The monk shoe is THE men’s dress shoe to be seen in, but what is it, and why does it share the same name with someone that lives his life in prayer and contemplation? Well we’ve been contemplating exactly that, and here’s the schuh guide to following the order of the monk.

Name: Monk strap (shortened to “Monk”)

Design: Buckled shoe featuring single or double strap

Key brands: Ted BakerH by Hudson, Oliver Sweeney, Red or Dead

Monks aren’t commonly held in the highest of sartorial stakes but it’s thought that the Monk shoe – and its distinctive strap covering and buckle – originates from the sandal worn by monks

. There’s no place for lace, where ‘the monk” is concerned. Instead there’s a strap and a buckle to save you the trouble of lacing. Generally, “the Monk” will either feature a single, or double strap.

For the last few seasons, it’s been all about the single strap, but the double (and even the triple) is now having its moment. The double monk strap is that little bit more advanced, but pull it off and it is a bona fide head turner.

If you’re the sort of guy, who has numerous pairs of brogues in every shade of brown and black then there’s definitely room in your stash for a pair of “Monks”. Take it from us, they work wonders with a well cut trouser. This beauty from Ted Baker will instantly sharpen up your look.