If you love adding different styles of shoes to your wardrobe, having a pair or two of Monk Straps in your collection is surely a must. Monk Straps are one of the most commonly used shoe types all over the world, for formal as well as casual occasions. However, the different types and colors of Monk Straps that are available in the market might make it pretty challenging for you to pick the right pair. To help you know about the structuring and pairing of different types of monk straps, we have curated some really important information right here.
A brief History of Monk Strap Shoes:
The exact origin of Monk Strap shoes remains a mystery. However, there are certainly some amazing stories that surround the same. Many historians believe that these shoes got named due to their invention by a monk from the Alps. A visitor from England actually saw the monk wearing these shoes, got back home, and added a strap to the design to create the modern-day Monk Strap Shoes. However, it is a recorded fact that these shoes arrived in the world market in 1901 after getting patented. Thereafter, various different types started popping from the base of single strap Monk Shoes.
A. Types of Monk Strap Shoes:
1. Single Strap Monk Shoes
These only have a single broad strap that gets fastened over the instep, using a saddle buckle. The strap after getting fastened faces either the welt or the heels. Single Strap Monks usually have a neater profile, providing a more elegant look. They are perfect for a formal as well as a business casual look. However, Single Monk straps are strictly a no-no for any kind of a White Tie event. Apart from classic black; oxblood, deep blue, mustard yellow, and forest green are some of the most popular colors for a single strap Monk.
- Recommended for: office wear, business meets
- Best suited with: trousers, blazers, tweeds
2. Double Strap Monk Shoes
Double Monks are perfect for those who want to show off their shoes even when they are standing. The buckle of a single strap Monk is usually not visible in most situations; however, the buckles of a double strap Monk are visible clearly even when you are standing or walking. These types of Monks usually provide you with a more casual look. One of the straps in a double strap monk faces towards help whereas, the other one is fastened horizontally across the instep. Black, Brown, and Burgundy are three of the most common colors available in this style.
- Recommended for: casual occasions, business casuals
- Best suited with: chino and blazer, navy and grey suits
3. Triple Strap Monk Shoes
Triple strap monk shoes are considered to be highly luxurious as well as trendy. Not everyone can casually carry these highly stylish pairs of shoes. They are usually high ankle shoes and have an additional strap that fastens around the ankle. Not only are these highly complex in look but can also be quite tricky to wear as well as to walk around.
- Recommended for: highly casual and trendy look
- Best suited with: jeans, chinos, shorts
4. Monk Strap Boots
If you are a boot lover, you certainly need a pair of Monk Strap boots in your wardrobe. These boots actually look quite elegant and provide you with a distinct look from any other type of boots. These boots can be either single strap or even double strap, which are placed higher than the traditional Monk Strap shoes.
- Recommended for: casual occasions
- Best suited with: tweed suits, jeans
B. Different Material for Monk Staps Shoes:
1. Leather Monk Strap Shoes
There is definitely nothing better than those fine lines of aging on natural leather monk strap shoes. However, you should consider going in with a leather monk shoe only if can give proper care to your shoes and tend to keep them in your wardrobe for a long period of time. Try to fetch a pair of leather monks curated from France, the UK, or Italy to ensure the use of high-quality leather.
2. Suede Monk Strap Shoes
Suede is also considered to be natural leather, however; it surely does have different properties than traditional leather products. Suede shoes are not as durable as leather shoes and do not age pretty well. Also, if you live in a humid climate, these are really not recommended for you as Suede absorbs water and would get ruined within a few months. If you live in a dry climate and keep switching your wardrobe after a short amount of time, Suede monks are the ones to go for you.
C. Monk Strap Shoes for Different Occasions:
- Formal: You can never go wrong with a pair of single strap leather monks paired with formal attire. For a black-tie event, strictly stick to a pair of single strap black monks, paired with a pitch-black suit. You can even pick forest green monk straps to pair with light-colored formal suits. For dark brown or navy-blue suits, you can also try pairing burgundy or oxblood single strap monks.
- Semi-Formal: You can pick single as well as double strap monks for semi-formal events like parties as well as weddings. While going in with a full suit, nothing can pair better than a dark brown single strap Monks. Double strap monks go well with chinos paired with shirts and blazers.
- Casual: Monk straps are highly versatile and can also be easily carried for casual occasions. For winters, you can comfortably pair your blue jeans and sweater with tan or brown double monk straps. For a simple and subtle casual look, you can also pair your grey trousers and t-shirt with black monks.
