Archive for October, 2013

Pair It and Wear It Too!

October 8th, 2013 Comments off

“What are the rules for pairing shirts and ties? I always feel like I’m going to make a mistake and look bad at work” – TPM, Manhattan 

Building on last month’s entry of pairing shirts and ties of different scales, this month we’re going to focus on highlighting different colors in a shirt so you get more use from the same shirt. We will use shirts with a small pattern and a tie with a larger pattern or a solid color. All the information here will apply to striped shirts.
Helpful hint: DON’T worry if the colors aren’t an exact match. They should be close, but don’t stress out about it. The human eye adjusts to see the colors as the same.
Take a look at some of the examples below:
EXAMPLE 1:  This shirt has a dominant burgundy check with a grey check underneath. The solid burgundy tie highlights the burgundy check (light shirt and dark tie).
EXAMPLE 2: Same shirt as above, but paired with a navy tie that has a similar (but not exact) burgundy color stripe. The 2 burgundy colors in the shirt and tie make this pair a good match.  The thick navy stripe is a nice offset to the small check pattern and once again, tie is dark and the shirt is light.
EXAMPLE 3: A light red check shirt paired with a burgundy tie. Light red and burgundy are both shades of the color red. Two shades of the same color are a good match. 

This also applies to shades of blue and purple/lavender.   Once again, light patterned shirt and a solid, dark tie. 
EXAMPLE 4: This shirt has both a blue check and a pink check. The dark navy blue tie highlights the light blue in the shirt.  Also, the scale of the stripe in the tie is larger than the small check, making this a good match.  Again, light shirt and dark tie (we are emphasizing this point here.)
EXAMPLE 5: Same shirt as above, but paired with a pink tie. The pink in the shirt is highlighted. The large pattern tie and small pattern shirt make this a good match.  
EXAMPLE 6: STOP! TOO MUCH! – This is an example of a good color match, but the pair is too graphic and not appropriate for work. The 2 patterns don’t create an elegant match even though the colors are paired nicely.  It is too “busy.”

Let’s review our tips again. 

1. SCALE: Shirt or tie should have a larger pattern.  Easy route is to pair a small patterned shirt with a larger scale tie.

2. Light Shirt and Dark Tie: Generally, you should opt for light colored dress shirts and pair them with dark ties.

3. Highlighting a Shirt Color: Use the tie color to match with one of the colors from the shirt.
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