What are Wingtip Boots for Men?
Wingtip boots originated in Ireland during the 16th century and their use has changed a lot since then.
Wingtip boots are known as Brogue in Europe, a word derivative from Bróg, an Irish word that means “shoe”. Boots in the 16th century were something men exclusively wore for outdoor activities, and these sturdy leather boots with perforated cap toe were perfect for their climate. The sturdy construction could handle the rough landscape and the perforations drained water from the shoes after walking through wet terrain.
Even though the use of Wingtip boots has widely changed today – they’re considered dress boots – the shape of them has maintained some pf the same characteristics: Wingtip boots feature a pointed cap toe. The name “Wingtip” is due to the cap toe itself that spreads toward the sides of the boot somewhat like a pair of wings. The stitching pattern also contributes to giving the idea of a bird’s wing. As we’ve mentioned, the toe cap is decorated with perforations.
Wingtip Boots combine the style of Wingtip Shoes with the classic boot shape. Wingtip Boots maintain all the features that distinguish Wingtip Shoes: a pointed toe cap that extends on the sides of the shoe like a pair of wings.
Wingtip Boots are usually made from leather, and they can be of different shades and colors. It’s not the color that makes the Wingtip Boot but the wing-shape of the cap toe.
It was during the 1900s that Wingtip Shoes became more popular. These were the times when machines and cars spread into the cities all over the world and suddenly wearing them on occasions different from hunting or performing any outdoor activity became appropriate.
Furthermore, after Fred Astaire began wearing Wingtip Shoes on his dance routines, the shoes became very popular all around the world! From there, the evolution of fashion, including the style of Wingtip Shoes has brought to the Wingtip Boot that we know today.
Today, Leather Men’s Wingtip Boots can come with multiple pieces that form the wings in contrasting colors. The stitch can also be made in a thread that stands out against the leather. The typical decorative perforations are also used to make the boot more original: when the under the perforations is a different color from the piece on top it, for example, you get an interesting style on your Wingtip Boot.
Wingtip Boots are considered semi-formal boots for men – and women. Dress and semi-formal shoes and boots aren’t always comfortable: how many times do you find yourself sacrificing some comfort in the name of a stylish outfit?
Wingtip Boots, however, are one of the best combinations between comfort and style. They have a thin sole and low heel which make them comfortable to walk in. They are tall on the ankle and made from leather so they aren’t exactly ideal for the hot seasons, but during winter and the mid-seasons, they can provide warmth while also being stylish thanks to the quality of the leather and the perforation on the cap toe.
The quality of the leather and the construction also affect the comfort (and price) of the boot, however, if comfort is your top priority, then no Wingtip Boot will ever be more comfortable than a custom bespoke pair. When the leather and the stitching are handcrafted, the boot is softer and the sole is more resilient.
Furthermore, a custom bespoke boot is constructed to your specific feet size and shape from a last (a replica of each of your feet), so that you won’t experience any of those discomforts that you usually have with standard conventional boots.
Resoling your shoe can lengthen the lifespan of your boots by years and even decades. So, when you spend a lot of money on a dress boot – especially if you opted for a custom bespoke one – you definitely want to get as much value out of them as possible!
Not all Wingtip Boots can be resoled so, if you’re purchasing your first pair, you need to pay attention to a couple of details to make sure you’ll be able to have them resoled when you need to.
Goodyear Welted shoes can always be resoled. Make sure your Wingtip Boots are constructed with the Goodyear method instead of Blake rapid stitching or a glued on sole and you can rest assured you’ll be able to have them resoled by nearly any shoemaker/cobbler.
Many cobblers don’t have a Blake stitch machine and so even though Blake stitch soles are ‘technically’ able to be resoled, almost no one can do it.
With a Goodyear welt there is no machine needed so even your most basic country cobbler can do it with ease.
There are different types of Goodyear welt construction, namely 180, 270 and 360. The 180 means the Goodyear stitch goes 1/2 way around the sole which makes it much harder on the cobbler.
The 270 goes 270 degrees (2/3rds) around the sole and is ‘ok’ but not the best.
The Goodyear 360 degree welt which goes all the way around the sole is far superior and the hallmark of a better built shoe.
Not to mention, the best shoe to resole out there, period.
If you can’t ask the seller if the Wingtip Boots of your choice are Goodyear welted boots, here is how you can recognize this type of shoe construction.
Goodyear Welted shoes have two stitching’s:
*the first is on the inside of the shoe where the lining is sewn together;
*The second is the one that sews the welt (a piece of leather running along the outside of the shoe) with the sole.
This way the outside and inside of the shoe aren’t linked which makes it easier to re-sole the shoe when the time comes.
Are Wingtip Boots In Style?
Yes, absolutely. Having been born of necessity in the wet farm and ranch lands of Ireland and Scotland to allow the excess water to drain from their boots. At one point they became so prevalent that they began to take on intricate patterns and symbols or even ranches brands.
Now the intricate patterns are not used to allow water to drain but instead to offer an ornament to adorn these rugged boots that are even more popular now than they were way back then.
So, how can you tell if a Wingtip Boots is Goodyear Welted?
*The stitching on the top of the welt must be visible;
*Look at the bottom of the shoe: the stitching on the bottom must also be visible.
Goodyear Welted is the most durable shoe construction method and it also provides better water resistance so purchasing a pair of Goodyear Welted Wingtip Boots would be an excellent choice no matter what.
When the Men’s Wingtip Boot is instead constructed with the Blake stitch construction method it can also be re-soled but you need to make sure that the shoemaker has the proper machine in their cobler shop, otherwise, they won’t be able to help you. Check this out before purchasing your Wingtip Boots if you want to make sure you’ll be able to have them re-soled.
