Behind The Design: Your New Favorite Penny Loafer

Sperry Product Designer Kate Sherrer puts a modern spin on a timeless classic.

March 5, 2018
in Design

Patents, metallics, and suedes, oh my! Our Seaport Penny Loafer has already skyrocketed to the top of our best-seller list, making it one of the most popular styles (and your favorite Sperrys) for spring. So, why the penny? To answer this question, and to give you just a little more insight into our creative process, we sat down with Kate Sherrer – the product designer responsible for this must-have shoe.

Sperry Seaport Penny Loafer
Did you have a particular style in mind when you started sketching?
We wanted to stick with the classic penny loafer pattern because it felt so natural to us as a brand. We love it because it’s a nod to heritage styling, and the Sperry brand is proudly rooted in that.

Where we focused our energy was in designing the perfect shape, building the most comfortable shoe we could, and making it sleek. Adding extra memory foam in the arch and heel = amazing comfort! Leather linings are also ideal in shoes you wear barefoot. They absorb moisture and limit foot odor - I greatly appreciate this feature when I travel!

To me, this design is an investment purchase for your wardrobe and one that you’ll love for a long time. All the details are crafted to support that.
What do you love most about the classic penny loafer?
The fashion consumer is craving classic styles, and the penny loafer will always be one. It’s about modernizing the materials, colors, comfort, and how you can work them into your outfit repertoire in a new way.
The colors are perfect for spring. What was your inspiration?
In spring and summer, shoes fall in two categories: the statement and the anchor.

With tops and bottoms in white and neutrals being a palette trend, your shoe can be the “fun” in your outfit. It is easy to play off the colorful accessories in the market now like raffia earrings or multicolored woven handbags.

You may even have a great striped pant or are mixing colors elsewhere, and neutral footwear pull them all together. Gray and blush are two perfect neutrals that do the job!

"This design is an investment purchase for your wardrobe and one that you’ll love for a long time."

Do you have a personal favorite?
I like to wear shoes that people notice! My latest fave is a patent leather of any color.
How do you style your pennies?
I wear them with ankle length skinny jeans that really show them off.

They’re just so versatile - I mix the patent with a leather jacket and t-shirt in cooler weather. As it gets warmer, I will transition to tan or platinum and mix them with a linen or colorful eyelet blouse paired with cropped jeans or chinos.
Where do you envision taking the pennies next? Any cool colors or materials you can hint to?
Since the penny is worn year round, we are exploring some great new beachy color palettes in super soft materials for the summer. We are also incorporating fun trims and surprise material mixes to transition you from summer into fall. Can’t wait for all of them to come out!

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