The COVID-19 pandemic has seen all of us change and adapt to many aspects of our lives including the way we dress and wear our shoes. Working from home has seen the classic Oxford shoe make way for the house slipper and the tailored suit remain on the hanger for the foreseeable as we navigate through this unprecedented time.
While the brown and navy shoe has seen more attention over the past year the black shoe will always remain a menswear staple. A permanent option in most gentlemen’s wardrobes, the black shoe is a primary colour that features in every Barker collection, particularly the Professional collection. The wear in the black shoe is worn has changed over time and its certainly no longer just for black tie or formal occasions.
The majority of styles featured in the Barker Professional collection are available in black calf or polished (Hi-Shine) leather. The iconic black Oxford shoe remains a key style for many working professionals and is available in plain, toe cap or wholecut silhouettes. The most popular Barker styles for the modern man include the Arnold, Malvern and Winsford Oxford shoe styles.
Another black classic in the Professional collection is the Oxford brogue such as the Albert full brogue and the Alfred Semi brogue. The best Barker dress shoes are the Nelson or Armstrong wholecut shoes as they complement formal attire perfectly and will step you in the direction at any formal occasion/event in the future.
The Oxford shoe counterpart is the Derby which is characterised by an open lacing system and is generally seen as a less formal alternative to the classic Oxford. The Derby shoe can still be worn dressed up or down depending on the occasion and is seen more at fashion shows and on catwalks by luxury brands such as Prada, Off White, Maison Margiela and A.P.C. Within the Barker Country collection, you’ll discover the Nairn and Skye Derby shoes which are made from premium calf or grain leather on a British Dainite rubber sole.
During the colder months, a Barker black boot is the favourite style choice no matter if it’s a Brogue, Chelsea, or Chukka boot. Popular men’s boots by Barker include the Calder, Donegal, Mansfield and Orkney styles all of which can be worn smart or with denim jeans/chino trousers for a relaxed casual look.
A slip-on staple that works well in black is the loafer shoe which is available in several style variations including the Penny Loafer, Tassel Loafer and Horsebit Loafer. Popular loafers by Barker include the Caruso, Frank, Ledley, Portsmouth and Studland styles which are available in black calf or hi-shine leather.
If you explore the current Barker collection you’ll find the majority of shoe designs are available in black and a shade of brown (Antique Rosewood, Cedar, Tan and Walnut) as they are the most popular colourways to wear smart or casual no matter what the style is.