Colour is meant to be embraced. With monotone minimalism sucking the vibrancy out men’s style in recent years, colour is returning to fashion’s cheeks – finally.
Coordinating colours, like any act of fashion experimentation, is tricky. But it sets the stylish gent apart from the all-black fashion boy. The key is using tried and tested combinations that work any season, any time.
Embracing different shades of the rainbow (though not all at once), here are five foolproof colour combinations to rock right now with ease and class.
#1 Black & White
Black and white – separately – are deemed the rock of men’s fashion. And together, they are unshakeable. Pushed on by the athletic accent in fashion today, monochrome has never been so prominent, especially in casual and street wear.
Black should be your base colour, looking pitch perfect too – either as jersey cotton sweatpants (cuffed at the ankle) or waxed denim for a super sleek jean. Then take a white tee (longline to play on proportions just like Justin Bieber) and a leather perfecto or neoprene matte black jacket, to jog out the athleisure look.
To sex things up, take a thick cotton blazer and mandarin collared shirt, basing out with tailored pleat trousers on flat-front chinos, adding stark white sneakers to define all your black-and-white ensembles.
#2 Maroon & Navy
Don’t be put off by maroon’s dirtiness. As the colour of the season, the brown-y purple teams perfectly with navy, replacing traditional red for a two-coloured ensemble that does away with any American flag references – or British royals.
For autumn, pull out your navy chinos or raw denim jeans (in a trouser-slim fit) and top the pants with a perfect fit v-neck sweater; a light cotton shirt underneath – cuff and unbuttoned collar neatly exposed.
Keeping the monarchy content, summer time separates sees burgundy lighten (just a little) forming a quasi-royal red under a brass buttoned double-breasted jacket with a mod paisley tie and Clubmaster sunnies.
The final touch? Dark brown leather shoes – a softer alternative to black.
While contrasting colour combinations are very much on-trend for the new season, tonal ensembles are a softer route to eye-catching style. For that, choose grey – collating a fluid wave of the smoky hue, particularly for smart tailored looks,
With a full-piece suit, select a herringbone fabric in mid-grey, placing the perfect fit jacket over a lighter grey marl tee. The speckled marl won’t take away from the ruggedness of the wool, adding white sneakers to complement the casual attitude shirt.
For a more sophisticated mood, take a mini-check blazer (with a more structured shoulder) in light grey and team the jacket with charcoal pants – pleated or flat-front depending on your style. A dark grey shirt is great for nights or a smokey tee for summertime ease. Tip: Keep the accessories black to add points of strength in the outfit – be it, watch band, belt, sunglasses or shoes.
#4 White & Khaki
White is a symbol of warmer weather. And with khaki, the combination is a great option for both cooler and hotter climates – the earthy hue a more down-played colour than pastel and far from the nautical references of navy.
Keeping it comfortably sharp, team a khaki blazer in cotton or heavy linen or a relaxed fit white t-shirt and and slim with trousers. Then, accentuate the organic with a thin leather belt in brown and tassel loafers in your favourite shade of chocolate – milk or dark.
Meanwhile, the best fashion item has to be the trench coat. So if you’re stuck for khaki, pull out the iconic jacket and lighten it with a white top – button up, roll neck, or tee. Take your pick.
#5 Blue & Green
“Blue and green should not be seen…” Not. While the atlas colours are said to be forbidden in the same space, the new season has other ideas.
For summer, think sky blues and sea greens, paired in bold colour blocks from the top the bottoms – for instance, cotton button shirting in muted emerald and dusty navy, basing the blue with camel suede shoes or (again) white sneakers.
For cooler weather layering, bring some print into the mix, working with a plaid or Breton stripe shirt (and optional navy undershirt) under a military shacket in khaki green – perfect for sundown evenings. Rich tan brogues – sans socks, ramping up the dishevelled layered styling.
Sticking to monotone ensembles is safe and will only get you so far. Sure they have their place, but day after day you fall into the trap of wearing a uniform – a boring approach to style.
When colour blocking – with the aforementioned combos – break up the hues with leather belts, finely printed accessories (ties and pocket squares) and neutral coloured shoes. Always collate using favourite pieces.
And you’ll be well on your way to colouring your world – whatever the season.