Brown Shoes and Guinness

Top ‘o the morning to ya and Happy St. Patrick’s Day.

Irish or not, chances are you’ve worked a little bit of green into your clothing today. It’s not an easy color to pull off. At Leviner Wood, we’re fond of a greenish tweed sportcoat worn over grey flannels or khaki whipcords. The more adverturous of you have ordered green striped shirts, lime green ties and Kelly green blazers. Not to wear together, we hope.

Regardless of how much of the hue that you’re sporting, we hope that you’re doing so while wearing brown shoes. Actually, we hope that you’re wearing brown shoes almost exclusively. Just ask the Irish of Western Europe, the Italians, brown shoes (especially brown suede shoes) go with everything except a tuxedo — regardless of what Daniel Day Lewis may wear. (We have a hard time advocating brown shoes with black trousers, and today you wouldn’t want to be mistaken for a black and tan.)

As we mentioned above, brown shoes go with every color suit or odd trouser. The one rule of thumb to which we loosely subscribe is that lighter colors look best in spring and summer, darker in fall and winter.

(Allen Edmonds Strand model in walnut calf shown with gray flannel trousers)

(The same model shown in brown burnished calf with navy pinstripes.)

Whether you choose tan, saddle, or dark brown is up to you. But when you do choose black shoe polish if you’d like them to immediately begin to take on the patina of age. Dark brown polish on lighter shoes has the same effect. Berluti (that’s a pair above) experiments with mixtures of all kinds of colors. Try a little Bordeaux/oxblood/maroon mixed in with dark brown or black to add depth.

Or do like we do. Wear them to a pub tonight and don’t clean the Guinness off them before you polish them tomorrow.

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