Building the Perfect Monochrome Wardrobe for Men

Building the Perfect Monochrome Wardrobe for Men

If you are into classic styles, consider a monochrome wardrobe. Monochrome outfits deliver effortless style if you know how to assemble them. There is more to wearing one color from head to toe than you may think. Just like any style trend, following guidelines will only result in more put-together looks, in addition to knowing what works for your body and personal style. Follow our tips below for building the perfect monochrome wardrobe.

Know Your Goal

What do you hope to achieve with the outfits you will wear throughout the year? Are you looking for multiple monochrome outfits for various occasions, from laid-back errand-running days to dressy outfits fit for fine dining with your special dates? Figure out the type of outfits you will need throughout the year before doing any purchasing.

After figuring out the various places you will go, decide on what pieces to work into your outfits. Think about what garment pieces are versatile and can fit into multiple outfit types. For example, you can dress a men’s sweater up and down based on where you are heading. You can layer a blazer over a casual outfit if you are grabbing drinks with your guys or wear it with dress pants and a button-down shirt before heading off to work. Are you more of a low-key guy, or do you like to look polished all day, every day? Your personal style will determine how much you should dedicate to certain pieces rather than others. Purchase base layers, such as button-down shirts and T-shirts, and accent layers based on your needs and personal tastes.

Next, make sure you know your proper measurements and size ranges, such as regular, tall, big and tall, or big. For example, you can purchase big and tall jeans or big and tall dress shirts as opposed to regular sizes for a better fit. If your clothing pieces aren’t a perfect fit, you can always visit your neighborhood tailor.

Experiment With Different Fabrics & Textures

Once you know your measurements and have decided on the types of outfits you want to build, choose the colors you love the most. Consider experimenting with different fabrics and textures when shopping for your outfits to lend depth and various elements to your looks. Some of the most popular fabric types include cotton, silk, cashmere, linen, merino wool, polyester, modal, suede, tweed, velvet, and viscose.

Play With Patterns

You can also play with various patterns (rather than wearing solid apparel pieces from head to toe) to add depth to your outfits. Popular patterns include stripes, windowpane, gingham, herringbone, check, houndstooth, and madras. The patterned piece can be the focus of your outfit or can work as an accent. For example, a check-patterned button-down shirt peeking from underneath a solid sweater is a great accent.

Vary the Color Shades & Tints

It isn’t easy to match the same color throughout an outfit, especially if you purchase clothes from different manufacturers. Even if you have a good eye, designers use different fabrics and blends, stitching, and designs when producing apparel, so there is no way you will match a color exactly (unless you purchase a set). Therefore, it looks better to vary the shades and tints of your color of choice. For example, find different shades of gray when picking out your tops, bottoms, and additional layers.

Layer in Chilly Weather

Monochrome outfits will get through colder weather in style. Find stylish outerwear—leather, track, denim, bomber jackets—when the temperature is a little chilly. For frigid weather, look for a thick coat such as wool, parkas, or down coats.

Switch Things Up With Accents

Cheat a little. Complete your outfit with colorful accent pieces. Wear a statement piece, such as a designer belt, watch, or necklace. Switch things up with socks, hats, gloves, or a scarf with a different color or a cool pattern. Or you could carry a differing briefcase, laptop backpack, or gym bag for a stylish way to hold your essentials.

Finish With Fashionable Footwear

After coming up with a game plan and assembling a monochrome wardrobe based on your style and needs, it is time to think about the type of men’s shoes that will match your outfits. Neutral-colored sneakers are smart choices for these outfits since colors such as black, gray, and white match almost any other color. You can also wear neutral-tone kicks with otherwise dressy outfits, such as ensembles featuring men’s blazers. However, if you want to go bold, consider matching your shoes with more vivid colors (think blue suede shoes with a blue-themed outfit or bold sneakers with outfits centering on that color).

For monochrome outfits that are polished, classic leather loafers and dress shoes will do (again, neutral shades work well with almost anything). For colder weather, chukkas are still trendy, especially those that match brown-themed ensembles.

Monochrome outfits have been stylish for some time. You may think that assembling a monochrome wardrobe is a breeze, but more thought goes into it than you may think. Come up with a game plan to know what types of outfits you will wear throughout the year. Afterward, pick your favorite colors and search for apparel pieces in that color featuring various shades, fabrics, patterns, and textures. Finish with versatile footwear you can match with various outfits and stylish accessories for a pop of color. If you follow these tips, you are that much closer to effortless style.


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