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What to wear with tan linen suit

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
I now have an unstructured tan linen suit (thanks to bryce) and I'm wondering what would look good with it.  To that end I have several questions/thoughts that I appreciate to get some feedback on: 1. I don't think a tie could be worn with the suit due to it's unstructured nature but I'm new at this so I could be 100% wrong give or take 100% - thoughts? 2. A white cotton dress shirt almost looked too dressy but as I type this I suspect that's because it wasn't the right type of shirt - I'll try with a button-down or at least one with a pocket and see how that looks.  I was also going to try it with a light blue shirt - thoughts? 3. I was thinking of wearing a white knit "dress" T (as opposed to just a cotton T shirt).  I always think this is too Don Johnson looking but my soon to be wife thinks that the look is just fine - what do you folks think? 4. Do you think it would look entirely ridiculous to put a pocket square with a knit and the suit?  If not what colours and material do you think would be most suitable? I know that's a lot of questions - thanks in advance for your input.
post #2 of 13
You can wear a tie with it, in all likelihood. It's not going to be a crisp "board room" look, but fine for most purposes. That is, if you work in an envirnment that is not too stuffy for a linen suit in the first place. As to shirts, I would avoid white, which is too severe. Blue is better. Pink is good. A maroon stripe is nice. Basically, anything with some color.
post #3 of 13
I like yellow shirts with tan linen or cotton. However, more so than most other combinations, your complexion is very important for it to work right--you could end up looking really washed out. This won't happen with a blue shirt. Ties and pocket squares are fine with this, just nothing too formal.
post #4 of 13
I wouldn't wear a tee-shirt (even though I liked "Miami Vice") but would wear a polo shirt, even in a bright color. I wouldn't use a shiny silk or white linen pocket square with this. Any leather worn with this shouldn't be very formal-loafers, even a web belt and not shiny leather. I have an unconstructed cashmere blazer that I think of as the equivalent to a cardigan-suit may be considered somewhat more formal.
post #5 of 13
I myself wouldn't mind wearing white shirt with tan linen suit, provided it is also a linen or at least a linen/cotton-blend shirt. A starchy white shirt would look off inside a linen suit, whatever colour it is. You can wearing a linen tie or a silk knit tie, or better yet, a neck scarf or ascot.
post #6 of 13
Texture and feel are a key here. A tan linen suit could be the epitome of casual elegance. Anything starchy, stiff or heavy will look out of place. I like the idea of linen shirts and ties, and a colorful polo could look great. A voile shirt would be terrific. The "dress t-shirt" will, IMHO, always look sloppy under a suit. Shirts with collars are much better.
post #7 of 13
Quote:
1. I don't think a tie could be worn with the suit due to it's unstructured nature but I'm new at this so I could be 100% wrong give or take 100% - thoughts?
You can wear a tie, definitely; people do it all the time. However the nature of a linen suit is that it's casual, so in most cases it doesn't call for a tie.
Quote:
2. A white cotton dress shirt almost looked too dressy but as I type this I suspect that's because it wasn't the right type of shirt - I'll try with a button-down or at least one with a pocket and see how that looks. I was also going to try it with a light blue shirt - thoughts?
Try wearing a light white/lavender stipe, or a white/light green stripe shirt with it to add some excitement. A plain white dress shirt always works with a tan, linen suit; it's a classic look. Don't worry about a pocket or BD collar; any white shirt will do.
Quote:
3. I was thinking of wearing a white knit "dress" T (as opposed to just a cotton T shirt). I always think this is too Don Johnson looking but my soon to be wife thinks that the look is just fine - what do you folks think?
If you do that, opt for a v-neck one instead of a crewneck. It will make the look more updated.
Quote:
4. Do you think it would look entirely ridiculous to put a pocket square with a knit and the suit? If not what colours and material do you think would be most suitable?
