Men’s footwear: six easy-to-pack summer styles

From beach to yacht to hot city streets, these lighter designs have it covered

Seastar Beachwear Beachcomber espadrilles, $89
Seastar Beachwear Beachcomber espadrilles, $89

Supportive shoes for boat, bike and boardwalk There is such a thing as a stylish but sensible water shoe that can not only be slipped on for walking a shell-lined beach, but will also pass muster at a chic thatched-roof restaurant in St Barths or Nantucket. The gap in the market was filled by Libby Fitzgerald (a former marketing executive at Hermès) and her creative director partner Michael Leva, whose stylish Beachcomber espadrilles ($89) are a functional find for summer. They reimagined the classic espadrille using a fitted, quick-drying neoprene upper and a durable rubber deck sole that protects against sharp objects, stinging sea creatures and hot sand. The result is a comfortable, supportive shoe suitable for boating, biking and even strolling the streets of Manhattan. The men’s espadrilles are available in black, white and navy, as well as vibrant shades such as marine blue and seastar orange, and there’s a striped version too. For a casual holiday, they might be the only pair of shoes you need. seastarbeachwear.com. CHRISTINA OHLY EVANS

From top: Castañer leather espadrilles, $112.35. Varca leather sandals, £45
From top: Castañer leather espadrilles, $112.35. Varca leather sandals, £45

Stylish Spanish espadrilles with an edge The Catalonian label Castañer has been producing traditional Spanish slip-ons since 1927 and now makes them in myriad styles and materials, such as this leather example ($112.35) for men. With its natural jute trim and rubber sole it will be as at home in the city as on the beach. castaner.com. RAPHAËLLE HELMORE

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Handcrafted sailors’ sandals that go from seashore to pool party The avarca (plural avarques) hails originally from Minorca, where the truest examples of the genre are still made. Uniquely comfortable, lightweight and hard-wearing, for centuries this sandal was the chosen footwear of the island’s sailors and fishermen, before its fame spread to Barcelona and beyond; in the UK it’s available under the brand name Varca, whose sandals (£45) are handmade in a Minorcan village. Like all classic designs, this one is ageless, its total simplicity giving it a certain minimalist elegance. Its main elements are a thick strip of leather over the front of the foot and a strap holding the heel in at the back. The undersole is made of recycled lorry tyres, hand-sewn to the leather upper with heavy-duty thread. They take a little wearing in, but once the leather has adjusted to your foot there is no more comfortable shoe in the world. They are also perfect for hot-country travel: wear them on a tropical beach, and keep them on for the pool party. varca.com. PAUL RICHARDSON

JM Weston leather Le Moc moccasins, £435. Gaziano & Girling suede Capri shoes, from £675
JM Weston leather Le Moc moccasins, £435. Gaziano & Girling suede Capri shoes, from £675

Summer moccasins with the comfort of classic slip-ons From JM Weston, the designer behind the 180 penny loafer, the summery moccasin Le Moc (£435) stands in for the French marque’s classic slip-on. Artistic director Michel Perry lightened the original design by softening the inner structure, and included an inner sock and rubber sole inserts for grip. There are eight looks: cream-white, dark brown, blue jean, dark blue and black in grained calfskin, and night blue, camel and pepper grey in suede. Perfect for summer flâneursjmweston.fr. TOM STUBBS

Volley canvas sneakers, from $39.99
Volley canvas sneakers, from $39.99

Light, unstructured shoes with Italian spirit Neapolitan tailoring denotes the kind of unstructured, light, comfortable suiting that helps the denizens of warmer climates exude the casual élan of gentlemen at leisure. The same spirit is now gripping contemporary men’s shoemakers, who are creating lighter, less rigid and more comfortable iterations of classic styles. Among the chicest are these light-lined suede Capris (from £675) in black, fox and mole from Gaziano & Girling, whose bespoke division has a broader, softer shoe range for summer. gazianogirling.com. NICK SCOTT

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Stylish sneakers that feel like slippers I first saw Volleys (from $39.99 a pair) on a trip to Australia years ago – they’re the sneakers that Aussies have worn as enthusiastically as flip-flops since 1939. Designed by a tennis ace, Adrian Quist, as a riff on classic deck shoes after a trip to Rhode Island, they’ve remained largely untweaked – a white sole here, an accent strip there – for the past 70 years. No wonder: I’ve never worn comfier sneakers. They feel like slippers stylish enough to sport around town and are easily laundered. volley.com.auMARK ELLWOOD

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