The Monk Strap may not be a shoe that’s on your style radar. It should be. This often overlooked men’s classic offers both clean lines and sartorial boldness.
The men’s Double Monk Strap shoe or ‘Monk’ is immediately recognisable for its unique strap and buckle design detail – single and double straps are both popular. Wear brown or suede Monks with jeans for relaxed cool or choose polished styles with a suit for a twist on traditional formal wear.
In terms of formality, the Monk sits somewhere between the dressy Oxford and the more relaxed Derby. This makes it one of the most versatile shoe styles you can own.
We love scratching beneath the surface of our favourite footwear and the Monk is no exception. We uncovered 5 things you probably don’t know about the Monk below.
1. They have medieval origins
The clue’s in the name. The earliest variations on the Monk were worn by, you guessed it, monks. Traditionally monks wore sandals but they proved impractical for some aspects of monastic life. Buckled, covered shoes began to be worn by monks in the high middle ages and the story goes that an enterprising Englishman took the design back home with him in the 15th century. Monks quickly became a smash hit across Europe.
2. They are a Mediterranean design classic
Across warmer European climes and particularly in Italy, Monks are considered a design classic. Maybe it’s the connections to a relaxed lifestyle or the warmer weather but adding Monks to your wardrobe can give your look an immediate shot of laid-back cool. Wear Monks and feel like a Don.
3. Bond wears Monks
The world’s favourite secret agent is known for his impeccable style even in the face of impending doom. Both Sean Connery and Pierce Brosnan sported Monks in their respective outings as 007. Perhaps when you are constantly on the tail of the globe’s most evil villains you simply don’t have the time to fuss with laces?
4. They have made a serious fashion comeback
The past few years has seen the Monk’s popularity soar. They have never really been off the style grid but the clunkier styles of the 80s and 90s left a lot to be desired. Now, many point to Milanese street style influencer and Instagram icon, Lino Ieluzzi, for bringing the double strapped Monk back into the collective fashion consciousness. Recent collections from Alexander McQueen and YSL have also helped to secure the Monk’s place as a modern footwear favourite.
5. They can help you find your sprezzatura
Sprezzatura is a word coined by 16th century writer, Baldassare Castiglione. It means studied carelessness – in fashion terms - a restrained sense of cool. A very gentlemanly approach to dressing. Today, it is one of the most sought-after looks in men’s fashion. The shoe that has come to embody this feeling is the Monk. Forget about laces and step out with effortless elegance.
Bring your wardrobe up to date today with exquisitely crafted Double Monk Strap shoes from Cobb London. Explore our online store at www.cobblondon.com today and discover our timeless range of classic men’s footwear.
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