Etiquette Hell

General Etiquette => Life...in general => Topic started by: PurpleFrog on August 20, 2013, 12:23:54 AM

Title: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: PurpleFrog on August 20, 2013, 12:23:54 AM
In order to stop me from beating my husband with a pair of jeans I'm throwing myself on the mercy of EHell.

Can anyone recommend a good guide on what clothing is appropriate for an occasion/event. My DH seems to be getting less and less able to judge which type of clothing is the correct choice, and has now seemingly forgotten that there is anything beween Jeans and and a suit. He also struggles to define office clothing as opposed to outside work type clothing. I'm pretty sure when we met he was less clueless and is just getting dumber.

The latest example is thatI recently celebrated a milestone birthday, and we are going away together overnight. Plans include dinner at a very nice restraunt. DH decides to pack black jeans as 'blue jeans wouldn't be OK'. This is a very upscale restraunt, jeans are not OK full stop. Second choice, his black trousers he uses for work (think suit type) :/ it seems in his world these are the only two options in black as his next question is; 'Should I buy cream ones then?'. Arrgh (not that cream would be an issue, Just the idea that thé Could not thé style was the issue)

Of course he only spring these things on me after getting ready/packing/at 11pm on a sunday night when everything is shut. He's also the first to criticize others fir wearing somthing inappropriate (ime the guest who rocked up to our wedding in blue jeans and a tshirt) I'm sick of chasing round after him to check he owns/will be wearing somthing suitable, while he promplynpurges the information before the next event.

Basically I want a 'clothing types or dummies' guide. Or I shall just lock him in a cupboard.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Bethalize on August 20, 2013, 03:52:09 AM
I feel your pain! Luckily, DH has agreed to my minimum requirements, which is to have a dark suit with the choice of a coloured or white shirt and a suitable tie, plus sports coats in both black and brown that may or may not be worn with jeans, plus a pair of trousers that are not jeans. He also understands the difference between "casual" clothes i.e. not formal clothes, and "leisure clothes" i.e. stuff he wears in his leisure time.

http://askandyaboutclothes.com/clothing/style-tips/cracking-the-dress-code
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: bopper on August 20, 2013, 09:05:56 AM
Go shopping with him and help him pick out some clothing that is between jeans and a suit.
When you go somewhere, tell him "Why don't you bring those khaki's and your sport coat.  That would look very sharp."
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 20, 2013, 09:15:05 AM
One word of advice for menswear - please stay away from black in general. Black is almost never the correct/best color to wear to most events. Black suits are generally not worn in the business world in most places (US, Canada, UK, Continental Europe). Dark gray and navy are preferable and more versatile. I suppose you can get away with a black suit at an evening event.

Also, try to avoid black pants worn alone or with a sport jacket. Black is generally a formal color, and black pants on their own are part of a rather casual outfit. Mid gray and tan are better choices. Black sport coats aren't great for the same reasons. Navy is better.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: MrTango on August 20, 2013, 09:21:40 AM
I'm a guy that used to struggle with the being over- or under-dressed, but I've figured out a pretty easy system:

1) Casual (around the house, fishing, out running errands): Jeans or Khaki cargo-pants with t-shirt or polo shirt.
2) A bit less casual (Dinner with the in-laws, the evening service at my church, work): Black or Khaki slacks (like Dockers), polo shirt or casual sweater.
3) Somewhat formal (morning service at my church, clients at work): Black slacks or the pants from my suit (no suspenders), shirt & tie (I have a half dozen shirts and about 10 different ties).  No jacket unless it's cold out.
4) Formal: Suit pants with suspenders, Shirt & Tie, Jacket.

I disagree with Msulinski about black.  A black suit paired with shirts and ties in a variety of colors can be very flexible and appropriate for a wide variety of situations and environments.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 20, 2013, 09:34:11 AM
Regarding black, I'm not sure where you live, but in the US, almost no one wears black suits to work. They are also not very versatile, especially compared to navy or charcoal. Black is very severe, looks bad in daylight, and can wash out many complexions.

It also limits the choices of shirts. You pretty much have white and maybe light blue. A lot of other colors don't look great with black. Same with ties. Would you wear a brown tie with a black suit? Charcoal and navy dial down the severity and allow for more color combinations that look good.

