There’s A Reason They’re Called Loafers


Why are they called loafers? Obviously because they’re for loafing. It’s not exactly a shoe that screams ruthless ambition, is it?

No wonder they were embraced so wholeheartedly by college students in the days before meritocracy. This is a shoe for guys so lazy they can’t be bothered to tie laces.

The cartoon was recently posted on our Facebook page. To put it in context, below is a 1962 Bass Weejuns ad extolling the virtues of elegant leisure. Sort of brings up that whole issue of business approriateness again, doesn’t it? — CC


9 Comments on "There’s A Reason They’re Called Loafers"

  1. I spent the bulk of my working life in the entertainment industry where dress has always been a bit more casual than the norm. About halfway through my career, I ended up standardizing on a rotation of nothing but a few pair of calfskin Adlen Handsewn loafers for my office footwear.

    Somewhat ironically; when I retired and became a gentleman of “leisure,” I stopped wearing my Adlen “Leisure” loafers because they reminded me of… work!

  2. Great shoe for casual wear…..and loafing around.

  3. It’s a quirky and charming aspect of the style. Considering the “casual” nature of the jacket (natural, sloping shoulder and minimal if any tapering through the middle) and the shirt (soft, unlined collar and full fit), most boardroom and coutroom appropriate shoes (the black shell cordovan captoe, for instance*) would be out of place. Stated differently, the loafer/mocassin compliments the overall look. At the risk of repetition, I can’t imagine standing before a judge or making a presentation to a board while wearing penny loafers.

    I think Rancourt makes a version of the penny loafer (moc) called the “stitchdown,” which is said to be Weejunesque. One wonders if they’ll add it to their regular stock. #8 shell cordovan gets my vote.

    *my personal preference.

  4. Can anyone speak to the quality of Bean’s loafers lately? I’m tempted cuz they actually sell a 2e wide, which seems hard to find

  5. S.E.
    Doubt you would wear a tweed jacket to court or board room either. I’m a self employed accountant, I only wear a suit / captoes to testify in court or meetings with clients’ and their banksters. I wear Weejuns or equivalents 90% of my workdays, blazers and sport coats. I love the midwest.

    FYI, my $85 central american Weejuns are still doing fine.

  6. Boston Bean | January 13, 2014 at 8:52 pm |

    I wouldn’t dream of buying/wearing any other brand than LL Bean loafers.
    Ostentatiousness is anathema to dyed-in-the-wool Trads.

  7. “Ostentatiousness” is rather ostentatious compared to “ostentation.”

  8. @Christian
    My apologies for using a pentasyllabic word when a quadrisyllabic one would have done. Mea culpa.

  9. @Dgb
    I swear by LL Bean loafers. good looking, long wearing, and most importantly, comfortable. For some reason, LL Bean’s last fits my foot really well.

    I would recommend them to anyone.

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