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Shoes: Alden; Photo Courtesy Of: Leather Soul

If you are an avid reader of my blog or know me, you can easily tell that when it comes to shoes, the incorporation of color (bold, bright colors) is very intriguing and important to me. And since I have been writing this blog — not even a year now — I already feel that the incorporation of non-classic colors (red’s, medium blue’s, green’s, yellow’s etc) has become more and more prominent in the collections of up-and-coming shoe designers, particularly and strangely enough in the collections of American designers such as Duckie Brown, Mark McNairy and Rachel Comey. And obviously before this, you always had Berluti, Paul Smith and other French and Italian shoemakers who weren’t afraid to add a good bit of color into their shoes. But no one has yet to truly capture the idea of making a full-on dress shoe with a bright colored sole.

Shoes Above: Rachel Comey

While I have always been curious about this, it really hit me yesterday when my friend and fellow blogger, Style Sage, said that he would like to see more shoes with colored soles. And while you see plenty of pictures here of shoes with colored soles, you will notice that there is a trend about them: they are all casual shoes that you would wear with jeans, khaki’s, cords etc., not anything that you would pair with your suit. I thought about this. I had always been so preoccupied with shoes that have colorful uppers. Yet this is already in existence and quite saturated (in a small sense). Many companies offer shoes in non-traditional colors but after several hours of searching through my pictures as well as the internet, I could not really find one proper dress shoe that had a sole that vibrantly contrasted.

Shoes Above: Mark McNairy

Imagine how cool it would be to see an all black dress brogue with a dress sole the color of the blue that the shoe directly above and to the left has! And while some of you may not be on board with this idea or be able to even imagine it, I bet that if you were to see it, it just might grow on you, that is if you are the adventurous type. The addition of bright colors into footwear is emerging at a rapid pace. You will see this in spring/summer 2011 collections and I bet that by 2012 there will grow a trend of dress shoemakers who will start to color their soles in non-traditional colors. I will kick it off, by finishing my 6th pair with a nude colored sole and start to think about a vibrant color that I can add to my seventh pair which will be a full brogue in an off-white upper. Help me out and think about what bright color goes best with off-white? Cast your votes in the comment section!

Shoes Above Top Row: ts(s)
Shoes Above Bottom Row: Left – Grenson; Right – Gucci

8 thoughts on “Colored Soles”

  1. I like them too – in the past I have had a couple of pairs of Oliver Sweeney with the coloured leather but its disappointing when it starts wearing off ! Recenely I got a great pair of shoe by The Thin Red Line Savile Row and they have tasteful red soles and linings on Dark brown suede minks made by Alfred Sargent – Just enough color to make it look more interesting, not garish at all – I’d get more like this if i could

  2. Great pictures here! Wish the shoes were actually available. I purchased a pair of Michael Toschi Mirco shoes a few months ago. Red sole made of special rubber that is red throughout (no fading). Love them, but they’re so nice I’m afraid to wear them much. Unfortunately, the other shoes you list here aren’t available in the states. What’s a guy in need of colored soles to do? *sigh* Walkover has some cool shoes but the one pair I would get is white and I’m afraid they’d get dirty after a few short wears.

  3. Chris – You should wear your Toschi’s proud!! Most shoes can be cleaned, so you should not be afraid to wear them, just avoid heavy puddles. That is strange that you could not find these other shoes. Mark McNairy and Rachel Comey are both NYC based designers and I believe that many of their shoes sell in shops in NYC? There are definitely options out there, in all honesty, you don’t see much of this in Europe, this is more of a US based phenomenon. I have never seen the Grensons I posted in England. Search and ye shall find….best of luck!

    -Justin, “The Shoe Snob”

  4. Great justin i enjoy your articles, just purchased a pair of black paul smith otter chelsea boots with an orange sole, they look magnificent ! even though i have to admit i’m having some difficulties on how to much them:color pants, shirt etc… 🙂 Thanks

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