Loafers are an incredibly versatile shoe. They were originally created in the 1920s by King George VI’s shoemaker when he was asked by his royal patron to design an indoor shoe that could be worn during visits to country houses.
Thus, the loafer was born: a comfortable leather shoe with a low back and no laces that could easily be slipped on and off.
It was not long at all until the loafer stepped out of doors, and it has been a very popular gentlemen’s footwear choice ever since. Loafers are generally worn as smart/casual shoes, though they are frequently paired with suits in many business environments.
The low backed nature of loafers mean that they are not always appropriate for year round wear. Higher backed shoes and boots are more practical during the coldest months of the year, and so loafers tend to be stored away during these periods.
However, now that we’re approaching the beginning of spring, we have to ask… is it loafer season yet?
The answer here really depends where you fall on the loafers and socks debate. Some footwear aficionados believe that loafers should always be worn sock-less.
If you fall into this camp, we’re sorry to say that you’re probably going to need to keep your loafers in storage for the time being. It’s certainly not warm enough to be hitting the streets with bare ankles quite yet.
However, we think that loafers can work very well with socks. For best results, choose plain black or navy socks with a delicate knit. These will keep your feet warm and dry and will allow you to enjoy your loafers for more of the year.