If you've got already got a pair of high quality Ralph Lauren loafers, or are planning on purchasing a pair for your spring wardrobe, you're probably wondering what those "rules" are. Over the last few years, the preppy look has come back into style for both men and women. Along with this resurgence in preppy fashion, there has been a renewed appreciation of that classic example of preppy footwear: the loafer. As with any other specific type of footwear, there are fashion "rules" regarding which tops and bottoms match best with women's loafers. Essentially, you'll want to let an overall preppy style aesthetic be your guide when pairing clothing with your loafers. Given that everything in the Ralph Lauren oeuvre is preppy-inspired, mixing and matching will likely prove to be a cinch.
One rule of thumb with loafers is that they are generally not paired with regular fit, light-colored jeans. If your intent is to wear your Ralph Lauren loafers with denim jeans, opt for skinny fit jeans in darker colors. Two examples of darker, skinny fit jeans which would pair well with Ralph Lauren loafers are the Ralph Lauren Blue Label Skinny Black Wash Jean ($198), or the Ralph Lauren Denim & Supply Stretch Skinny Afton Jean ($79.50). If denim isn't your thing, you'll still want to opt for slim-fitting pants, but can pass on the jeans and opt for a tailored-looking casual dress pant, such as the Ralph Lauren Black Label Vivette Stretch Wool Pant ($575).
You can either pair your Ralph Lauren loafers with a boyfriend blazer for an artsy, studious look, or you can go with a roomy cardigan or ruffled blouse. If you decide to pair your loafers with a boyfriend blazer, such as the Ralph Lauren Blue Label Polo Custom Blazer ($598), a good way to take that artsy, slightly androgynous look one step further is to accessorize it with a newsboy cap and/or a messenger bag. If you decide to go with a more feminine style approach, pairing your loafers with something like the Ralph Lauren Blue Label Dolman Ruffle Cardigan ($598) or the Ralph Lauren Blue Label Mackenzie Georgette Blouse ($345), keep the jewelry and other accessories to a minimum. With the feminine loafer ensemble, you'll want the femininity to come mostly if not entirely through the clothing, so jewelry should be limited to a bracelet or necklace, and perhaps a small purse or tote bag.
Lastly, when creating an ensemble around your Ralph Lauren loafers this Spring, you'll want to take into consideration what you shouldn't be wearing with your outfit. Specifically, socks are generally not paired with loafers, as the pairing of the two can look unfashionably mismatched. If not wearing socks is a concern, either because of perspiration/hygiene issues or because of a tendency to blister easily, opt for discreet low cut socks that can protect your feet from becoming sweaty and uncomfortable without being seen.