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Let's talk business casual shoes

So I'm in need of a pair of business casual shoes for a probable new job I'll be getting next week. I had a nice pair of brown Steve maddens but they bit the dust a few months ago.

I was at Nordstrom rack and came across a really nice pair of cole haan brown leather shoes (looked like a wingtip style) that were 150 bucks down from 350. They have a leather sole and are super nice.

What kind of pants can you wear with these really nice shoes, color wise? Are they overkill? I usually buy 50-60 dollar shows and never have put my feet in a shoe like this! Oh and the sole is super slick, is that normal?

Anywho, if that's a dumb idea I could use some suggestions on what type of shoe to get. I'm trying to purchase something tomorrow if at all possible. Budget is 100 bucks but I'll splurge on those haan's if they'd be a good buy.
 
I've had a pair of leather Dockers that I have worn to work for the past two years. Working with harsh chemicals I needed something fairly inexpensive that I wouldn't be too upset if something happened to them. I actually just polished them up tonight and they look brand new. Also, they are extremely comfortable.

Edit: couldn't pull a pic with my phone, but they're called Shelter Mens Oxfords. For the price I've been very happy with them.
 
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I wear a pair of brown Bass oxfords or cordovan penny loafers on most business casual Fridays. Either work well with khakis. The ones you found sound a bit dressier. Depending on the shade of brown, tan or light gray would work.
 
Prince is right on with color. Leather soles are usually very slick when new. Walk on rougher concrete sidewalks, parking lots, ect and the bottom will scuff quickly and the slickness will disappear. I have been wearing leather soled shoes all of my 68 year old life and like them.


The leather sole has an advantage over rubber soles. On a carpeted surface they will slide easier and not stick like a rubber sole. On vinyl or slick surfaces that get wet, they are not nearly as slippery, and will help prevent falls.
 
I've never had shoes with a leather sole, and the post above definitely has me interested. I just wanted to add one tip that I use when buying new leather shoes. I make sure to wear a pair of jeans to see how the shoes look with them. I can't speak for anyone else, but I can't picture how well a pair of shoes will go with jeans even half as well as I can picture them with khakis.
 
Good points everyone. So those cole haan shoes are probably too classy for biz casual?

I still don't really know what to look for then! I liked my Steve maddens. They were square toe slip on shoes. Really nice but I feel they are pretty "old school" nowadays. Am I off the mark there?

I want a pair of shoes to wear with grey slacks, blue slacks, dockers khakis, and dark jeans. What pair (color and style) would be best for that?
 
I love my 1901 wingtips from Nordstroms. I don't know if it is true or not but one of the sales clerks told me they were made in Cole Haan's Brazil factory. Very affordable in price and great for standing all day in the office.
 
I love my 1901 wingtips from Nordstroms. I don't know if it is true or not but one of the sales clerks told me they were made in Cole Haan's Brazil factory. Very affordable in price and great for standing all day in the office.

Sweet I like wing tips too! What did they cost?
 
Wingtips are perfect for business casual. A medium brown would work best. That would work with dark jeans, khakis, as well as grey and navy slacks. People often think wingtips are "fancy" but they are on the informal end of dress shoes. Regarding leather soles, you have to consider the climate where you live, and where you'll be wearing the shoes. Wet weather and rough surfaces will trash leather smiles fairly quickly.
 
Maybe I am right off the rails here but what about a nice pair of leather boat shoes? I like the red wings hand sewn heritage like the #9155's.

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Excuse me if I am wrong on this suggestion as the term "business casual" means vastly different things in different work environments.

I would suggest waiting it out for a week or two and see what the norm is at your new house of employment. I would hate for you to buy a nice pair of wingtips and not feel comfortable in them at the office because business casual is on the casual side. Also your social mates may wonder whats up if you show up after work at the local pub wearing a pair of dressy shoes.

I suggested the red wing boat shoes to have you think outside box, I think the boat shoes show a refined class without being to stuffy: they are made in the USA, they are handcrafted of quality materials, you can have them resoled, and if taken care of will last many many years. Also they can do a bit of double duty as you can wear them around town with a nice pair or jeans or even shorts in the summer.
 
Thanks for the tip on boat shoes, those are pretty nice! I've been to that office many times and there's people on the casual side of biz casual and people on the business side of it. I'd rather dress on the business side just so they see I care about myself and the job and would like to stay for the long term :)

I wish I could wait two weeks but as it stands I don't have shoes for that environment at all. Not counting the shoes I'll wear today but those are super dressy black shoes.

Leather soles are really nice but I'm in boulder, co where it's very wet in the winter with snow. The summers are dry so maybe ill hold off on those until summer.

I saw a pair of dockers oxfords which look really nice. I may have to mail order them as no one locally carries my size (13). I'll check out some boat shoes and oxfords after my meeting today!

Jim
 
You can also shop your local thrift stores for the mean time while you save up some cash. There is a recent post in this forum of a guy finding Aldens at the goodwill. You never know, but used shoes are not ideal just temporary.

I care about myself and the job and would like to stay for the long term :)
Remember you feet are important, buy good (quality, fit, comfort) shoes. You will want to be mentally alert and ready at your new job, if your physiological needs are not met on the maslow hierarchy of needs, you will not excel to higher thinking (metamotivation).
 

Doc4

Stumpy in cold weather
Maybe I am right off the rails here but what about a nice pair of leather boat shoes? I like the red wings hand sewn heritage like the #9155's.

Excuse me if I am wrong on this suggestion as the term "business casual" means vastly different things in different work environments.

I would suggest waiting it out for a week or two and see what the norm is at your new house of employment.

Good point on the different interpretations of Business Casual.

For me, those boat shoes would be far too casual, but I know that other people would say they are just fine for the "bus-cas workplace" where they work.

Not knowing the specific dynamics of that workplace, I'd say "no" to buying a pair of boat shoes and blowing what might be a very limited budget. If/when you find that these shoes fit your workplace, then it's time to get them if you like them.



The shoes I had in mind right off the bat were a pair of chukkas ... not black, as that colour implies more formality ... but a nice brown, tan or burgundy/oxblood. Or a pair of desert boots or suede chukkas if you want to be slightly less dressy. And by "chukka" in this context I mean the dress-shoe-style ones, not the "brown sneaker" variety that also gets the label ...

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Doc4

Stumpy in cold weather
There are only two rules for dressing "business casual":

1. do a really good job tucking in those sticky-outy tags, and
2. don't let anyone see you from behind.

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Given the choice of too dressy or not dressy enough I always go with too dressy.

I think wingtips would be fine. If the dress mode is very casual I would avoid shoes with a mirror shine.
 
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