Okay, so all my life I've been wearing sneakers. Recently I've decided I want to change that. My only issue being where to start, I want a pair of shoes that will look good with a nice set of jeans and a polo, while still being wearable if I'm feeling super casual.

I was looking at these http://www.clarksusa.com/eng/product/mansell/87706 Specifically in the dark brown variant. But I have been told they look like old italian man shoes. Bah.

Any advice?

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Actually they look like driving shoes. Not much sole to keep you out of the wet and the mud. One of the classics for college would be a set of suede bucks. Timeless, classy, casual, and look great with jeans. Lots of colors to chose from. Do an image search for "suede bucks" and you will get the idea. Retro classy would be what they call "dirty" bucks. Brick red soles are more traditional.

Ya that is a driving shoe.  The worst part is you can't get them resoled easily 

Go online and look at the shoes in the Cabellas catelog (Google will take you there).  While it's an outdoors outfitter, they carry several styles of "walking shoes" that range from a cut above atheletic shoes to footwear that's acceptable for wear with a suit & tie.  

I like those, but I prefer to have at least some lace on a shoe. If you are looking for something for a little more casual, maybe try something like these.

http://tinyurl.com/eddiebaur-oxfords

I like the comfort of sneakers, and for that reason disliked several of the less casual shoes I wore until my first pair of Ecco shoes. They are nearly as comfortable as tennis shoes, and will last for several years, assuming you maintain the leather.

 

On the more dressy side: http://www.eccousa.com/shoes/mens/dress/new-jersey-perf-slip-on/309...

 

More casual: http://www.eccousa.com/shoes/mens/casual/welt-sneaker-tie/2871/deta...

 

They don't go on sale very often.

Jean's and a Polo would go with dress Moccasin / penny loafers.

I also found the Norse Wing on that site.  It has the look of a brogue which is dressy enough for dress casual (and suit) but has the sole that speaks to going for a walk any ware any time.       http://www.clarksusa.com/eng/product/norse_wing/62084

For the college student look it is a great blend of "man with a plan to succeed" and casual.

But style is a personal thing, it really depends on the look you want.  Look through a bunch of catalogs and see if you see a look you like and look a the models shoes.

 

 

I would go for some penny loafers, or some slightly more elegant driving shoes (something like this http://www.selectism.com/news/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/john-lobb-...). Another option is boat shoes, not exactly smart but better than sneakers.


I am also a college student and I am basically in the same position as the original poster. I'm tired of wearing my Nikes all the time for every occassion, including church. I live in Florida so I'm usually wearing kahki shorts or cargo shorts and a nice shirt, kind of similar to the guy on the left in this pic http://newsfashiontrend.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/Mens-fashion.... I like how his shoes go along very nicely with his clothes. Can anyone recommend some shoes that are similar to that? I'm not a big fan of penny loafers/boat shoes so those are out. Thanks

You're looking for a desert boot. I have a few pairs they're thin, which would work for Florida, but they're not so good for Ohio winters. In particular you're looking for a Clarks desert boot if you go for name brand. 

Clarks desert boots seem to be just what I was looking for. Do you think they would look fine with shorts and a polo/long sleeve button down? Or are they just worn with pants?

Boots with shorts are...iffy.  Some people can pull off the look successfully, and some can't.

 

Desert boots are, basically, a dressier-looking version of a hiking boot, so with the right attitude you'll probably look fine.

 

Just please, try to avoid this look:

Haha I definitely would never want to look like that. I was thinking more along the lines of this:

This is the look I was kinda going for. That's probably very similar to how I would look

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