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The Exclusive

The Best Weatherproof Shoes

Stylish and practical are rarely in step, but MR PORTER has changed all that with this exclusive collection

Tread carefully: in the Northern Hemisphere, we’re about to hit the very depths of winter. That means it’s time to think about how to keep your feet dry in the sleet, snow and driving rain. You never want to be the guy in the office nursing a bad case of trench foot – but rocking up in Moon Boots is maybe a step too far. At the same time, no one wants to leave their beloved pair of desert boots languishing in the closet until spring.

But help is at hand. The MR PORTER team has been beavering away on a collection of shoes smart enough for the boardroom, but durable enough to weather the wet and windy conditions. Earlier this year, we asked some of our favourite brands – John Lobb, Tricker’s and O’Keeffe – to come up with some weatherproof options of the coming season’s most-coveted styles, including Derbies, Chelsea boots and monk straps.

The Chelsea boot: John Lobb

Chelsea boots are a good example of function meets form: handsome footwear that protects the ankle from the elements. Sleek and refined, they’ll work as well with a slim-fitting suit as a good pair of jeans, and what’s more, they don’t carry the bulk of a heavyweight winter boot. Options abound, of course, but this storm-welted pair by John Lobb manages to toe the line between dressed up and well-dressed for downpours. Oh, and it comes in supple calf leather, since you asked.

Styling tip: your trousers should hang no lower than an inch over the tops of the boots; any lower and you’ll look like Mr Jeremy Clarkson. But maybe you’re OK with that.

Wear them with

  • Ermenegildo Zegna Grey Slim-Fit Cashmere and Silk-Blend Blazer

  • Berluti Slim-Fit Denim Jeans

The penny loafer: John Lobb

They might slip on easily enough, but this is a style of shoe that can be tricky to pull off. Plenty of men get it wrong, especially as the weather turns, by wearing them with novelty socks in garish colours. But if in doubt, turn to those historical examples who always got it right – Messrs Paul Newman and Robert Redford were two of the loafer’s biggest advocates, teaming them with relaxed tailoring and knitted polos for a masterclass in louche, Ivy League style. This winter, these John Lobbs will do the job. An exclusive version of the brand’s Lopez loafer, this pair is crafted from water-resistant caviar calf-skin leather and fitted with anti-slip rubber soles to guarantee a sure footing. Hand-crafted in Northampton, England, in a process that involves 190 steps over several weeks, it’s a shoe that means business, or pleasure.

Styling tip: they add a rakish touch to dark grey or navy slim-fit suit.

Wear them with

  • Boglioli Grey Slim-Fit Virgin Wool Suit

  • Brunello Cucinelli 7cm Cashmere Tie

The Brogue Boot: Tricker’s

Sturdy and practical, brogues are resistant to rain and snow. They look good with everything from a suit to jeans to cords (yes, cords – big this season). This Tricker’s pair in shale waterproof leather are finished with a storm-welt sole, built for a lifetime of wear (each pair has a 260-step method of construction). Plus, they’re comfortable to boot; there’s no need to break them as the process includes a wearing-in stage, so they’ll be comfy from the get-go.

Styling tip: as a general rule, in any situation when you’d normally wear regular brogues you can trade up for brogue boots.

Wear them with

  • Folk Virgin Wool Peacoat

  • A.P.C. Saaen Checked Wool Scarf

The Monk strap: O’Keeffe

Monk straps, whether a single or double buckle, are the shoe story of the season. Just about every big name in footwear is making them, and everyone else is wearing them. This offering from O’Keeffe in water-resistant, pebble-grain leather has been oiled and waxed so it can wear its punishment well, while commando soles guarantee slip-free strolling.

Styling tip: these are the perfect finishing touch to sharp suit in navy or pebble grey.

Wear them with

  • Ermenegildo Zegna Blue Slim-Fit Milano Trofeo Wool Suit

  • John Smedley Belvoir Merino Wool Rollneck Sweater

The Hiking Boot: O’Keeffe

A handful of seasons ago, hiking boots only did what they were designed to do – walk a country trail or scale a craggy peak. But just as the sneaker has left the sports arena for the high street, so too the hiking boot has moved from the mountain to the metropolis. The matching colour of the commando rubber sole (chunky toothed, slip-resistant and hard-wearing) on the O’Keeffe Austin boot helps to minimize bulkiness, while the shearling lining provides added warmth and comfort. This pair is also crafted from water-resistant, pebble-grain leather, which means they’ll polish up a treat even if you do decide to take them yomping.

Styling tip: work well with selvedge denim, but they’re also smart enough for chinos or tweed trousers.

Wear them with

  • RRL Two-Tone Knitted Cotton Jacket

  • Incotex Slim-Fit Herringbone Wool and Linen-Blend Trousers

The Derby: Tricker’s

“Tricker’s Derby shoes are the perfect mix of practicality and style,” says Mr David Morris, MR PORTER’s Shoes Buyer. Indeed, this pair will see you through winter’s polar vortex with all of your sartorial credentials in tact – fitted with anti-slip dainite rubber soles and made out of shale waterproof leather, there’s limited chance of slippage or seepage.

Styling tip: unlike Oxfords, Derbies can easily be dressed down as well as up, so you can wear them all day – from the breakfast meeting to the cocktail bar.

Wear them with

  • Wooster + Lardini Striped Wool Rollneck Sweater

  • Maison Margiela Linen and Wool-Blend Trousers