I don't think any athletic shoes really work... there are lots of casual shoes though that are not as dressy as loafers.
I had some Sketchers like these that worked for a wide range of needs.
These days, my trusty 100 year old (sic) doc marten oxfords do as well.
Save athletic shoes for when you are being athletic.
Since I wear sneakers with jeans, I'm the wrong guy to ask (but at least I now know I'm dorky). Trying to imagine the scenario where loafers are too dressy, but maybe something like these boat shoes / oxfords fits the bill. http://www.payless.com/store/product/detail.jsp;jsessionid=29DA543C...
Shane--this is exactly what I was thinking. The eccos are cool. Chuck Taylors are cool but a little too casual for what I'm thinking.
Tim--didn't mean to insult. It's a personal preference but jogging shoes/trainers I think are meant for jogging/training. "Sneakers" cover a wide horizon.
As to the dork-ness of this then most boys and a whole lot of men over the last several decades have been 'dorky' if wearing jeans and tennis shoes is considered dorky.
You are absolutely correct.
Shane--Are these the ECCO Golf shoes?
I don't know, I just google imaged "street shoes" and pulled up a pic of the style I was thinking of.
Those are in fact ECCO golf shoes. After some scouring, I found the model on Amazon:
...although I would think that the mock cleats on the bottom would be uncomfortable for everyday wear on pavement.
When are Casual Loafer too dressy?
Will give you an example of both form and function. I wear a pair of casual Sperry Penny Loafers but I think they are a bit too dressy when I'm wearing jeans and a sweatshirt and although they have a great rubber sole, they are not adequate for wearing in grass, going on a walk or doing any kind of outdoor activity. Need something with a little more support.
Okay so it is not too dressy it is an issue of not dressed for the occasion, now I understand.
For support you may just need to change your insole. That should cover going for a walk.
As to out door activities you may need lace up sport shoes for the activity.