It may be tipping it down outside today, but as of March 20th, it’s now officially spring in the UK.
For Herring, that means suede. Although there may be a few showers about, the sunshine is on its way. As long as you check a weather app to ensure you avoid a sudden monsoon before you step out, you will be fine with suede as it’s not as fragile as you think.
As one of our wise shoe gurus Sean said: “People are just set in their ways thinking wet weather will destroy suede shoes. Just like a leather shoe, if treated and maintained correctly, they shouldn’t have any issues.”
And not all suedes are the same. The better the quality, the easier it is to maintain. It will not surprise you to learn that Herring only uses the best materials.
In my article from 2015, I wrote about how to care for calf and suede shoes and my advice still stands. When they are brand-new, the best practice would be to treat them with a protection cream or spray. Our warehouse operators will spray yours for you before they dispatch them. They are very decent chaps like that!
Then, just as you would polish your leather footwear, you need to look after your suede equivalents in the following (abridged) way: Remove laces, remove dirt or marks with a crepe or brass suede brush, apply cleaner mixed into water, rinse off and leave to dry. You are good to go.
So, don’t be put off considering suede, especially as we look forward to warmer days and a little more freedom as the vaccine programme continues to be rolled out.
With that positive attitude on board, I would like to introduce you to some of my favourite suedes.
First up, is the lattice Consort loafer. Not only is it two colours of suede – tan and walnut – but also two textures. For some of you this will be a Marmite-level of love or dislike! Whatever your view, they are superbly handmade using Goodyear-welting for comfort and durability.
While we are on loafers, I must mention the Barcelona II. It’s a bestseller and is available in a range of colours in leather, but in suede we have it in brown with a leather sole for breathability. The classic last shape and design make this a perennial that will never be out of fashion and therefore a great investment.
For alternative colours, try the Prost (with a tassel) and the Enzo (without). Using soft suede uppers and an elegant rubber sole with additional insole padding, these are a clever hybrid of trainer comfort with loafer styling. If you want sneakers, I can suggest the Strike II in stone suede.
Suede is not just for loafers though. As our last blog – The classic Chelsea boot to ease us out of winter – revealed, we have boots in suede too, such as the Purcell II for men and the Tamara for women.
Then there is the chukka. A suede chukka boot is a real classic. We have two styles: The Orkney R and the Fortune. The Orkney R is a stylish chukka boot in a waxy suede made on a sleek last. It looks really fresh, especially with the contrast stitching and with the thin rubber sole. The Fortune is a lightweight and soft chukka style that uses the Steptronic rubber sole to make them incredibly comfortable for all-day wear. This style comes in navy and ginger.
For a more formal setting, I would suggest one of our suede monk shoes, such as the Cardiff II (single monk), Ilminster (double) or the Shalford, or our brogue, the Reading II (available in a wider width).
As you can see from above, there are many suede styles available. Footwear manufacturers would not continue to make them if this upper material had not stood the test of time. You can filter by ‘Suede’ in the ‘Uppers’ section on the left-hand side of the Herring website to view the whole array available or click here. Go on, give suede a go this spring.