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During the due diligence phase of the adventure that has been my Gucci loafers, I’ve made it no secret that I was stumped on the style I should ultimately invest in. The decision making process wasn’t helped by the fact that there were so many conflicting opinions online. The “Jordaan vs Brixton loafer” debate that I was having in my head was one of the prime reasons for my ‘paralysis by analysis’. (Other significant reason – hefty price tag 🤑) And it became clear to me that this dilemma was common among a lot of you who bought or are still considering buying a pair of Gucci loafers. So I figured I’d add my voice to the mix and share my thoughts on each of the styles and why I ultimately chose the pair I bought. My thoughts are either going to help or hinder your deliberations but given it’s a 50-50 chance, I’m willing to take that risk! 🙃
Before I get into a comparison, here’s a quick history lesson. The iconic Gucci horsebit loafers date back to the early ‘50s. In fact, earlier versions of the loafers were designed in the 1930s. While the original version was made of heavier saddle leather, today’s design still remains faithful to the original. The iconic shoes have long been considered to bridge the gap between casual and business wear – reimagining the moccasin into a stylish dress shoe.
Comparison between the Jordaan & Brixton
On one side we have the Jordaan, the OG style of the two – and the most traditional loafer style. On the other end, there’s the Brixton – a loafer style made from softer leather with a collapsible heel to convert into a mule. Both styles have an almond toe and the iconic horsebit detail (unsurprisingly, Gucci have worked really hard to trademark and protect over the years – this article was a particularly interesting read).
Style-wise, I’m not so hot on the collapsible heel. While I think it looks great on others, I couldn’t see myself wearing the loafers with the heels folded down. That said, I liked the sound of soft and supple leather, as there is a lot of feedback online about how the Jordaans are a lot stiffer in comparison. That was the crux of my dilemma. Thankfully, with the encouragement of you lot over on Instagram, I had a moment of weakness one Sunday morning and bit the bullet on the Jordaans – shopping with the safety net of free returns given I was still in lockdown.
Within 3 days they arrived, and all the kerfuffle about the Jordaans being stiff and uncomfortable did not ring true to me. Granted, they’re not easy to get on initially, but once they’re on, they’re great! The leather is firm but not uncomfortable, not wholly different from other leather shoes you’d buy.
Lockdown restrictions recently lifted here in Sydney and I paid a visit to the Gucci boutique in town to try on the Brixtons. The leather is noticeably softer and they are very comfortable (a tad easier to put on in comparison to the Jordaans but not overly so). If anything, trying on the Brixtons confirmed to me that I chose the best loafer for my lifestyle. I’m planning on wearing my Jordaan loafers a lot, and the sturdier leather is made to last. But I know a lot of people who opt for the Brixtons like to hedge their bets. The two-in-one style is a big plus if you can see yourself wearing them with the heel collapsed.
Sizing & Price
Both loafers currently retail for $1,175 AUD / $850 USD / £595 GBP. As is the case with most iconic designer pieces, they’re subject to periodical price increases due to their popularity (on the flip side, these typically sell for roughly 70% of the RRP on the preloved market).
Where to buy
I purchased my loafers from Net-A-Porter, but Matches Fashion and My Theresa also stock them. They’re also available from Gucci online and if you like a good ol’ traditional shop, you can pop into the Gucci boutiques and try them on for yourself. It’s worthwhile noting that the service I’ve experienced in-store is usually more miss than hit. When I paid a visit to the boutique last month to try the Brixtons, I also asked to try the Jordaans in another colour. The sales associate kept insisting that the Jordaan style was an exclusive mens style (even though I walked in wearing my Jordaans…). The lack of knowledge of their own styles was a bit disappointing, particularly because these shoes are iconic.
I hope this post helped any of you guys currently having a Jordaan vs Brixton debate. If you’re able, I’d recommend popping in-store to at least try on the different styles. As always, thanks for stopping by!
P.S. You can read my first impressions of the Gucci Jordaan loafers here.