The Shoe Snob Blog

September 2, 2014

Things To Know About Shoes Part 4: Fit/Function vs Style

Foster & Son Bespoke oxford, courtesy of Blue Loafers

Foster & Son Bespoke oxford, courtesy of Blue Loafers

1. Most shoe styles (i.e. wholecut vs. full brogue vs. derby etc) will fit different, even if made on the same exact last.

2. The shoemaking process can affect fit. One pair of shoes can fit differently than another in the same exact model and size. For example, how long the shoe was left on the last will affect how “hugging” (aka tight) the shoe will be. Also how well it was lasted.

3. The wholecut (by nature of it being seamless) will not only crease but also stretch the most out of all of the styles of shoe.

 

4. Boots will never fit like oxfords. That being, your heel will not feel as locked in as it does in an oxford. And that is due to the shaft of the boot and needing to make it wide enough for your foot to get in. So, when you try a balmoral boot or chelsea on, DO NOT expect it to fit like your trusted pair of oxfords. And just because it might have a bit of give in the ankle region does not mean that it is not the right size.

5. Monkstraps will not create a great fit for people with low insteps.

6. A cap toe oxford, in theory should crease the least on the vamp (for calfskin shoes). This is not a guarantee however. Another point on cap toes is that creasing on the cap is not always an indication of ill fit, but can very well be an outcome due to your foot (i.e. long vs. short toes) and the pattern not harmonizing. Some caps are intentionally made long for aesthetic reasons and will more likely than not, crease within the cap even with perfect fit.

Aubercy

Aubercy

 

7. The only way to not have heel slip in a loafer is to have them start off as tight so that when they stretch they will be just right.

8. But heel slip is not always down to fit, but sometimes how rigid the heel stiffener is.

9. Suede will give far more and faster than calfskin. If you are a wide width and cannot fit a certain model in a certain size in the calfskin version does not mean that you should rule out that same model in the same size in the suede version. For narrow feet people, well to be honest, suede is dangerous for you (in terms of fit) as it gives a lot and feels a lot different after a few wears.

10. The more seams on a shoe, the more rigid it will feel.

Septieme Largeur

Septieme Largeur

  • Feryll

    What do you think about going up half a size to compensate for the lack of space in the toe area ?
    I am a UK G fit and most shoes are F fit (the nice looking ones are certainly) Is it okay to go up half a size or I should simply look for wide lasts only ?

    • Juan Manuel

      In my case, if I’m for Oxfords, I should go up for that half a size…

      So, I echo what Feryll asked…

      • Juan Manuel

        Soorry, forgot to mention that I’ve got high instep…

    • Andrey Glushenko

      should take g&h fit like in Russia))), realy f width can put in only my hand))) left one, not right. but if u take 1/2 size more take derby shoes,not oxford o shoe toe will goes up

    • TheShoeSnob

      yes it is often common for someone to go up in size to accommodate width, especially if they width option they need is available. It is always preferable to get what you need, but not always available…there is no right or wrong. It won’t be perfect fit but if you love the shoes, then what can you do…