Brogue shoes are a type of footwear that originated in Scotland and Ireland in the 18th century. They are characterised by their decorative perforations or “broguing” along the edges and on the toe cap of the shoe. These perforations were originally designed to allow water to drain out of the shoes when walking through wet terrain, but they have since become a decorative element.
Brogue shoes come in many different styles, including Oxford, Derby, and Monk strap. They can be made from a variety of materials, including leather and suede, and are often available in a range of colours. They are versatile and can be worn with a variety of outfits, from casual to formal.
Brogue shoes have become a popular choice for men and are often seen as a classic and timeless footwear option. They are especially popular in the fall and winter months, as their sturdy construction and durable materials make them well-suited for colder weather.
Different types of brogue shoes
There are several types of brogue shoes, each with their own unique features and styling options. Here are some of the most common types and how to style them:
Oxford brogues are a classic type of brogue shoe with closed lacing. They have a neat, streamlined design that makes them perfect for formal occasions such as weddings or business meetings. You can style them with a suit or dress pants for a sharp, sophisticated look.
Derby brogues have open lacing and a more relaxed design than Oxford brogues. They are versatile and can be dressed up or down. You can wear them with jeans and a casual shirt for a smart-casual look or pair them with chinos and a blazer for a more formal outfit.
Wingtip brogues are characterised by their distinctive “W”-shaped toe cap. They are a great choice for dressy occasions and look excellent when paired with a suit. You can also wear them with dress pants and a button-down shirt for a polished, sophisticated look.
Longwing brogues have a distinctive wing-shaped toe cap that extends to the back of the shoe. They are perfect for adding a touch of flair to a classic outfit. You can wear them with chinos and a blazer for a smart-casual look or pair them with dress pants and a tie for a formal outfit.
Monk-strap brogues have a single or double buckle closure instead of laces. They are a stylish alternative to traditional lace-up shoes and look great with both casual and formal outfits. You can wear them with jeans and a shirt for a casual look or pair them with a suit for a formal occasion.
When styling brogue shoes, it’s important to choose the right colour and material to complement your outfit. Neutral colours such as black, brown, and tan are versatile and easy to pair with different outfits. Leather brogue shoes are classic and timeless, while suede brogue shoes are more casual and have a softer look. It’s also important to consider the occasion and dress code when choosing your brogue shoes.
Factors to consider before buying a pair
If you’re considering buying a pair of brogue shoes, here are some factors to consider before making your purchase:
Purpose: Consider the purpose of the shoes. Are you buying them for formal occasions, casual wear, or work? The type of brogue shoes you choose will depend on your intended purpose.
Comfort: Brogue shoes can be comfortable, but it’s important to try them on and ensure they fit well. Look for shoes with a cushioned footbed and a good arch support to ensure your feet are comfortable, especially if you plan to wear them for long periods of time.
Quality: The quality of brogue shoes can vary widely. Look for shoes made with high-quality materials such as leather or suede, and check the stitching and construction to ensure they are well-made and durable.
Style: Brogue shoes come in a variety of styles and colours. Consider your personal style and the types of outfits you plan to wear them with. Choose a colour and style that complements your wardrobe and fits your personal style.
Brand: Look for reputable brands that are known for their quality and craftsmanship. Research online reviews to see what other customers have said about the brand and the shoes.
Price: Brogue shoes can range in price from budget-friendly to high-end luxury brands. Consider your budget and choose a pair of shoes that offer good value for money and will last for a long time.
By considering these factors, you can find a pair of brogue shoes that are comfortable, stylish, and durable and that fit your personal style and budget.
How to clean and store
Proper cleaning and storage can help extend the life of your brogue shoes. Here are some tips on how to clean and store your brogue shoes:
Remove any loose dirt and debris from the shoes using a soft-bristled brush.
Use a damp cloth to wipe down the shoes, paying particular attention to any scuffs or stains.
Apply a leather cleaner or conditioner to the shoes, following the manufacturer’s instructions.
Allow the shoes to dry naturally, away from direct sunlight or heat.
Once the shoes are dry, buff them with a soft cloth to restore their shine.
Store your brogue shoes in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight or heat sources.
Stuff the shoes with tissue paper or shoe trees to help them maintain their shape.
Avoid stacking shoes on top of each other, as this can cause damage to the leather.
Consider storing your shoes in a shoe bag or box to protect them from dust and dirt.
If you plan to store your shoes for an extended period, consider applying a leather conditioner to them first to help prevent the leather from drying out.
By following these tips, you can help keep your brogue shoes looking their best for years to come.
Additional tips to maintain your brogue shoes
In addition to cleaning and proper storage, there are other tips you can follow to maintain your brogue shoes:
Rotate your shoes: Wearing the same pair of shoes every day can cause them to wear out more quickly. Try to rotate your brogue shoes with other pairs to give them a break and extend their lifespan.
Use shoe trees: Shoe trees help to maintain the shape of your shoes and absorb any excess moisture, which can help to prevent cracks and other damage to the leather.
Protect your shoes from water: Water can damage leather shoes, so it’s important to protect them from rain and other sources of moisture. Consider using a water-repellent spray to help protect your shoes from water damage.
Avoid wearing your shoes in harsh conditions: Brogue shoes are not designed for harsh conditions such as snow or ice. Try to avoid wearing them in these conditions, or consider investing in a pair of waterproof boots for these situations.
Have your shoes professionally cleaned and polished: While you can clean and polish your brogue shoes at home, having them professionally cleaned and polished can help restore them to their original condition and extend their lifespan.
By following these additional tips, you can help maintain your brogue shoes and keep them looking their best for years to come.