Sunday, December 11, 2011

Good Suit Color Combinations

When you wear a suit, there are lots of things that other people will notice about it: the cut, the number of buttons, the length of the jacket, the drape of the pants... But before anyone notices any of these things, the very first thing they will notice is the color of your suit. Color relays a strong and powerful message, and therefore the color combinations you select with a suit should be carefully considered.

Charcoal Gray:

Charcoal gray is a great suit color to select if you need a "foundation" suit, meaning one good suit that you plan to wear to formal events such as weddings and funerals. You pretty much can't go wrong with gray-- it is appropriate for any occasion. One of the things that makes gray such a good choice is that, depending on the shade, it can be paired with either black or brown accessories. For a formal and serious look, pair a gray suit with a white button down shirt and a gray tie, along with brown shoes and a brown belt. To change it up a little bit, wear a gray suit with a black button down shirt and a gray (the same shade of gray as your suit) tie, black shoes and a black belt. Or, a black and blue diagonally striped tie with black accessories. Want some more color? Try a pink shirt and a maroon paisley tie. Or a white shirt and an orange tie. See the point here? A charcoal gray suit is entirely versatile and can be paired with almost anything. There is scarcely a way that you can go wrong, as long as your clothing items are well tailored and fitted, of course.


Navy is considered to be another "foundation" suit color, primarily because of its commonality. Again, there are not really any situations for which a navy suit would be deemed inappropriate. It is a very traditional and elegant choice. So to play off of navy's elegance, select shirts and ties in colors that are classic as well. Yellow and brown are excellent pairings with navy, as are other shades of blue. For example, try a light blue button down shirt with a brown tie. To modernize the look, opt for a skinny tie and experiment with one of the slimmer tie knots. For an edgier twist, try combining pink with your navy suit. Pink is automatically an attention-getter. Try it by combining a pink patterned tie, such as a pink foulard or striped tie, with your navy suit and a blue and white striped button down shirt. For an attention-getting look that is not quite as daring as pink, opt for a silver or purple tie. For a look that says "take me seriously" and is more authoritative, go for a white button down and a red tie.


Black is considered to be the most serious and authoritative of suits. However, if you wish to downplay the seriousness of black, look for a black suit with a pinstripe. A combination that I am fond of for evening holiday parties is a black pin stripe suit with a black shirt and a red tie. For a solid black suit and a white button down shirt, unless you want to appear more serious, select a tie with a pattern. The color is really up to you. Red, orange, yellow, and gold are somewhat traditional choices for a black suit. Pink, green, and turquoise are a little more modern. There is a strong debate about brown and black working together, so it's up to you. If you go with pairing it together, it's best to use one of the colors in a pattern. For example, a tie with black, gold and brown stripes is a sharp choice for a black suit. One good thing to keep in mind with black suits is that they are most commonly made of wool, which is a heavy fabric. Therefore, any shirt with too much sheen, or that is lightweight, will clash somewhat with the weight of the suit. Pick good, sturdy and heavyweight cotton shirts to go with your black suit. But again, don't be afraid to pair black with colors.

Author: Michael Taylor is a Marketing Manager at TIE SNUG. TIE SNUG eliminates continuous adjusting and makes wearing a tie more comfortable. Knowing the current tie styles is an important step when deciding what to wear to an interview. Feel confident that you look your best with TIE SNUG. For more information or to make a purchase, please visit

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