‘Shoes are meant for walking’

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Tafadzwa Zimoyo
United States pop singer Jessica Simpson in the late 90’s once sang . . . “shoes are meant for walking”, and that is fact. But what happens if shoes become talk of the day at work?

How many times have you seen people being asked about shoes?

I laughed my lungs out after one of my bosses had a quick look at my shoes and said something was wrong.

Yes, it is true that a man’s most worn pair of shoes can reveal a lot about him. As usual, I was smartly dressed, matching shoes with the belt. Being a fashionista, I never go wrong. I was a bit astonished after she said . . . ummm your shoes!

This then confirmed that ladies indeed believe if you want to see a man’s first impression, look below, I mean at his shoes.

The first thing ladies look at when they meet a guy is his pair of shoes. The choice of shoes reveals how mature the guy is, if he is egotistical or not, and a lot of other things.

Sometimes, something as simple as going on a date straight from work and taking the effort of polishing shoes could bear testimony to a tidy and organised man or someone well invested in the date.

It is clear that for women, shoes are a lot more than just a hiding place for unclipped toenails. So we can generally say the eyes might be the window to the soul, but shoes are the window to just about everything else.

What you choose to put on your feet actually reflects a lot about you. It’s been reported that women judge men’s shoes twice as much as men judge women’s shoes — so guys, it pays to step up your game in terms of footwear. However, whether you realise it or not, here is what your shoes are saying about you.

There aren’t many hard-and-fast rules when it comes to menswear, but matching your belt to your shoes seems to have been one of them for as long as dudes have been suiting up.

The old rule states that: “Thou shalt match the leather colour of your shoes to the leather colour of your belt.”

Dark brown shoes?

Dark brown belt?

Black shoes.

Black belt.

Keep the shades identical and never, ever, ever, ever pair across colour lines.

However, the new rule is mix it up — but with caution.

It means things are changing.

Well that combo of mix it up means you should be playing with different shades of your leather colour — a dark chestnut watch strap, a sandy brown belt, and rich amber lace-ups — is a good way to add a slight amount of visual contrast to your outfit, so long as the shades aren’t jarringly different.

Sue Mira, fashion goddess said there is a caveat, though, and it’s a big one: mixing brown and black is still (mostly) off-limits.

“If it’s incredibly subtle — like if you’re wearing black leather shoes and your belt is so dark a shade of brown that, at first glance, it seems to match — then you get a pass, but it’s not something you should aim for,” she said.

I felt relieved when I heard that it is not necessarily that your shoe should match your belt unless in some situations like with dress shoes or an outfit like a suit.

Let’s look at the aspects of colour shoes. The dressier the outfit, the more the necessity that shoes and belt should match.

However, this does not mean that you have to buy a belt to match every single pair of shoes you own.

If you have a pair of blue shoes, like the Tucano Sky Blue brogues, you don’t need a sky blue belt to wear with them.    Depending on the rest of your outfit, you can go with a black, brown or even grey belt instead.

If you’re wearing a suit, your belt and shoes should not only match in colour, but also in leather and texture.

You want to make sure that you wear the same colour leather throughout your entire outfit.

This includes your shoes, belt, watch strap and any other leather accessories that you choose to wear.

So, if you’re wearing a pair of Manaus Chestnut Brown classic leather lace ups, you want to make sure that your belt is also brown.

It does not necessarily have to be the exact same colour brown, but the closer the better. Here are some common footwear choices of men and what they reveal:

Utility Shoes – “Yes, it’s clear you are interested in hiking and adventure sports. “But are you expecting any of that in this sushi restaurant?”

That’s the first thing you want to say to utility shoes wearers. Some shoes are nice and practical in the situations they were meant to be worn in.

Flip Flops – Flip flops are fun, they are carefree, they are rad and they are cool. When a guy wears flip flops, he gives the impression that he couldn’t care less.

However, there are some secret things he does care about and these include sleeping on a comfy bed and not a futon. You would also find him doing his laundry regularly.

These things could be completely overshadowed by one thing these guys bring – all the great parties.

Dress shoes – Polished and pretty expensive dress shoes signal towards a wine connoisseur.

Someone who still flicks through magazines in their hard copies despite the multiple tablets he has.

However, they could sometimes find themselves either dating in the same social circle or putting their girlfriend in the weird position of not being as well-dressed as their boyfriend.

The advice is to occasionally lighten up and see the flip flop side of things.

Chucks – These are classics and the complete opposite of dress shoes.

Chucks are sometimes accompanied by a guitar because they say “I don’t have any money but I have a cute stubble and messy hair” and they do.

The only actual energy you will see from these people is when they see free coffee or craft beers.

Otherwise, they take life as it comes and are laid back.

Sneakers (Collectible) – Air Jordans in their mint condition are cool anywhere and signal a slight inclination towards sports.

However, these men also listen to some quality music (Daft Punk, Arctic Monkeys, Jay Z, Bruno Mars) particularly indie. They might also follow multiple (minimum 2) food trucks.

The back of their closet might even have some action figures still in their boxes.

Ultimately, even if you are wearing utility shoes, your first date would depend on a lot more than just shoe-talk.

I think I have exhausted on all points about what shoes mean to men. The general populace of men wears black formal shoes to work but hey try to polish them so they always look good. Remember our watch girls are on us.

  • Feedback: tafadzwa.zimoyo@zimpapers.co.zw and facebook, instagram, twitter on Tafadzwa Zimoyo TheBoss

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