Why is it so hard to go into your dresser and pick out the right thing the first time? For many men, it comes down to a single challenge: color coordination. Let’s clear up the confusion with some easy tips on how to color coordinate your clothes.
The Principles of Color Coordination
It’s easy to match one color with another, but when it comes to two different colors that “complement” each other, it can be difficult to figure out what truly works. Fortunately, there are some tried-and-true formulas you can use to properly coordinate an outfit:
- Build on a solid foundation. Colors like gray, khaki, and white tend to go well with anything. That means that if you want to get started with color coordination, you’ll have no trouble matching most colors to these. Match just about any color of dress shirt with Super 100’s Gabardine in Charcoal, for example, and you likely won’t steer wrong.
- Pay attention to the shoes. So much of the color coordination of the outfit comes down to this foundation: do the shoes make sense? Avoid wearing brown clothes and black shoes, and vice versa. Otherwise, brown shoes will tend to match well with most colors—gray suits, navy casual shirts, and everything in between.
- Familiarize yourself with common matches that work. Navy and gray. Blue and brown. Light blue and mustard. Light gray and red. Stick to a few formulas and you can mix up your outfit without much problem, even if you never experiment with new color matching schemes yourself.
How to Coordinate with Unfamiliar Palettes
What if you want to get a little bolder with your choices? There are ways to give yourself a frame of reference without relying on the same old color coordination formulas. You can use tools like Adobe’s Color Palette Creator to tinker with your outfits. Here are a few tips for using it effectively:
- For bold color choices, choose “complementary” colors. Swing the icon around the color palette and you’ll notice that the complementary colors are automatically filled in for you. You’ll find interesting choices that match well together while on the opposite ends of the color spectrum.
- If you want something more subtle, choose “compound” colors. A compound color palette gives you similar choices to complementary colors but with more muted options. Try to find the clothes most akin to these in your wardrobe, and you shouldn’t have any problems mixing and matching, even if you haven’t considered wearing these colors together before.
You’ve Got This
Make a mental note of the clothes you already have in your wardrobe and which colors work best with them. You may find that you’re ready for some of these matches. For others, you may need to seek out new clothes for the perfect match. If that’s the case, browse through the Berle Casual Pants Collection to find a wide range of colors in great styles that can support hundreds of outfit choices!