Wardrobe Essentials: The Monk Strap Shoe

If like the majority of MFM readers you are always keen to stay on top of current trends in order to look your very best. Everyone has their one fashion item they can’t live without; sometimes its bags, sometimes its accessories. Personally I have a little bit of a fancy footwear addiction, which can be a problem when presented with a considerable number of amazingly fashionable options when shopping for shoes. With the constant array of new footwear trends being present each season, it’s getting increasingly difficult to avoid my regular mantra of ‘buy them all’. One particular footwear style that has been grabbing for attention is the Monk Strap Shoe. 

11th Century Shoes

Historically, monk strap shoes were worn by monks and members of the Roman Catholic clergy dating back to as early as the 11th Century. Hence the reason they are called monk strap shoes. These monks needed a shoe that was simple, and sturdy and long lasting. This kind of shoe offered more protection than the traditional sandal that they were accustomed to wearing. They were cheap and durable and suitable for any occasion whether formal or even informal, perfect shoes for the religious men of the time. It hasn’t been confirmed but it is assumed that the strap going across the top of the shoe is to increase comfort when the men of the monasteries kneel down to pray, as the top of the foot sits along the floor.

monk lookbook 1

For an old fashioned shoe, they have become surprisingly modern in today’s fashion market. They offer a distinctive style that adds an element of distinction, which the traditional lace up can sometimes fall short on. The wonderful thing about the monk strap is that designers are being extremely adventurous with this once traditional style. No longer is it just about a single strap, but double and even triple strap options are becoming a regular occurrence.

However some people don’t believe this style of footwear can offer much diversity in relation to what it can be worn with. Seen as more of a formal shoe normally, people often feel there isn’t a possibility of wearing these shoes in a more casual format. This footwear trend should not be underestimated, as mentioned before; designers are becoming more and more adventurous. There are now styles to suit every possible need from smart all the way down to a more casual way of wearing.

monk lookbook 2

It is more than obvious that these shoes look great when paired with some form of formal wear. A full on suit, smart shirt, tie and over coat will look wonderful topped off with a pair of formal monk strap shoes. But as these shoes are becoming more and more editorial in their design, the ways that you can wear them are practically limitless. You can wear them to bring the current preppy trend to a new level, or maintain your quirky geek look with a quirky version of the monk strap shoe. Because this kind of footwear is traditionally conventional, the wearer is moving into more unconventional territory when selecting their footwear and the outfits that go with them. The monk strap shoe is now available in many number of styles and colours, it is just up to you which style you go for and how many pairs you buy.

Traditionally Formal

As mentioned before the monk strap shoe is a staple piece when looking to ramp up the sophistication for any formal occasion. Even the most formal of shoes can have an edge to them, and the monk strap is all about taking a look to the next level.

curved sole monk shoesmonk strap slip shoesglossy monk shoes

double monk strap shoesleather monk strap shoesbuckle pointed shoes

triple buckle monk shoesabbott monk shoescarter double monk shoes

Quirky and Cool

The new styles and designs of the monk strap shoe are statement pieces in their own right. The reinvention of this shoe trend is nothing short of being a visual spectacle. Ever heard the phrase ‘give a girl the right shoes and she can rule the world’? Well, give a man the most amazing shoes and he can take over the entire solar system. These are feel good shoes at their finest, and are guaranteed to put more than a spring in your step when paired with your own personal style and wardrobe choice.

ellery shoesgrenson double monk shoesmcqueen monk strap loafers

lizard print monk shoesraffia strap monk shoesmonk raffia front shoes

valentino monk strap shoesdunlay monk shoesshanghai monk strap shoes


We are always looking for that pair of statement shoes and with all these choices for the monk strap shoe trend, there is no need to get down on your knees and pray. With the variation in style, every single footwear requirement is fulfilled with no occasion left unaccounted for. This trend is taking the catwalk by storm, and is proving to be a popular choice for all footwear enthusiasts. Our prayers really have been answered and all that’s left to do is go out and work those monk strap shoes like you can walk on water.

What do you think of this trend and do you think it’s something you would love to wear? Let us know in the comments below.