More than worthy of a spot in the Footwear Hall Of Fame – not to mention a permanent fixture in the Costume Institute at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art – the quintessential shoe in all discerning wardrobes has to be the Gucci loafer. Striding through the decades and changes in creative direction, in a sweeping selection of seasonal updates and iterations, few shoes can boast of such a storied past, and, right now, be more relevant than ever.
Something of a pioneer in the business-casual movement, recognising a growing appetite for the relaxed, louche styling of the classic brown loafer for more formal moments, Aldo Gucci – son of founder Guccio Gucci– answered the demands of the 'jet set' elite in creating a smart, business-appropriate shoe infused with the nonchalance of a moccasin-style edge. Adding a nod to the house’s equestrian, saddle-making heritage with the leather, snaffle and hardware elements, and, in 1953, the black Horsebit Loafer was born.
Evolving in form, style and silhouette, but always retaining that balance of beauty and functionality so fundamental to the brand, fast forward to now and the Gucci loafer has been injected with new egalitarian energy. From slipper to slide to driver, and in leather, suede or embroidered, in the Horsebit, Brixton, Jordaan or Princetown – for both men and women – Creative Director Alessandro Michele whips up an eclectic mix of the classic with a signature splash of directional styles.
A true style perennial and an ultimate power piece, start out with the classics, then build in a few seasonal updates to get your Gucci loafer game strong.