The confusion is understandable, as they're all essentially describing the same shoe, just in slightly different styles. Born in the highlands of Scotland and the marshy bogs of Ireland, this sturdy leather shoe was traditionally seen only in the country. The intricate patterns of punched holes served a rather pragmatic function—allowing water to drain from the shoes while walking through wet terrain. Known as brogues in the United Kingdom, they're commonly referred to as wing tips here in America due to the distinctive W pattern on the toe.
The classic design, with a pointed, perforated toe cap that runs along the sides, ending at the ball of the foot. Most other seams feature serrated edges and perforations as well.
Punched Cap Toe
First designed by John Lobb in 1937, the plain oxford lace-up has decorative perforations in the center of the toe cap and along the cap's edge. Also known as half or semi-brogues.
The wings of the toe cap extend the full length of the shoe along the side. At times, known in the US as "English" brogues and in England as "American" brogues.
Brogue boots are having a moment this fall. We rounded up the best of the season.