When we think of dress shoes we usually think of low, flat shoes, but Men’s Wingtip Boots are one of the most elegant pairs of boots that you can have in your closet. For this reason, they can be worn with a suit or a formal outfit, unless it is too classical and elegant.
Black Men’s Wingtip Boots, for example, are ideal with a flannel suit and Brown Leather Men’s Wingtip Boots look always great with jeans – especially dark jeans – and a shirt or a sweater. If your office is more formal than this, and requires more elegant outfits – you may want to opt for some more classical men’s dress shoe models.
Always keep in mind that Men’s Wingtip Boots are considered semi-formal. Causal, and semi-formal office and business looks are okay with them, but top-elegant ones aren’t.
Between jeans and a suit, Wingtip Boots are more suitable to be worn with jeans but can definitely be worn with both. This doesn’t mean that they are an informal pair of shoes. On the contrary, they have rather an elegant look; but the fact is that not every suit looks great with Wingtip Boots.
To make things easier, just keep in mind some simple rules:
*Classic elegant suits – like slim fit suits, navy, and peak lapel ones – look better with flat dress shoes. They do a better job completing the classic look of the outfit.
*When you have a more informal suit – beige suit without a tie, for example – you can pair it with boots. In this case, the Leather Men’s Wingtip Boots are the go-to option.
And what about jeans?
Leather Men’s Wingtip Boots are the ideal option to dress up a pair of jeans. A casual look, like dark jeans and a sweater, can become a semi-formal and yet original one just by pairing it with Brown Men’s Wingtip Boots, for example.
Wingtip Boots and jeans can also be worn with a jacket to create a look that’s elegant while also being comfortable.
Worn with jeans or a suit, Men’s Wingtip Boots are always a way of adding some originality to your outfit and attract some attention.
Leather boots all come originally with leather soles but the evolution in technology has allowed the creation of rubber soles that come with all the advantages of a resistant and waterproof material without affecting the look of the shoes.
There are several reasons why you may prefer Rubber Sole Men’s Wingtip Boots over the Leather Sole ones.
*Rubber Soles are usually more comfortable: they provide better support for walking and standing. If you know you’re going to walk a lot in your boots, opt for a Rubber Sole pair.
*Rubber Soles are waterproof. If you need to wear your Wingtip Boots outdoors, opt for Rubber Sole Men’s Wingtip Boots.
*Rubber Soles can be more durable.
When you opt for a pair of Rubber Sole Men’s Wingtip Boots, however, you want to make sure the rubber sole is not ruining the unique look of your boots. For this purpose, the Dainite Rubber Sole is the top grade rubber sole you can have on your Wingtip Boots.
Dainite is a British soles manufacturer that has been constructing rubber soles for over a century. Their pattern and the quality of their rubber soles are recognized all around the world, and the “Dainite Soles”, today, are utilized by many shoemakers and brands to construct durable quality shoes.
The Dainite Rubber Sole has a very recognizable pattern with small round carvings in the rubber that provide enhanced grip on the ground. Rubber Sole Boots may have a less formal look than Leather Sole Men’s Wingtip Boots, but they are more durable and suitable for long walks or outdoor events. Furthermore, many find the Rubber Sole option more comfortable than the Leather Sole one.
We’ve said that Wingtip Boots are very versatile and that they can be worn with both jeans and suits. But how to pick the most formal type of Wingtip Boots?
We’ve just spoken of soles and, if on one side Rubber Sole Men’s Wingtip Boots can be more comfortable, a leather sole will always look more formal so, if you’re searching for a pair of Wingtip Dress Boots, opt for Leather Sole Men’s Wingtip Boots.
Black Men’s Wingtip Boots. Black leather boots are a way to avoid risk. Among the others, black is always the most elegant option.
Cognac Men’s Wingtip Boots. These boots are more difficult to pair and wear. But with the right suit, they are original and eye-catching Wingtip Dress Boots.
Sartorial Men’s Wingtip Boots. These have another material other than leather as part of the boot (generally a fabric). The material can be tweed or any other fabric type material such as linen or silk.
The absolute Best Wingtip Dress Boots are -without any doubt – custom bespoke ones. No machine will ever have the care, attention to detail, and skills of a human shoemaker. Beginners and the less expert of you may think that machines can make more precise cuts and stitching.
This is 100% wrong: handmade cuts and stitching aren’t only stronger and more durable than machine-made ones, but they also look better.
Bespoke Men’s Wingtip Boots are certainly more expensive than conventional ones, but if you have the budget and you want the best Wingtip Dress Boots, opt for a pair of handmade ones.
We already answered this question in some ways, but here we also want to let you know why – even though they’re certainly more expensive – Handmade Wingtip Boots are better than machine-made ones, and buying them can be worth it even though you’re going to spend a little more.
The first aspect to consider is the quality of the material. With machine-made shoes, you have no chance of picking the material yourself or checking the quality of it.
When you have your Leather Men’s Wingtip Boots handmade from an expert shoemaker, instead, you can choose together the leather, the sole, and further details that are going to affect the overall quality of the shoe.
Bespoke Men’s Wingtip Boots are also more comfortable than the ones you can buy in the stores. It’s because they are constructed on your feet’ size and shape using a last and you won’t find the same level of comfort in any pre-constructed boot you can pick from a shelf – no matter how expensive.
When the leather is handcrafted, it also becomes softer for even better comfort and flexibility.
Bespoke Men’s Wingtip Boots are more durable. Handcrafted leather and handmade cuts and stitching make the shoe more durable. You can opt for a Goodyear Welted method of construction to lengthen your Wingtip Boots allowing you the possibility of having them re-soled in the future.