Where can I get a pair of those double monk strap shoes you see so much on the street style blogs these days? Do you think it’s OK to wear them with a suit for work?
Mr Dandy: All the dandies have been stepping out in dub monks for a while now, and I’ll take any excuse to swap boring formal shoes with good-looking kickers! Valentino’s come in all-black with chunky heels and studs across the straps (HK$6,900; The Landmark, Central, tel: 2530 2621). You could get Gucci’s in plain black leather (HK$5,250; Harbour City, Tsim Sha Tsui, tel: 2199 7728), but why not go for the tan-coloured ostrich (HK$15,000)? Or splurge on Berluti’s Massimos (HK$18,400; Ocean Terminal, Harbour City, tel: 2376 3533) or boots (HK$21,400) in shadow-toned purple, burgundy or brown. Pair them with a slimmer trouser cut to really show them off.
Mr Dapper: The double monk strap fits somewhere between the formality of an oxford and the casualness of a derby. Many trace the monk strap to 15th-century friars in the Alps though I doubt the originals were as luxurious and finely crafted as today’s. Tassels (The Landmark, tel: 2789 9911) confirms the style is popular in Hong Kong. Their stock includes Edward Green, Crockett & Jones and Bontoni, but they also provide made-to-order. Church’s makes two styles, Cowes (HK$5,450; Prince’s Building, Central, tel: 2536 0462) and Burghley (HK$8,600). John Lobb, meanwhile, crafts them with diagonal or straight straps (HK$10,000 to HK$13,200; Mandarin Oriental, 5 Connaught Road, Central, tel: 2537 2229). Personally, I’d reserve them for less formal occasions.
Where can I buy no-show socks to wear with men’s loafers to achieve the no-sock look and keep hygiene under control?
Mr Dapper: The irony is that “noshow” socks always show, rendering them as convincing as a bald man’s combover. I urge you to practise good hygiene instead. Only slip clean feet into shoes with help from Scholl’s odour-controlling sprays, powders and shoe insoles, which are sold at most pharmacies. If afflicted by hyperhidrosis or excessive perspiration, see a doctor. According to Mayoclinic.org, treatments include Botox injections, oral medications, antiperspirants, electrical Iontophoresis and surgery.
Mr Dandy: Hey! What better reason to buy a new shoe collection for autumn-winter? It would be a huge fashion faux pas to wear those little socks if they actually did show. Do a test run at home with a brutally honest pal. Now, if MrPorter.com recommends Falke’s Step Invisible cotton-blend socks in black, white or nude (HK$105 a pair), they must be OK. Marks & Spencer has FreshFeet Trainer Liners in black or white cotton (HK$149 for four pairs; 28 Queen’s Road Central, tel: 2921 8059). HOM does them in bamboo fibre in black, navy or white (HK$ 180 per pair; Sogo, 555 Hennessy Road, Causeway Bay, tel: 2575 0642). If you can face it, market stalls from Causeway Bay to Mong Kok have tons of these things for women, with a few in the mix for guys (HK$10 and up per pair).
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