Matching Ties: Colors, Patterns, Dress Code, and More

Dressing well in business doesn’t require spending an arm and a leg on fine designer clothes. What matters is the right fit, complimenting colors, and some basic knowledge on how to match your clothing? This tutorial will teach you all you need to know about matching your neckties.

The Right Fit

Even the nicest suit won’t look right without the proper fit. Therefore, we at recommend that you never buy a suit online unless you have bought from the label before and are familiar with the fit. Also take every suit to a professional tailor after purchasing. When buying a suit, make sure that it fits correctly on your shoulder and chest. The pants should also fit on your waist. Things like sleeve length, inseam, and even the waist can be altered for little cost.

Similar attention should go into your dress shirts. In the US dress shirt sizes are in inches and display the collar size and the sleeve length. Before searching for the right shirt size, consider what shirt fit you are looking for such as slim fit, regular fit, or loose fit. A shirt should never be too tight on the waist. Therefore the cut of the shirt should compliment your body type.

Buying the right sized accessories such as mens ties, cufflinks and pocket squares is much easier since, for the most part, “one size fits all”. Only your necktie needs to match your statue. Most men will be ok wearing a regular length tie that is 57-59 inches in length. Very tall men, men with a larger neck size, as well as those who prefer a larger tie knot, should shop for extra long ties. Most extra long ties are 61-63 inches in length. We at recommend XL sized ties for men whose neck size and height totals more than 90 inches. This means that a man who is 6 foot 2 inches and has an 18 inch neck should wear an extra long tie.

How to Match Different Patterns

Want to match a pin striped suit with checkered dress shirt, striped tie, and a polka dotted handkerchief, but are unsure if it goes together? Combining different patterns and fabric weaves is a great way to add more depth to your outfit. In fact, knowing how to do this will differentiate the sartorialist from the “suit & tie rookie”. Simply keep the following rule in mind and matching patterns will be a piece of cake: Make sure that the patterns are different in size, and preferably, also in shape.

The Right Colors on Suit, Shirt, & Tie

Regardless of the dress code or the occasion, the colors of each clothing item of an outfit should harmonize with each other. In men’s business fashion the largest clothing item, the suit, should be most conservative in color. Thus, colors like dark navy, charcoal, gray, and black are most popular. The second largest clothing item is the dress shirt. Again, colors and patterns should be subtle but it is very acceptable to add a little more spice. Dress shirts like rose, light blue, and light green are very popular during the spring and summer months while darker shades such as gray, blue, maroon, and black are best for the fall and winter season.

Small accessories such as neckties and pocket squares are much more suited to add color to your outfit. Pink, orange, bright greens, bold reds, and blues are very acceptable in business as long as the colors harmonize with the rest of the outfit and with the season of the year. For more information you may also visit our examples on Shirt and Tie Combinations

Matching Ties to the Dress Code

Certain dress codes require specific tie styles and colors. Most formal is the white tie dress code that consists of a white tailcoat jacket, waistcoat, and a white bow tie. Slightly less formal, but much more common, is the black tie dress code. Black tie requires men to wear a tux, white dress shirt, waistcoat or cummerbund, and a solid black bow tie. For more information you may also want to visit our tutorial on mens Black Tie Dress Code. Other occasions where your tie matters are funerals, weddings, certain business settings and job interviews.