Suede Tassel Loafers
Tassels were traditionally worn by Oxford and Cambridge University undergraduates on their caps. Much later in the
1950s Oscar-winning actor Paul Lukas probed the possibility of a tassel on a shoe to some New York companies. They
turned to a larger shoe company named Alden who produced the tassel loafer which was ironically swiftly popularized
by American college chaps. They often wore them with loungewear in and around their dorms, which resonates with the
lives we’re leading today. Comfortable and easy to slip-on due to their unlined structure, Baudoin & Lange’s
brown suede tassel Sagan loafers shares similar characteristics to a well-made slipper. Alternatively, using the
finest suede leather and time-honoured Goodyear welting method, the brown suede string loafers from the Alexander
Kraft Monte Carlo collection are substantial enough to wear on nearby dog walking excursions on concrete. British
heritage brand George Cleverley also offer a fine pair.
Suede Chukka Boots
Secret agents, mods, royalty, and acting icons have all embraced the chukka boot with great aplomb. The suede,
crepe-soled desert boots remains the dominant style – and are thought to be one of the best-selling shoes of all
time. Pelted by the elements, the suede chukka is one of the more robust members of the suede family – and actually
portrays greater character when a little battered. Slightly lesser-known than some of their Northamptonshire
neighbours, but highly acclaimed for their hi-top chukka boots is Sanders. With bold colours and unexpected
contrasting textures in their designs, they delineate a relaxed aesthetic. Try to avoid overly tapered trousers and
instead opt for a slight hint of a flare – and like Steve McQueen a pair of neutral colour pants which will contrast
beautifully with brown suede. Their Marvin model is equally as casual, and for something a little more refined, but
still equipped for tackling wintry weather with their dainite rubber sole is Edward Green’s mink suede Banbury
Suede Oxfords and Friends
Before the pandemic, if I was told to flee to a city on business and wasn’t privy to where I was going, and could
only pick one style of shoe, it would always be the Oxford with a brogue and then a derby not far behind. Times have
changed of course, but in a suede guise these models of shoe are more adaptable and so retain many of their merits
today. Crafted from supple suede and with a split toe construction, Carmina's derbys are agile in the fact that
they’re robust enough to wear on icy pavements, but also a comfortable shoe to wear in the home. Ludwig Reiter’s
Bostonian mocassins are made from buttery soft suede leather and are a simple yet comfortable shoe. Alternatively,
Scarosso’s Roberto suede Oxfords have endless uses and pairing capabilities.
Occasionally a brown tassel loafer can appear a little mundane, but as ever, Barbanera bypass the ordinary with their
rock ‘n’ roll twists which is evident in their Gattuso loafer, and comes in either black or brown. Certainly not
boring, due to its iconic status, the Lopez Musuem loafer by John Lobb was first introduced in 1950, and features a
neat saddle and a hand stitched apron, remaining a favourite through the generations due to its timeless style and
impeccable quality of construction. At a more accessible price point you won't go far wrong with the Stenhammar dark
brown suede penny loafer from Myrqvist.
Best of The Rest
Neat in nature and extremely versatile, Myrqvist’s Gothem dark brown suede jumper boot could easily act as your
everyday shoe. Drawing inspiration from musician Johnny Cash, Barbanera's suede Cash boots will inject some
much-needed open-mindedness in this closed-off period of life, whilst the chocolate suede Cheltenham Derby boot is
certainly robust enough for walks off the beaten track.
How to care for suede shoes
Difficulty to maintain is the primary reason why some men get put off investing in suede shoes. Yes the texture can
be a little more vulnerable than other materials, but by investing some loose change and taking a little time to
care for them, they'll be right as rain. Here we offer some light guidance on how to protect the suede:
A good brass wire brush will whisk away dust and dirt, whilst restoring the suede's nap. Work in back and forth
motions to avoid any potential damage.
For hard-to-tackle stains such as watermarks, oil and grease, a suede eraser can be an effective spot-cleaning tool.
Simply rub the eraser, making sure to only use a moderate amount of pressure.
If brushing and spot-cleaning your suede shoes hasn’t worked, the next step is to use a suede cleaner. Suede cleaner
works like a shampoo to remove any tough stains. After brushing your shoes down, sponge them with a slightly damp
cloth before spraying your suede cleaner from a distance of at least 20cm. Then, use your suede brush to very gently
rub the product into your shoes and wipe them down again with a cloth. When your shoes are dry, brush them in the
direction of the grain in order to smooth out the nap.
As soon as you invest in a pair of new suede shoes, treat them with a waterproof protective spray before wearing them
outside. This will act as a barrier against rain, puddle splashes and mud, will help prevent the colour from fading
and reduce the chances of staining.