- Smart Casual: You can pair your suede double monks with your shorts and blazer for a laid-back summer look. You can also pair your double monks with your light-colored chinos or trousers, along with a linen shirt. Try out your brown single strap monks with your beige trousers, combined with a pure white button-down shirt.
- Business Casual: It is highly recommended to stick to single strap monks for any kind of business occasion. You can pair single strap, oxblood, or burgundy monks with a classic grey business suit, along with a patterned tie and a pocket square for the perfect look. You can also confidently carry a charcoal suit, paired with brown, leather monk straps.
D. Choosing the right Color:
The color of monk straps that you may wear can actually make a whole lot of difference to your overall outlook. Some of the most commonly used colors for monks and their best pairs are as listed below:
- Black: Black is surely the best pick for a formal as well as a business look. However, they are not really versatile and becoming less popular with time. However, having at least a single pair of black double strap monks is highly recommended to be on the safe side.
- Brown: Brown is actually the most common color that people prefer for their monks. They are highly versatile and are actually available in all shades, ranging from light to dark. They can be worn with confidence even in formal as well as casual occasions.
- Oxblood / Burgundy: For ones who wish to stand out of the crowd, Burgundy Monks actually look really classy when paired with navy blue suits or blue jeans.
E. Pairing Monk Strap Shoes:
- With Jeans: Monk Straps actually look pretty classy when paired with your slim-fitted jeans. With dark-colored denim jeans, you can pick a pair of tan-colored Monk straps. A combination of slim-fit blue jeans with a blazer and brown belt can be paired with brown Monk straps. If you wish to be more stylish and trendier, you can also try out colors like forest green, mustard yellow, and deep blue Monks with your jeans.
- With Suits: The best combination of Monk straps is sure with a carefully tailored suit. To pair with your suits, brown and black Monks are surely the best picks. For a black formal suit, you should strictly stick to a single strap black Monk. However, other classic colors like grey, beige, navy, and charcoal can also be paired with single or double strap brown monks. For a unique combination, you can also mix and match burgundy, or oxblood-colored monks with your suits.
- With Shorts: It could be quite challenging to confidently pull off a pair of Monk straps with your shorts. However, a pair of double strap monks can actually look really cool with your casual shorts. Just keep in mind that you pair your monks only with slim-fitting shorts. Brown double strap monks look great with classic white and other light-colored shorts. For black colors shorts, go in for black double strap monks.
Tips to Wear Monk Strap Shoes:
- For highly formal and business events, the neat and slick silhouette of single strap monks works out the best.
- For a more relaxed and casual party look, nothing can beat a pair of double strap Monks.
- To create e unique fashion statement, you can consider picking a pair of mustard yellow, oxblood, deep blue, or forest green Monk straps.
- Single strap Black Monks should be reserved strictly for black-tie formal events.
- If you are willing to pair double strap monks with your shorts, avoid wearing a pair of socks for a neater look.
- If you are picking up Monk Straps for the very first time, consider picking a brown pair. They are highly versatile and help you become comfortable with this classic style.
- Pick a black pair of Monk Straps only if you have a lot of charcoal and black suits in your wardrobe. Else consider going in for a burgundy or an oxblood pair.
- For experimenting a fresh look, you can also buy a lighter shade of brown or tan.
- For a trendier look, you can leave one strap of your double monks unbuckled on casual occasions.
- Avoid pairing your Monk Straps with Tail Coats, Morning Coats, and even Tuxedos.
- Monk Straps work out well with shorts. However, never try them with your sports shorts or other athletic wearables.
- Never go in for an unknown brand for your Monk Straps. Also, do not go in for an inferior material or craftsmanship. A high-quality pair of Monk Straps will surely pay you back in the long run.
- Do not slip in your feet into Monk Straps like loafers. Always unbuckle and buckle back your Monk Straps to make them last long, just like a pair of laced shoes.
- Avoid Picking Monk Straps with extraordinarily big or shiny strap buckles. They may completely overturn the effect of a classic pair of Monks.
- Never leave your single strap Monks unbuckled in any case.
Going through all the above-mentioned tips and pairing options, you must be quite clear about your choice of Monk Straps. However, we would always recommend you to have more than one pair of Monk Straps in your wardrobe to mix and match. Also, we can pretty much ensure you that once you get used to this amazing style of men’s footwear, you will keep going back to add another pair of Monk Straps to your wardrobe collection.