Nope, wear a pocket square by all means. However don't match it to the shirt or tie. Since the suit is tan, add some color with the pocket square. Don't do a linen PS, get a silk one. In general don't worry about the wrinkles. Finely pressed linen suits are for nerds. Buy a pair of tan or brown cordovan shoes to go with the suit, or a pair of driving mocs. Don't wear black captoes or again you'll be entering nerdiness.
post #8 of 13
Heron: For what do you plan to wear said suit? Work? Resortwear? Your response would yield two very different answers. Are you talking about "natural" linen, which is actually a weave of cream & taupe threads? Or is it actually "tan", like saddle leather? This would also make a difference. I look forward to your response, as "outfit coordination" is among my favorite things in the world to do. Just ask my brother & dad, as well as SCORES of ex-beaus, colleagues and wardrobe consulting vict- I mean, clients, over the years. In general, taupe & tan are considered "neutral" by most accounts. Again, in general, it will look fine with white, ecru, blue, pink, navy and (for a more casual look) even black.
post #9 of 13
What's with this 'Scores' of ex boyfriends crap? Oh, back to the topic at hand... Tie would need to be informal IMHO, an ornate silk tie would be too formal whereas one of linen would work. Hey look, I am going to disagree with Manton :-) ...I think a white shirt is fine but again, the casual nature of the suit demands a less formal shirt. IMHO a crisp, heavy Irish linen shirt in white sans tie with a good tan and natural linen suit is one of the best looks going. Otherwise I agree with Manton on blue and pink. For pocket square I'd also go with a linen one, there are nice ones these days with color just at the edge that might compliment the shirt you choose. I love linen, have already broken mine out now that we're in the 70s and the trees are blooming. Wear it confidently/
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Heron: For what do you plan to wear said suit?  Work? Resortwear? Your response would yield two very different answers.  Are you talking about "natural" linen, which is actually a weave of cream & taupe threads? Or is it actually "tan", like saddle leather?  This would also make a difference.   I look forward to your response, as "outfit coordination" is among my favorite things in the world to do. Just ask my brother & dad, as well as SCORES of ex-beaus, colleagues and wardrobe consulting vict- I mean, clients, over the years. In general, taupe & tan are considered "neutral" by most accounts.  Again, in general, it will look fine with white, ecru, blue, pink, navy and (for a more casual look) even black.
The how do I plan to wear question has a couple of answers, and admittedly it was a bit of a loaded question on my part as I had more than one use in mind: 1. I was going to wear it as Resortwear, more specifically as part of a beach wedding (my own BTW). My fiance and I have agreed that we are keeping it very casual and a tie is out which is fine by me but I'm really tempted to add just a bit of colour with the pocket square. 2. I'm considering wearing it to the office in July and August 3. I plan on wearing the jacket with jeans as well. The colour is more like "wheat" than tan which is the "natural" colour you refer to - the error of my ways was pointed out by my fiance. My answer and defense is that as a guy with limited experience I currently only know of 5 colours along with black and white but I'm willing to learn The immediate concern is the wedding which is coming up in a little over a month on Grand Cayman. My fiance is pushing pretty hard for the dress tee look. I went out yesterday and picked up a selection of shirts to try with the jacket. The dress tee's included a soft orange, a soft almost lime green and a soft yellow. The orange and lime looked pretty good but the yellow was too washed out looking. I had already decided to return the yellow and try black. I also picked up 2 linen shirts - white and sage green. The white is a bit too see through requiring a shirt under it but the sage green didn't look bad at all. I/we are split on the orange or green tee (crew neck BTW). I'll likely take both with a couple of pocket squares and decide while on island - after getting a tan. Thanks to all that have replied and please continue to wade in.
post #11 of 13
Heron - I just picked up a similar suit myself. For what you are doing, i.e. beach wedding, I think the dress tee or knit crew neck would be just fine. I am thinking of wearing mine with a pink or pale blue tee - although I also think it would work with white or navy (which I already have). Next question is what about footwear. I just picked up a pair of leather flip flops at American Eagle and actually think they would look pretty good with my new linen suit - especially if I were to be standing on a beach getting married, so you might want to consider that option. Hope this helps, Bradford
post #12 of 13
Thread Starter 
I just ordered these mocs for wearing the day of the "event". I thought they'd look all right without socks. Means avoiding concerns about pedicures etc. that accompany open toed sandals or flip flops. They aren't fancy but they should do the job reasonably well and they didn't break the bank either.
post #13 of 13
Quote:
I just ordered   these mocs for wearing the day of the "event".  I thought they'd look all right without socks.  Means avoiding concerns about pedicures etc. that accompany open toed sandals or flip flops. They aren't fancy but they should do the job reasonably well and they didn't break the bank either.
Those should work - and you're right they'll look good w/o socks. I have a similar pair - also from J&M and wear them all the time in the summer. Bradford
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