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Suit-shirt-tie combinations

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

I've been flipping through style books recently for a basic chart/list of suit-shirt-tie combinations but haven't been able to find a single comprehensive list. I mainly wear wear navy, navy pinstripe, charcoal, and charcoal pinstripe suits with dark brown shoes. My choices are generally traditional, but only because I'm not knowledgeable enough to toe the line with combinations that would make me stand out.

For example, I often wear white, white striped, or light blue shirts with my navy suits and white, white striped or plaid with my charcoal suits. When I want to get crazy, I'll wear a pink shirt with a suit; but I never wear a tie with it because I'm not sure exactly what to color would work well with that combination.

I know comprehensive list would be too extensive. A few, out-of-the-ordinary combinations for a navy and a charcoal suit would be great. Ideas for colors in addition to pink would be appreciated. I'm sick of my bland style!
post #2 of 7
Spend a few days perusing the What Are You Wearing Right Now thread pinned above.
post #3 of 7
Years ago Manton posted a guide from the 1930s magazine Apparel Arts. Long story short it suggested one dark color, one medium value color, and one light color. All your shirts are light (i hope) and all your suits are dark (why?) so think medium tie. The color part is easy. Wear what you like. Sounds like you don't like pink, maybe you should give it up. Buy some medium blues - in between sky and navy - to wear with your dark suits. And why not get a medium gray suit so you can wear some navy or dark burgundy ties.

AA had some advice about pattern matching too. IIRC they suggested that symmetrical (evenly spaced) pinstripes take symmetrical stripes well, if the scale is different enough to contrast. Maybe try a wide stripe tie with your dark striped suits in colors that are not too dark or light.
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
No, actually I like the pink. I just feel like I'm always wearing the same suit combinations. My goal is to spruce them up a bit by adding some color, pink included. My suits are dark because I didn't have too much money to spend and wanted to get a good foundation - navy and charcoal being the most versatile.

Thanks for the advice!
post #5 of 7
I'd suggest going for light pink, lavender (very useful), and maybe yellow depending on your complexion. You can also play with patterns such as a self pattern (herringbone, twill, etc) or subtly/small ginghams and houndstooths. it doesn't have to just be stripes.

as for tie colors, generally something like a grey or navy polk dot in a different scale to the shirt or suit pattern is quite useful. I find a plain dark brown tie and maroon tie very versatile. Even a dark purple. otherwise a light grey is a little harder to match but looks great when you can. besides just color, you can play with pattern as suggested above, or also texture. instead of silk ties, try adding a wool or cashmere style one. Suits give the silhouette, shirts are the canvas, and ties are the personality.
post #6 of 7
There is a small chart with color combination suggestions here:
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
I appreciate everyone's help. I definitely have some new material to work with.
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