US men’s magazine Esquire bestowed the fashionable title on Pope Francis in what it admitted was “an unconventional choice”.
Not known as a style trend-setter, Pope Francis was praised by the magazine for his good choice of shoes, a sign of a well-dressed world leader.
“Black shoes and unadorned, simplistic regalia are just an outward acknowledgement of his progressive orthodoxy,” the magazine said, referring to Pope Francis’ decision to break away from his predecessor’s choice of flashy red shoes.
Shoes that look like they have been taken straight off the set of The Wizard of Oz are very much last year and the pontiff appears to be well aware that black is, in fact, the new black.
Pope Benedict XVI was a fan of red shoes. Photo: Tim Sloan/AFP
“True, the opulent jewelry and fur-lined capes of yore have given way to humbler dress, and this break from aesthetic tradition says a lot of the man and what he hopes to achieve while doing his earthly duties,” said Esquire.
Pope Francis has been praised for bringing austerity to the gold-clad Vatican, shunning the pontiff’s grand residence and popemobile in favour of a more low-key lifestyle.
While his tailoring has caught the attention of Esquire, the Pope’s broader approach as leader has caught the attention of other US magazines.
Earlier this month he was named Person of the Year by both Time magazine and The Advocate, a gay rights magazine.