Suits and Boots: All you need to know
If you think that boots are only for weekend hiking trips or days out on the farm, then we'd very much like to introduce you to a new concept, a new world of formal footwear - the dress boot. Yes, it does exist and we rather like it. It's a great addition to your style arsenal that is both understated and flamboyant, and we're starting to encourage everyone to purchase a pair.
What is a dress boot?
Besides the obvious higher cut of a dress boot, there is only one other difference between it and a dress shoe, the sole. Usually, a dress boot will have a thicker sole, great for keeping your feet planted firmly on the pavement on a rainy day or for a spot of impromptu hill walking on your lunch break.
The benefits of boot over shoe
There’s nothing worse than arriving at the office after getting caught in a sudden downpour only to realize that your oversized golfing umbrella failed to keep the rain off the hems of your pants or that the puddle you so expertly avoided has done more damage than you first thought. Can you think of a more uncomfortable way to spend a rainy Monday morning than trying to work with wet ankles? The dress boot is by far the superior choice for bad weather as it not only keeps you dry but can also keep those ankles warm.
What styles are out there?
Once you start looking, you’ll wonder how you hadn’t noticed all those dress boot styles before and, just like shoes there are styles to suit every occasion. Here are a few of our favourites.
These are the boots that you’ll see and immediately recognize. They’re like leather loafer boots in that they are easy to slip on due to the elasticated ankle, and their uncomplicated styling means they’re an excellent companion for practically any suit style. If you’re going with this style, then we recommend a sharp toed pair that will go perfectly with a slim fit custom tailored suit.
Otherwise known as desert boots, they’re usually the ideal footwear for a casual look. Remember to choose a leather pair with thinner soles for a formal boot, that adds a spark of individuality. You might consider avoiding some of the chunky stylings, or extra stitching you often see in chukkas as this dresses down what can be a dressed up boot.
Cap-Toe Lace Up Boot
You just can’t go wrong with the classic cap toe shoe, so it makes sense to opt for a cap toe dress boot. It’s an understated style that suits any occasion whether it’s a black tie event or the office Christmas party. You should keep the tones neutral and simple.
Like the cap toe, the brogue is a style that will never die and the wingtip brogue dress boot is the boot that matures with age. Remember that the antiqued style is very much in with regards to shoes, so buying a pair of brogues is a sound investment in a piece of footwear that can be worn with a suit or jeans.
What suits can I wear with them?
The truth is that if you’re comfortable wearing them and feel that they add to your look, then you can wear dress boots with anything, from a tuxedo to your tailored business suit. The only advice we’d offer here is that you pay close attention to the fit of your suit pants. If they are slim fitting, then make sure you go for the sleekest pair of dress boot you can find, as you don’t want your pants bunching up around the tops of a bulky pair. Keep in mind that a simple and understated design is the best option for each style of boot mentioned above.