Old Fashioned Fashion: Spats

Over the weekend, I scored myself a pair of vintage spats for $6. Now, one thing you should know about Captain Dapper is that I love me some old fashioned fashion! From pork pie hats to spats, I've always been fascinated by clothing and accessories that were once de rigeuer but are no longer prominent. So the second I saw the spats languishing on a shelf at the antique mall, I had to make them mine.

If you're not familiar with spats, let me educate you. Spats is actually short for spatterdashes. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, spats were a piece of practical footwear. Worn mainly by men, spats would be worn over the shoe to protect shoes and socks from rain, mud and (presumably) all the horseshit that littered the streets back then.

You probably know spats from 1920's gangster lore. Or maybe you've seen them on Scrooge McDuck or Rich Uncle Pennybags, the iconic, rich old man from the Monopoly game. Although spats were worn by most men back in the day, they have since become shorthand for wealth in popular culture.

The vintage spats I purchased over the weekend are light gray wool felt, which was the standard material used for the footwear accessory. They button up one side and buckle on the bottom of the shoe by the heel. The spats seem to be one size fits all - that is, they fit on my size 9 boots, as well as The Mister's size 8 shoes.

So what will I do with my new spats? I'll wear them of course! And I'm not talking about a costume for some roaring 20's theme party. (Side note: Can we all admit that the roaring 20's party has been a bit overdone? Please?) I'm planning to work the spats into my fashion rotation. I think they look pretty snazzy with my brown boots.

Images: Jason Loper


  1. Yep, they're snazzy! And your boots are perfect with them. They seem to be in great shape - fun find. I'm not completely convinced of the skinny pants though. ;)

  2. Learn something new every day! Splatterdash... cool!