With black pants or a suit, you have one option for shoes: black. Brown shoes with black pants looks terrible.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: WillyNilly on August 20, 2013, 09:42:03 AM
Sounds like your DH is in need of slacks - not jeans or cargos, but not suit pants, slacks are somewhere in between. They are appropriate for "summer Fridays" at work, dinners out, holidays/church occasions, etc. Plug mens slacks into google and hit "images" and show your husband and say "this!" (https://www.google.com/search?q=mens+slacks&client=Flamingvixen-a&hs=yXo&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=on4TUsz4FIbUyQGXxYG4Bg&ved=0CAkQ_AUoAQ&biw=1366&bih=664)

Personally I used to hate the word "slacks" it sounded so old fashioned but as I've aged I have come to realize its awesome to have a specific word to be able to use with men like my husband to describe what to wear, because unlike with girlfriends saying "you know, nice pants" didn't ever garner the appropriate reaction on his part.

Mens slacks can be bought at department stores (JC Penny, Macy's, Sears, etc) or brand specific places like Gap, Express, Ralph Lauren. One can probably find them at Target, but there they might be styled a bit more casually, closer to cargos, so just beware. Sometimes they can even be found at warehouse stores like BJs or Costco.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Zizi-K on August 20, 2013, 09:48:43 AM
Regarding black, I'm not sure where you live, but in the US, almost no one wears black suits to work. They are also not very versatile, especially compared to navy or charcoal. Black is very severe, looks bad in daylight, and can wash out many complexions.

It also limits the choices of shirts. You pretty much have white and maybe light blue. A lot of other colors don't look great with black. Same with ties. Would you wear a brown tie with a black suit? Charcoal and navy dial down the severity and allow for more color combinations that look good.

With black pants or a suit, you have one option for shoes: black. Brown shoes with black pants looks terrible.

Um, I live in the US and in my (academic/design) circles, I rarely see anything but black. The US is a big country - be careful about making such sweeping generalizations.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: daisy1679 on August 20, 2013, 10:25:31 AM
Regarding black, I'm not sure where you live, but in the US, almost no one wears black suits to work. They are also not very versatile, especially compared to navy or charcoal. Black is very severe, looks bad in daylight, and can wash out many complexions.

It also limits the choices of shirts. You pretty much have white and maybe light blue. A lot of other colors don't look great with black. Same with ties. Would you wear a brown tie with a black suit? Charcoal and navy dial down the severity and allow for more color combinations that look good.

With black pants or a suit, you have one option for shoes: black. Brown shoes with black pants looks terrible.

Um, I live in the US and in my (academic/design) circles, I rarely see anything but black. The US is a big country - be careful about making such sweeping generalizations.

I live in the US too, and black seems to be the most popular suit color I've seen around here. As far as what colors to wear with it, I find black far more versatile (and shades of black, like charcoal). I never wear navy because almost nothing looks good with it but white.

As far as the OP goes, a pair of khakis and a pair of black dress pants can go a long way for a man when paired with a nice collared shirt. Khakis for an earlier event, black for a night one. It's pretty much the standard dress uniform among all the men I know.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Twirly on August 20, 2013, 10:30:06 AM
Regarding black, I'm not sure where you live, but in the US, almost no one wears black suits to work. They are also not very versatile, especially compared to navy or charcoal. Black is very severe, looks bad in daylight, and can wash out many complexions.

It also limits the choices of shirts. You pretty much have white and maybe light blue. A lot of other colors don't look great with black. Same with ties. Would you wear a brown tie with a black suit? Charcoal and navy dial down the severity and allow for more color combinations that look good.

With black pants or a suit, you have one option for shoes: black. Brown shoes with black pants looks terrible.

That's so interesting! Black is a regular if not default color for slacks and suits in every office I've ever worked in in San Francisco and Philadelphia.  It's so funny how we can have such different experiences in the same country.

