Summer and suede? The perfect sizzling pairing.

Guys, prepare for an Indian Summer because things are about to get hot with your footwear. Ditch the rubber flip flops this summer (perhaps permanently, for that matter) for a more sophisticated look that will certainly get you noticed.

People are embracing the boat shoe this season—and rightfully so! It’s been a classic since the ’30s—be one of the few who are doing it right. Save the shiny brown-leather lace-ups for when you’re in your 50s and actually tethering a boat to a dock. For now, while you’re in your prime, stick with the more chic, yet traditional way of looking casual or dressing up.

Add a bit of comfort and style to your casual looks. Pair some Suede Sperry Top-Siders (the original boat shoes from 1935) in blue or black for $65 with a pair of tailored shorts and a structured short-sleeved button down. Or, for a more refined look going out or at work, roll up those tailored, straight-leg dress pants and show a bit of ankle while sporting your suede boat shoes. When paired with a nice blazer and a dress pant with a rolled cuff, there’s no way you can go wrong.

Can’t get into the boat shoe thing? That’s cool, too. If you’re into a more urban look, suede dominates more than just the boat shoe trend this summer. Try a Suede desert boot from Clark’s or a more casual suede ankle boot from Calvin Klein. Both work great, sock-less and with shorts, too.

Don’t let the material fool you. It may be hot outside, but pairing suede with some classic summer garb is surely going to be making your appeal that much hotter.

Be Sauve, Men’s Fashion Blog,, July 20, 2010