BASIC-Loafer vs Moccasin

Jul 29, 2022


The difference between a loafer and a moccasin can be quite confusing since they both look very similar but there are important differences which distinguishes them apart.

The best definition for a loafer is a type of shoe without a fastening, that a person’s foot slides into. It is a Casual shoe made of more pieces and a heel. Loafers can also be called open shoes or slip-ons.

The best definition for a moccasin is a formal shoe made of soft leather, a heelless shoe with the sole brought up the sides of the foot and over the toes. A moccasin will always have a flexible outsole making you feel like walking almost barefoot. Moccasins were footwear that was widely used by Native Americans especially hunters and traders.

The most basic and easy way to spot the difference between the two is that moccasins are the ones with laces and are heelless, while the loafers have a heel and are without laces or any fastenings. But don’t confuse the laces on a moccasin with the ones on a regular pair of shoes. These laces are primarily for decoration purposes and do nothing else apart from that.

Because of its characteristics, a moccasin is a shoe that is made of any soft leather like deerskin. It also has the characteristic of having the leather of the upper going from top then around the foot covering it completely.

The loafer is not a shoe for everyone since it does not have laces so we cannot adjust the fit but needs to be lucky enough that our foot girths will be in the average range of people since manufacturers will be using a average last for size grading. The loafer is made of a Vamp which covers the sides and front part of the shoe, an apron which is stitched directly to the vamp and goes upwards finishing in the tongue and often a saddle covering the instep top part of the apron. In certain occasions you will see decorative tassels placed on top of the saddle.

There are different types of loafers; when a whole piece of leather is used without splits it will be called a whole cut loafer. If the top part is stitched but still one piece it will be called a whole cut fake moccasin. It is called fake moccasin because the apron is not stitched onto the vamp to hold them together but only for decoration since it is a whole piece of leather. Sometimes to give a better allowance of fit, an elastic inserts can be added between the vamp and the tongue in the instep area. In a whole cut loafer if the material is elastic like a woven fabric or woven leather, we can reduce the the volume space of the shoe since the material will adapt more to the wearer.

The moccasin is the only shoe where the upper material wraps the foot by under and is stitched on the top part to the apron. Because of this type of construction, the moccasins are one of the most comfortable and flexible shoes on the market. We have two type of moccasins; In the pre-punched moccasin, each components is already punched so it makes it easy to stitch them together. The second type of moccasin is sown onto the last manually. This is a much more elaborated type of tubular moccasin since the technician will sow the vamp and apron together by hand using only his experience and craftmanship.

FUNCTION: The Loafer is an easy slip-on shoe and is best suited to be worn with jeans, shorts and any casual dress or suit. This does not mean you cannot wear also with a more formal look but usually it is a comfortable shoe with comfortable casual wear. The moccasin on the other hand is a more formal shoe to be worn together with a suit for office wear but also here we this type of shoe can be versatile with a more casual look. All depends on the style of the moccasin or loafer.

Italian Footwear Solution always discuss with our customers to understand perfectly their needs in order to give them a perfect match for the occasion in which the shoes will be worn. We have a wide range of moccasins and loafers to suit everyone’s needs. As we always say, the foot should not adapt to the shoe but it is the right shoe which needs to adapt to the correct function of the wearers foot. One shoe fits all approach does not work and we understand that the most important thing is to listen to our customers, then fulfill their requirements and working together with best Italian technicians and materials to offer a beautiful esthetic shoe having in addition a perfect most comfortable fit.

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