Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Always on the look out for good fashion advice, I find that Gear Patrol is a great fashion resource for men. There I found this article in a 30 day series; How to be a Better Man in 30 Days.

Starting with...

First, lets get to know some of the widely available men’s shirt patterns. A great starting point for any man.

A. Single Color
B. Striped, Fine Striped
C. Bengal Striped
D. Grid, Windowpane
E. Gingham Check
F. Glen-Plaid (a.k.a. Prince of Wales Check)
G. Woven

Now for the Simple Guide to Matching Shirts and Ties

Single Color - Harmonious, solid color dress shirt and tie combinations are found by picking colors of the same family and relation. Choose color families that have the same base colors (red, blue or yellow). This does not mean different shades of the same color (different hues of blue), but rather a color relation that carries through both the shirt and tie.

Striped, Fine Striped - Stick with simple ties. Yes, you can pair a striped tie along with a striped shirt, but they cannot be similar in stripe size. A textured tie works well, especially in a bold solid color. Make sure that you carry one color from your tie to your shirt or suit. It goes without saying that you should avoid a pinstriped suit when wearing a striped shirt/striped tie combo.

Bengal Striped - Bengal stripes are a robust pattern. Your tie should play back-up guitar here with a low profile repeating pattern. This editor’s personal take is to avoid dotted patterns.

Checkered and Gingham Check - When wearing checkered shirts you need to pay attention to the pattern. Keep the sizes different, even if the patterns on both are small or large. Again, tie the color back to another element of your outfit: shirt, suit, etc. Gingham checks are typically of lighter hue so pairing it with a dark tie (vert basic patterns work here) is your best choice.

Glen-Plaid (a.k.a. Prince of Wales Check) - Because Glen-Plaid is a bold pattern (on both suits and shirts), your best bet is to stick with a thick striped tie (varsity, gordian, club, gable). The axiom that a bold pattern is best offset with a subtle one does not apply. Glen-plaid requires a bold tie to pair properly, yet the entire effect can still be conservative.

Grid, Windowpane - One of the most effective shirt and tie combinations when paired properly. First, make sure a color matches between your and shirt and tie. Second: make sure that tie is patterned. You can go a little bolder on the pattern, but make sure you feel comfortable pulling it off. If it looks ostentatious to you in the privacy of your own home, it will look 10x so in public.

Woven - Woven dress shirts are an interesting beast because it’s their weave that give its pattern versus a strict design. If your woven shirt is light, then pair it with a darker tie with a similar stripe. If your dress shirt is very dark and you want to pair it with a light tie then you should reconsider today’s wardrobe. That is, unless you really miss the 1990’s.

Now that you have you dress shirts and ties mapped out, add the essential accessory - Cufflinks!

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