That time is now long gone, and the copper penny (now 97.5% zinc) literally costs more than it’s worth. Back in the 1930s, the pay phone in the phone booth cost a paltry two cents. How did the penny loafer get its name? The penny loafer originated in the 1930s inspired by the light, slip-on shoes worn by Norwegian farmers. Putting a penny in each shoe might have become a trend so young teens could call home for a ride back when pay phones were cheaper. #3. Bass adding a strip of leather across the top with the diamond-shaped cutout typical of penny loafers and calling them Weejuns. Mostly worn without socks since the 1960s, men continued to wear their penny loafers with all styles of dress. Aurland took inspiration from America -- Native American moccasins -- that evolved into selling its own version of the penny loafer. Prep students wore them without socks, sometimes repairing them with duct tape. Try wearing penny loafers without socks to create a clean, minimalist silhouette from head to toe, Suede penny loafers offer a versatile option that can be dressed up and dressed down for any situation, Penny loafers can be worn with suits; pair a light coloured suit with a similar tone of loafer for a great summer look and a dark suit with a patent loafer for a more formal look. Penny loafer history. Thus, the penny and the loafer were united. G.H. Loafers are similar in shape to moccasins and are generally made of leather; they can be worn by men, women and children. In terms of formality, they rank just slightly below a tassel loafer and are a great companion for a blazer outfit with Oxford shirts and a tie or bow tie. I have no idea why they are called the penny loafers but that does sound good and they certainly look good. Nowadays, a broader definition can include any shoe that has such a strap, regardless of its construction. The strap on penny loafers was originally a design feature, there to add intrigue to an otherwise simple silhouette. Why Are Gucci Loafers Expensive? Although the kids made loafers a fashion statement, the suits in business and politics never gave up on them. In 1950s America before trainers were invented, the Weejun became the shoe of choice for young men and students. A: Because of the little slot in front where you put a penny. They have a strip of leather called a “saddle” that sits horizontally across the instep. Q: I know what they look like, but why are they called “penny” loafers? I know what they look like, but why are they called "penny" loafers? MASSIVE SAVINGS on the Etro brand especially. And so, the penny loafer was born. And a dressier penny-loafer alternative, the tasseled loafer, became an epithet for attorneys when the first President Bush groused that Bill Clinton was backed by "every lawyer that ever wore a tasseled loafer.". What are penny loafers? They are called penny loafers because in the old days the shoes had a slit on top of it where a coin, a penny, a dime could be fitted, specially if wore by girls, in case they needed to make a phone call. Penny loafers were — and still are — called an tough slip-on. But why are they called penny loafers? My favorite collection of penny loafers actually can be found on Polyvore. No wingtip details. Mine are two pennies I found on the sidewalk while walking around my first days as a New Yorker. The penny loafer’s signature leather strap with an eye-shaped slit was the perfect place to store your two cents for making calls using public phones. One of the particular appeals of penny loafers is that they can be worn as both formal and casual wear, for men and women. Aurland took inspiration from America -- Native American moccasins -- that evolved into selling its own version of the penny loafer. Soon loafers were available in the spectator style (two colours). She likes to wear comfortable shoes, so she is always wearing penny loafers by … Whether you like your footwear old-school or fashion-forward, you won't have to walk far to find penny loafers to suit. They were a staple of the 1980s prep style movement and continue to be a popular choice amongst style icons and celebrities. Quarters wouldn't fit in the shoes, but by then people were wearing Earth shoes, clogs or platform heels, so it didn't matter. Penny loafers are a perfect companion for corduroy pants, chinos, flannel slacks and in the summer even linen or seersucker. I think they have like 1 pair left in each size. And a dressier penny-loafer alternative, the tasseled loafer, became an epithet for attorneys when the first President Bush groused that Bill Clinton was backed by "every lawyer that ever wore a tasseled loafer.". It is a high-end brand, so the logo itself is going to account for the price. 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