Stepping into style


Nathan Freshwater | Contributor

It can be hard to navigate the terrain of fall style when coming off the laissez-faire attitude of the summer. During the hot months of June and July, you can pair a bright pink shirt with baby blue pants and white shoes, and no one bats an eye.

The same cannot be said for the succeeding months of September and October. Fall is my favorite style season simply for the versatility it offers. One day could be a brown suit with a dark green tie, whilst another day could be a pair of dark blue jeans, a charcoal V-neck, and a leather jacket.

One of the hardest parts of fall style, or any style in general, for that matter, are dress shoes. There are so many varieties of dress shoes nowadays that go beyond the old brown and black Oxfords, that it’s easy to get lost. The first dress shoe you should have ready for fall is the derby.

If you go into any shoe store with knowledgeable staff and ask for a derby shoe, they’ll know what you mean. The derby is defined by the open lacing on the front, and can be dressed up or down.

The second most important shoe to have is the traditional Oxford. The Oxford shoe is your go-to shoe to wear with a suit, but they are not typically a shoe to pair with jeans or chinos.

Lastly, the monk-strap shoe is a dress shoe that can elevate any outfit, but is typically paired with a more casual outfit. It’s easy to spot a monk-strap by the metal buckle and strap prominently featured on the side of it.
No matter which of these shoes you’re sporting, a dark brown leather will be your best option for color as it matches nearly all of the traditional fall colors such as gray, charcoal, green, olive and brown.

If you decide that dress shoes aren’t your style, then the dress boot is always a fun way to switch things up. The Chelsea boot, the chukka and the lace-up boot are three options that you can’t go wrong with. The Chelsea is my favorite as it can be used in formal and informal situations. The chukka and lace-up boots are typically worn with casual wear. It is still the safe bet to have these boots in a dark brown, but experimenting with colors like green or burgundy is the key to finding your own style.