Today, we have decided to pen down the differences between the timeless dress shoes, the Oxford, and the one that straddles formal and casual events really well, i.e., the Blucher. People find them exchangeable. If you’re among the same lot, look no further for an elaborate comparison between the design and construction of Blucher and Oxford shoes.
The sleeker the design and the finesse of the shoe, the more formal it looks. And to tell you, Black is evidently more formal than Brown.
As Christian Louboutin has rightly stated―A shoe is not only a design, but it’s a part of your body language, the way you walk. The way you’re going to move is quite dictated by your shoes―shoes actually owe us a lot! They are not just random designs, but part and parcel of our body language. The way we present ourselves and the way people perceive us has a lot to do with the shoes we wear. Don’t believe me? Try wearing a funky neon pair to your workplace!
Jokes apart, we are here to talk about the two most popular shoe styles: Oxfords and Bluchers, but before that, let’s get our knowledge (about shoes) brushed up. Most dress shoes (in fact, all types of shoes, duh!) have toe caps, vamps, quarters, eyelets and laces.
Vamp: It forms the front part of the shoe that covers the toes and instep.
Quarter: It is the back portion of the shoe that wraps around the heel and gets merged with the vamp amidst the foot.
Let’s have an Oxford Vs. Blucher analysis, spanning their anatomy and construction.
- Oxfords are the authoritative dress shoes, so much so that people while getting any standard dress shoes refer to it as being Oxford!
- The history of Oxford shoes is a matter of debate. Some claim this shoe is from Scotland and Ireland where they are referred as Balmorals (named after the Balmoral Castle), while others say it has roots linked to the students of Oxford University.
- The plain cap-toe Oxford shoe prominently has round toes and closed lacing. They usually are low-heeled and have an exposed ankle, much like the Bluchers.
- Notice in the image above; the eyelets are stitched under the vamp, the quarters and facing are secured under the vamp, thelace flaps conjoin at the bottom, and hence, there’s no gapbetween the laces―closed lacing that is!
- This is the most formal option with men, much more formal than Bluchers.
- Oxfords are interchangeable with Balmoral dress shoes, though the design shown here has resemblances with the white buck.
- Traditionally, these shoes were plain and leather-ed, but with evolving trends, we get Oxfords in various patterns (Brogue) and materials (leather, suede, and canvas).
- Types of Oxfords include―Cap Toe and Plain Toe Oxford, Wingtip Oxford, and Whole Cut Oxford. Oxfords with broguing have the the brogue details―holed patterns, foxing and stitching done along the toe cap and through the quarter.
- Consider wearing brown and black leather Oxfords for about any occasion, while you can pick a patent leather pair if going for a tux.
- Blucher―a crossover fellow that spans the formal and informal world pretty well.
- It’s etymology has originally come from Prussian army officer Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher during the Napoleonic Wars, who took it upon himself to redesign boots for comfort.
- The distinctive feature of Bluchers is that they have an open lacing system, i.e., a slight gap is introduced between the lace flaps when the laces are tied, since they do not join at the bottom.
- The standard Blucher has eyelets stitched over the vamp and thequarters and facing is sewn on top of the vamp.
- Bluchers are interchangeably referred as Derby shoes (coming from Great Britain).
- Most Bluchers have leather flaps beneath the ankle area.
- Types of Bucher shoes include―the Cap Toe and the Plain Toe, and the Wingtip type. The plain Blucher is the most formal among these, and can blend well with your day suits.
- The recent trends comprise Bluchers in suede and denims. This is why, Bluchers accord well with khakis and blazers.
- The wingtip brogue Blucher rather falls under the casual lot, and can work as an enhancer to any semiformal or casual outfit.
Well, both these dress shoes have set a benchmark in the fashion world, and can be worn interchangeably. But our fashion sense called for a plain toe Oxford for formal events, and full or semi-brogue Bluchers for casual affairs.