Lately, I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about monkstrap shoes, mainly because they appear to be the men’s shoes of the moment, and because they occupy a unique place on the fashion spectrum. Monkstraps are what I would call shoes of intermediate formality; more formal than loafers, but less formal than wingtips or cap-toe oxfords. And because of this, you can wear them with almost anything from all but the most formal suit, to trousers and sports coats, or even jeans if you’re bold enough.
In my mind, however, the monkstrap’s strongest associations are academic. I think of it as something worn by smartly-dressed English professors in brown tweed suits, the sort of shoe that is exactly fussy enough, and exactly stylish enough to make you want to read poetry out loud to a classroom of lovely young coeds.
The Moreschi Bristol Calfskin Monkstrap in black or brown, is a simple, luxurious, traditional Italian monkstrap. I love that brown color.
Double monkstrap shoes are especially hard to pull off without seeming overly dandyish. However, the suede finish of this double monk strap from Santoni negates some of that.
Finally, if suede is your thing, I very much like these simple single monkstrap shoes, the Cremona from Stemar, as being something that you could wear everyday, with a huge variety of outfits.