Patent leather Sanders shoes have a type of japanned leather upper with a high gloss finish. These days men’s patent leather shoes are for formal wear. They tend to have a light weight leather sole for dancing, important should the ultimate faux pas occur and you tread on your partner’s toes during the polka.
The process of patenting leather was first introduced in the United States in the early 19th century. The purpose then was mainly for the peaks of military headwear. In those days the process involved applying layers of linseed oil-based lacquers. With the development of synthetic resins the process has simplified and cut production costs which has made the mass production of patent leather possible.
Undoubtedly a pair of black patent leather plain lace-up shoes is the only correct form of footwear to be worn with black tie or tuxedo. Avoid slip-ons and brogues at all costs. It is a good idea to purchase a slightly wider fitting than your regular width fitting as feet can swell up when dancing. Also ensure the shoes have a thick leather insole running the full length of the inside of the shoes. Your feet need these to breathe properly and no man-made alternative works as well. Sanders shoes offer three superb style options for evening wear: the Ritz, the Strand and the George boot.
Patent leather shoes should be spruced up with a damp cloth along with a mild soap if needed. Should light scratches and scuffs appear in the leather then apply one of the many specialist patent leather cleaners available on the market.