Evening shoes

Sunday, April 11, 2010
Until now, I've always worn black oxfords with my dinner suit. This is perfectly correct, albeit the most informal option, so long as they are plain black and well-polished. However I've always been meaning to take the step up to a pair of proper patent leather evening shoes. The super shine adds a bit of extra elegance and formality to evening wear, and patent shoes are especially important with white tie, which is one of the reasons why I've finally gone out and got a pair.

Evening shoes should be plain fronted black patent oxfords, with as thin a sole as possible. The only option more formal than this would be a pair of evening pumps, which are traditional with white tie and, to a lesser extent, with black tie. These are low cut with a decorative silk bow which should, presumably, match the facings on your dinner suit... although I'm unsure how many men would actually go to quite that length. They can look great, especially with white tie, but are increasingly rare now and also not wildly practical for those of us who might have to walk or use public transport to get to an event.