The term “brogue” can be confusing. Some consider it a type of shoe, but it began as a way to describe a pattern of decorative perforations known as broguing. These perforations can be applied to any style shoe – including the Oxford. Many view the Brogue and the Oxford as synonymous. But for true shoe snobs, this could not be further from the truth. There are several styles of shoes that have brogue detailing including designer sneakers, pumps, and ankle boots. What distinguishes an Oxford is the closed laces. All oxfords, whether its men’s or women’s, must have closed laces in order to be considered an Oxford. But an Oxford shoe doesn’t necessarily have to have brogue detailing to be considered an Oxford. Although for many brogue lovers, this detailing is highly desirable. But an Oxford does need a low heel and an exposed ankle to be categorized as an Oxford. For most men, the Oxford has become the standard for the modern dress shoe. Usually made from fine Italian leather, this shoe is very complimentary to a more formal look. However, it’s also a great way to dress up a pair of jeans.
Over time the Oxford has also evolved with new material choices and color combinations. It’s no longer unusual to see a Men’s Oxford in a combination of leather, suede and textile. Women’s Oxfords have also evolved. The latest trends include platform Oxfords, Cutout Oxfords and block heel Oxfords. And many of these new styles also include brogue detailing! Although the Oxford shoe has been around since the mid 1800s, it’s just as popular as ever. Oxfords are the perfect walking shoe, the quintessential men’s dress shoe, and a top choice for professional women. Simply put, an Oxford can be a Brogue and a Brogue can be an Oxford.