Like mindfulness and avocado on rye, the things that preoccupy the 21st-century man are not the things that our fathers, or our fathers’ fathers, or theirs before that, would have thought twice about. That’s not a criticism. The sheer volume of stuff we’re exposed to these days means our world is a wider and more complex one, particularly where our wardrobes are concerned. No fellow in the 1950s would have wondered whether he needed a shacket. He would have just donned a heavy shirt and fretted about the Cold War.
When it came to shoes, he would have had a good pair and an everyday pair. The former would have been office or church appropriate, polished ceremoniously on Sundays and probably a Derby, Oxford or brogue. His off-duty kicks would have been loafers, deck shoes or, if he was particularly racy, sneakers. Today, there’s a whole phalanx of footwear that runs from the cult and conceptual (see the fervour for Balenciaga’s Triple S sneakers) to the niche (sock sneakers, for example). Which brings us rather nicely to a question we were recently asked.