Loafer expert Allan Baudoin, co-founder of British brand Baudoin & Lange, shares his tips on getting the ideal pair
Over the years, I have learned that quality and comfort are the two key factors to consider when purchasing a pair of loafers. Are the loafers lined? Are they well heeled? Is the material supple and soft? Will they require breaking in time? How do they feel?
There are multiple different elements to keep in mind, along with your own sense of style, preferences and of course, your wardrobe.
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In terms of materials, we would recommend buying loafers made of full grain leather. Full grain is the highest quality grade of leather and best allows the shoe to retain its shape, while ensuring a supple and comfortable pair of shoes.
Any loafers made of corrected grain leathers should, in our opinion, be ruled out as they will feel quite the opposite – stiff and uncomfortable. A good leather should have a deep, natural colour that will get better with time.
Be wary of colours that seem too uniform or a grain that seems too polished – this is usually a sign of corrected colouring and often means the grain is essentially a coat that sits on top of the leather and does not allow it to breathe.
With regards to fit, we would always suggest choosing a pair that fit snugly. Loafers are made out of one piece of leather, as opposed to multiple pieces of leather stitched together (as seen with Oxfords, for example), which make them more prone to stretching, so best to opt for a well-fitted pair.
Style is also a very important factor to consider when selecting a pair of loafers. The general assumption is that smaller feet equal elegant feet. To emulate this elegance, opt for a pair of almond-toe or square-toe shaped loafers.
Classic designs, with little decoration around the toe, are also a great option to complete a simple, elegant look, reminiscent of style-savvy men and women in the 1950s. A good place to start is to analyse sartorial style icons such as Fred Astaire or the Duke of Windsor (Edward the VIII) or look into brands like Aubercy, Edward Green, John Lobb and of course, Baudoin & Lange. We specialise in supremely comfortable and elegant Belgian loafers which we believe will become the most common form of loafers because of their simplicity and elegance.
For more, visit Baudoin & Lange
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