CHS Debate: Boat Shoes, Yay or Nay
Apr 19, 2010
When I moved to Washington, D.C. five years ago, I was astonished by some of the fashions that residents of the Mid-Atlantic region consider stylish.
Your love of critter pants confounds me to a stupefying degree. And your belief that plaid pants and brightly colored bow-ties are the preferred choice for formal occasions makes me want to gag. But the most polarizing and divisive Mid-Atlantic fashion choice of all has to be the boat shoe.
Some Washingtonians swear by them and love their Hyannis Port appeal. While others insist that boat shoes are for poseurs, the prepster equivalent of the hipster favorite Chuck Taylors. And the zeal with which each side articulates their position has always left me confused, wondering what side I’m really on in this debate.
So when frugal fashion guru The Cheap Chica featured the tasseled moccasin as one of this season’s hottest trends, the explanation she gave for her blooming adoration only deepened my consternation about the boat shoe.
OK, so they’re not the most attractive or sexiest pair of shoes out there and they totally remind me of something my father would wear, but they’ve appeared in every fashion magazine from Glamour to Lucky and they’re starting to grow on me!
She admits that the shoes aren’t attractive or sexy, and that they look like something an AARP recipient would wear, but then she sidesteps her entire argument and asserts that all of that can be overlooked because fashion editors love them.
This, of course, prompts the question: If the editors of Lucky wear Crocs, will you wear them too?
Granted, boat shoes aren’t as far down on the Faux Pas Scale as Crocs. But I just don’t understand the appeal.
I’m willing to accept that this could be a lingering geographic prejudice. After all, I grew up surrounded by cowboy boots not deck shoes. Yet, I wonder if my confusion means that I should be more accepting of this regional footwear selection or if I’m justified in my dislike but feel unsure because I’m in the minority.
Thus, I decided to toss this question to the masses and ask you, my loving readers to help me decide: Are boat shoes preppy chic or totally weak? I look forward to your comments.