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Come summer, it’s all too easy to abandon other shoes in favor of sneakers and sandals, preferred for their ease and casualness. But there’s another shoe that’s equally easy to wear and suitable for a range of occasions — the loafer. A shoe relegated to fall by many the loafer very much summer-appropriate.
While you might harbor some reservations about how to incorporate the shoe into your summer wardrobe, we’ve already demonstrated one way of doing it — the underrated pairing with athletic shorts — but beyond that it’s as simple as keeping the same outfits you’ve wearing and swapping out those slides and sneakers for a pair of penny loafers or a supple suede pair.
Below we’ve rounded up 12 loafers for elevating your already established summer looks, from the classic Weejuns to the famed Gucci Horsebit.
G.H. Bass Logan Flat Strap Weejuns
There’s a reason the Weejuns remain the go-to loafer for many — they’re as classic as classic gets. If you have yet to experience the joy that is owning a pair of Weejuns, we recommend snagging a pair for the few months of summer we have left and wearing them with anything and everything.
These Patnoflex loafers from Astorflex offer a less dressy vibe than most loafers you’re likely to encounter on the market, largely thanks to the European aged leather that lends it a well-worn look. Consider them your go-to pair of weekend loafers.
Todd Snyder x Rubinacci Exclusive Marphy Loafer
For those in search of something that resembles and extremely expensive slipper, look no further than the Marphy Loafer from Todd Snyder’s exclusive partnership with Rubinacci. Crafted using a suede outer and malleable leather sole, the shoes are able to provide both durability and elegance in the form of a sleek, slipper-esque loafer.
Quoddy RL Sport Penny Loafers
Whether you find yourself on a boat or not this summer, these penny loafers from Maine-based shoe brand Quoddy provide a reprieve from the ubiquitous boat shoes that tend to dominate the season all while remaining highly functional thanks to the Vibram sole.
UO Leather Loafer
Sure, you’ve heard of two-tone loafers but what about three-tone? This pair from Urban Outfitters seamlessly melds three very different colors into one handsome shoe, offering both contrast and wearability with the addition of the tan leather. And for a cool $69, you really can’t beat ’em.
Alanui x Sebago Dan Loafer
If you like your penny loafers with a little extra pizzazz, these from Sebago (made in collaboration with Italian knitwear brand Alanui) keeps the silhouette of their popular Dan style, outfitting them with single-colored yarn around the ankle for a subtle addition of color, making for a shoe that’s classic but not too classic.
Allen Edmonds Wilder Suede Venetian Slip-On Loafer
As classic as the penny loafer is, it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, so for a less preppy take on the loafer, look no further than Allen Edmonds’ venetian slip-ons. The almond-toed shoes are still casual enough to throw on with a pair of shorts, the suede uppers working to elevate whatever clothes you see fit to pair with them. Plus, we’re big fans of the stark white soles to make them just a touch more modern.
Blackstock & Weber The Ellis Penny Loafer
Two-tone shoes have been having a moment ever since The Weeknd donned a pair of black and white creepers for the Halftime Show at this years Superbowl. The color combination in tandem with the creeper silhouette can be a lot for us regular folks, so we opted for the same color combo but in the form of a classic (and much more approachable) penny loafer. Keep things simple and pair them with a crisp white tee and dark-wash jeans, letting the shoes speak for themselves.
Sperry Leeward Penny Loafer
It’s safe to assume you already have a pair of boat shoes in your repertoire, so why not explore everything else Sperry has to offer, like these Leeward Penny Loafers. Crafted from genuine leather uppers and featuring unlined hand-sewn construction, the loafers are as classic as the brand’s iconic boat shoe, still slightly nautical (and fit for boating) but not so overdone.
Scarosso William Brown Loafer
The rich leather of these loafers from Scarosso deserves to be highlighted, so we envision them with a pair of ivory linen pants so they’ll really stand out and be sure to draw everyone’s attention (and envy).
Sid Mashburn Camp Leather Loafers
Sid Mashburn takes the moccasin silhouette and makes it a little less slipper-like by rendering them from a smooth leather and placing them on durable rubber soles.
Gucci 1953 Horsebit Leather Loafer
Numerous iterations of the Gucci loafer exist today, from mules to heeled versions, but we’ll always have a fondness for the ones that started it all — the 1953 Horsebit. Regardless of trends, these Gucci loafers will always remain an icon and wardrobe staple, the ideal finishing touch to a pair of shorts and a tee. While they may be pricey, the amount of wear you’ll get out of them (beyond summer, too) makes them well worth the price.
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Read More:The 12 Best Loafers for Men This Summer