, white shirt, black tie, striped grey trousers, and black shoes. I have a pair of black oxford captoes and a pair of plain black derby shoes. I'm thinking about adding a third pair so that my shoes can get at least 48 hours of rest between each wear. I always thought plain black penny loafers would we fine with my attire (I've seen some lawyers wear them too, they look pretty good), but as I'm browsing through the internet it seems that almost everyone says they're for casual or business-casual wear only. I'm getting a pretty sweet deal on new handmade penny loafers but I don't know if they're appropriate for wearing to court. It goes without saying that I'll be wearing them with long socks if I do get them. What is your opinion?
 

Phileas Fogg

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You lost me at black jacket, black tie and gray striped pants. I suppose you could wear penny loafers but it’s an odd look overall. I think tassel loafers might be a better option.

I get it that the courtroom is not where you want to “express yourself” through clothing, but I think a navy or gray suit would be a better choice. Then, perhaps, a loafer would be less distracting.
 

Phileas Fogg

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Pakistan. We've done away with wigs and bands (and gowns in my province at least) from the British Raj, but the black-grey-white palette is strongly enforced for advocates.
i suppose that makes sense.

You could do a penny loafer if it had a bit of a sleeker silhouette. Something like this:

 

festeggeremo-domani

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i suppose that makes sense.

You could do a penny loafer if it had a bit of a sleeker silhouette. Something like this:

They're really close to this, just with the vamp having slightly pebbled leather (still really sober). It'll cost 45 US dollars (for a nice handmade shoe made by some of the last artisans remaining in Pakistan!). I couldn't have a better deal on new loafers. Thanks!
 

Phileas Fogg

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They're really close to this, just with the vamp having slightly pebbled leather (still really sober). It'll cost 45 US dollars (for a nice handmade shoe made by some of the last artisans remaining in Pakistan!). I couldn't have a better deal on new loafers. Thanks!
$45 for a pair of hand made shoes??? Man, I need to travel more.

Good luck barrister.
 

Fedoraguy

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I say no loafers in court. Stick with balmorals. I’m a trial attorney as well.
 

dieworkwear

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I'm not familiar with the dress norms in Pakistan but think loafers are too casual for the courtroom, especially if you're wearing a black jacket with striped grey pants, which is a combination that derives from British morning dress.

That said, as someone based in the United States, I think dress norms are pretty fluid nowadays, even in semi-formal or formal environments. I've seen lawyers in court wearing loafers with dark grey or navy suits. I think the shoe style is too casual, but it's not an uncommon thing to see.
 

Fedoraguy

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They're really close to this, just with the vamp having slightly pebbled leather (still really sober). It'll cost 45 US dollars (for a nice handmade shoe made by some of the last artisans remaining in Pakistan!). I couldn't have a better deal on new loafers. Thanks!
must post pics when they’re finished!
 

Daniel Hakimi

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In the US, you can get away with loafers and worse in a courtroom -- not that you necessarily want to try it, it might help to know your judge. Styleforum tends to underestimate how far you can dress loafers up -- a good sleek pair can look great with a suit, and almost nobody knows the difference between different kinds of dress shoes anyway...

But from the sound of things, they're a lot pickier about what you wear in court in Pakistan. Black jacket and black tie would genuinely be weird here, so if it's mandatory there, you might want to stick with the black oxfords for as long as possible.

That's not to say that loafers would be a bad thing to own... If you see other attorneys wear them, you can probably get away with them some of the time... but think of them as a casual shoe you can sometimes play with at work, rather than a dress shoe you just happen to actually like.
 

rjc149

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I would say that black penny loafers occupy that same space as brown cap toe oxfords do. It's a clash of formality levels. It doesn't mean they can't look good, but if you're trying to be safely conservative, opt for black lace-ups.

As far as black lace-ups go, the styling doesn't matter anymore -- oxford, derby, broguing, cap toe, split toe -- as long as they are nicely polished, they are appropriate with a suit for western conservative settings.

You will be able to speak better to Pakistani dress codes than I can.
 

corpseposeur

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Considering the formality of your dress code. I wouldn't deviate from black cap-toe oxfords or balmorals for the courtroom. If you have trouble finding a good fitting pair of oxfords, I think black derbys could be OK as well.

In the US, wearing loafers may be done--but I don't like it. I am generally not so particular about what other people wear but if I was a client, I would be annoyed if the lawyer representing me was wearing casual slip-on shoes in court. If you are in a courtroom, then the situation is usually of great importance. I would argue, the stakes are higher than in a business meeting.

I am aware that Pakistan like many Asian countries have a more shoes-off culture for religious practice and home so perhaps this is part of your consideration. Even with that in mind, I would stick with the above recommendation.
 

jbc247

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In Houston, I wear black penny loafers to court almost daily when I’m not in trial. I also wear fun socks and ties. For trial I usually wear black cowboy boots.
 

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