Shoes: lined vs. unlined

wnh

Super Member
Pardon my ignorance, but what exactly does this mean? I see a fair amount of talk about this around here, but am clueless. What is the difference, and how do I tell which category my shoes fall under?

Thanks for the continuing education.
 

bd79cc

Super Member
A lined shoe has an intermediate layer of thin leather sewn onto the inside surfaces of the shoe uppers. Usually, this gives the lined shoe interior a smooth finish. An unlined shoe lacks this layer, and you'll usually see the rough "backs" of the hides inside the shoe. Examples of lined shoes would be:

Alden 986 & 987 LHS
Alden 660
Sebago Cayman
Cole-Haan Pinch Penny Loafers

Examples of unlined shoes would be:

Alden for Brooks Brothers LHS (986/987 unlined clones)
Bass Leavitt Weejuns
Sebago Classic Penny Loafers
Sperry Top-Siders Authentic Original (AO) Boat Shoes.

Sorry this is so brief. I'll try pictures next time.
 

Doctor Damage

Connoisseur
I suspect that most leathers are so heavily treated that even un-lined ones don't allow much (if any) "breathing". Perhaps un-lined shoes just feel lighter, because they are.

DocD
 

bigCat

Honors Member
Also,
unlined shoes are preferred for sockless wear.

Now, this part I never understood (but practice). They rub less? They breathe better? What is it about unlined that make them better for sockless wear?

JB

Joe,
I also practice this, but I don't have a 100% explanation (that's why I used term "preferred").

I think that it has to do with the fact that once lining is damaged - it can not be replaced. So extra moisture related to sockless wear does not damage the shoe as much - since outer layer recovers better by itself. Just a theory.

I am relegating a pair of lined SF loafers to sockless wear this season - they served their tour as dress shoes. I will monitor any issues that may arise with this.

BB does not carry EE widths and that is what I need on the Van last - so I am thinking about wearing lined Alden LHS in #8 sockless, but I am scared... Do members who wear shell sockless (what an indulgence!) stick with BB version only?
 

yachtie

Elite Member
I'll wear shell norwegians w/o socks (usu. with khakis) but so seldom that I haven't noticed any adverse effects. I wear some cheepie suede Cole-Hahn's w/o socks more often-but they're unlined...
Based on the impermiability of shell, I'd guess that it'd hold up better than calf in this application. Aldenshop in SF may be able to order unlined shells in your size.
 
Last edited:

TradTeacher

Super Member
Now, this part I never understood (but practice). They rub less? They breathe better? What is it about unlined that make them better for sockless wear?

JB
For me, unlined shoes breathe much, much better. I find that my feet don't sweat at all in unlined shoes like my Sperry A/O's, Quoddy's or Weejuns. However, when wearing "dress shoes", i.e. AE Bradley's or MacNeils, my feet get very hot and tend to sweat easier. I suppose that the unlined leather wicks away moisture better, though this is purely conjecture on my part...

TT
 

Himself

Super Member
For me, unlined shoes breathe much, much better. I find that my feet don't sweat at all in unlined shoes like my Sperry A/O's, Quoddy's or Weejuns. However, when wearing "dress shoes", i.e. AE Bradley's or MacNeils, my feet get very hot and tend to sweat easier. I suppose that the unlined leather wicks away moisture better, though this is purely conjecture on my part...

TT

Boat shoes and loafers fit lower and looser, so a bunch of air pumps in and out with every step.
 

CornoUltimo

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
IMHO unlined shoes are way more comfortable to wear without socks. For me lined shoes slip more without socks, and due to both the smoothness of the leather lining and the extra layer of material I sweat significantly more in lined shoes than in un lined shoes, when I don't wear socks. I would guess that the fibers of the underside of the leather trap air more than smooth lined leather. In my experience there isn't much difference when wearing socks.
 

eagle2250

Connoisseur/Curmudgeon Emeritus - Moderator
Unlined hand sewn shoe designs acquire that comfortably worn-in look much more quickly and to a substantially greater degree than do lined versions of the same shoes. I've confirmed this with both Quoddy Trail and Rancourt designs. :teacha:
 

Rosarito

New Member
Another old thread reboot but I'd like to add a related follow-up question to this thread. How does everyone feel about unlined dress shoes, for example, an unlined black cap toe oxford? I am in the market for some new shoes and noticed that Carmina is offering some nice looking unlined versions of their dressier shoes which struck me as being a little odd.
 

eagle2250

Connoisseur/Curmudgeon Emeritus - Moderator
Another old thread reboot but I'd like to add a related follow-up question to this thread. How does everyone feel about unlined dress shoes, for example, an unlined black cap toe oxford? I am in the market for some new shoes and noticed that Carmina is offering some nice looking unlined versions of their dressier shoes which struck me as being a little odd.

While I cannot claim to own any unlined dress oxfords, I do have unlined pairs of of Alden LHS's that I have worn with coats and ties and I think even with suits on a few occasions. I don't see anything odd about it at all. The real issues at play are comfort and convenience. ;)
 
Your email address will not be publicly visible. We will only use it to contact you to confirm your post.

IMPORTANT: BEFORE POSTING PLEASE CHECK THE DATE OF THE LAST POST OF THIS THREAD. IF IT'S VERY OLD, PLEASE CONSIDER REGISTERING FIRST, AND STARTING A NEW THREAD ABOUT THIS TOPIC.

Deals/Steals

Trad Store Exchange