Saturday, 4 September 2010

Mod Fashion: Bass Weejuns

Founded in 1876, G.H Bass & Co. one of the oldest and most successful American footwear brands. The collection contains a wide range of contemporary footwear in European and American styles. The 'Weejun' part of the Bass Weejun name comes from Norwegian, as it was Norwegian farmers who inspired the original style. The distinctive addition was a strip of leather across the saddle with a diamond cut-out. Initially only worn in the summer at home, the shoe grew in popularity in America to become a significant part of men's casual shoe wardrobe. When American prep. school students in the '50s wishing to make a fashion statement took to inserting a penny into the diamond-shaped slit on their Weejuns, the name penny loafer came to be applied to this style of slip-on and has since stuck.

The classic penny loafers (above, left) come in cognac (pictured), black and burgundy. These penny loafers, or 'beef roll' styles have been very popular, especially as the design of the shoe is so simple and timeless, thus allowing anyone to wear these classic loafers with any outfit.
The simplicity of these shoes is such that come summer time, they look great with classic smart shorts or chinos. Other times of the year they can be dressed up with smart trousers or even suits.

The tassel loafers 'Larkin' (above, right) have the same appeal, but these look great with smart denim jeans.

Over the history of the brand, icons such as Elvis, John F Kennedy, Steve McQueen and Jack Nicholson have donned Bass Weejuns but it's the quality and style that make these shoes cool. Worn with jeans or suit smart trousers, loafers of this quality will always be a fashion staple.

Stuarts London is an official stockist of Bass Weejuns and stock many colours both with or without the tassels.