I totally disagree about only white or blue looking good with black pants, I think every color but brown works really well. And actually that combo can even look really smart and modern if done correctly, I've seen it quite a few times. My husband wears black pants to work almost exclusively, with a variety of colorful shirts and ties. Plus he only owns black shoes so that is never a concern!
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 20, 2013, 10:49:22 AM
To clarify, I am speaking from a menswear perspective, and it may have nothing to do with what women wear. I mentioned it because this thread is about what a man should wear in various environments. I am trying to provide some guidance about what looks good. I truly don't mean any offense by this, but I think a man can only look so good when he is dressed by his wife/girlfriend/mother.

OP, I would urge you to seek men's style advice outside of this forum, as you are not likely to get any adivce from well-dressed men. The previously-mentioend askandyaboutclothes.com and styleforum.net are good places to go.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: MrTango on August 20, 2013, 11:46:52 AM
I am trying to provide some guidance about what looks good. I truly don't mean any offense by this, but I think a man can only look so good when he is dressed by his wife/girlfriend/mother.

You may not have intended it, but this remark does offend me.

I actively seek out input from my wife regarding what to wear for certain events, and I don't think that in any way makes me look less good than if I'd decided entirely on my own what to wear.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: SlitherHiss on August 20, 2013, 12:01:45 PM
I am trying to provide some guidance about what looks good. I truly don't mean any offense by this, but I think a man can only look so good when he is dressed by his wife/girlfriend/mother.

You may not have intended it, but this remark does offend me.

I actively seek out input from my wife regarding what to wear for certain events, and I don't think that in any way makes me look less good than if I'd decided entirely on my own what to wear.

I don't know what circles you run in, msulinski, but most of the men (and boys, for that matter) that I know are pretty conscious of their appearance. They dress themselves well. Sometimes, there are misfires, but then again, there are misfires among the women and girls I know, too. (Myself, especially.) The only one I know who has regular input from his wife is literally colorblind.

As women, and as wives, I think we do everyone (ourselves included) a massive disservice by buying into the "dumb hubby" stereotype. There will always be people of both sexes who have trouble figuring out what to wear; whether out of habit, learned helplessness, simple ignorance, or some combination thereof. Let's not make this a sexist thing.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: WillyNilly on August 20, 2013, 12:13:59 PM
I am trying to provide some guidance about what looks good. I truly don't mean any offense by this, but I think a man can only look so good when he is dressed by his wife/girlfriend/mother.

You may not have intended it, but this remark does offend me.

I actively seek out input from my wife regarding what to wear for certain events, and I don't think that in any way makes me look less good than if I'd decided entirely on my own what to wear.

Yeah I absolutely would not have married my DH (or dated any boyfriends before him) if he could not dress himself well.
I do think sometimes people (men and women alike) need a bit of help in figuring out what is appropriate for an occasion - if one has never been to a networking event, or formal brunch, or community rally, or rock concert, or whatever they might need a bit of help from friends and family on what they should wear, but I expect any adult to be able to put together a flattering and appropriate outfit once they know the perimeters of an event.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: cass2591 on August 20, 2013, 12:26:45 PM
msulinski, many men I know have a better sense of appropriate dress than I do. Sartorial splendor, or lack thereof, is not gender specific.

It would serve you well to stay away from stereotypes here because people will call you on it.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 20, 2013, 01:04:39 PM
I'm not sure why everyone thinks that I said men can't dress themselves. Certainly there are those who can. What I said (or at least what I intended to say), is that I don't believe that men whose wives/girlfriends/mothers dress them end up looking very good. I realize that a lot of the time this happens out of necessity, when some men (as in the OPs case) refuse to put any effort in their appearance.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 20, 2013, 01:05:38 PM
I am trying to provide some guidance about what looks good. I truly don't mean any offense by this, but I think a man can only look so good when he is dressed by his wife/girlfriend/mother.

You may not have intended it, but this remark does offend me.

I actively seek out input from my wife regarding what to wear for certain events, and I don't think that in any way makes me look less good than if I'd decided entirely on my own what to wear.

Seeking input from a spouse is different. I do this as well. I was referring to situations where one's spouse picks out her husband's entire outfit.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: gmatoy on August 20, 2013, 01:08:52 PM

I live in the US too, and black seems to be the most popular suit color I've seen around here. As far as what colors to wear with it, I find black far more versatile (and shades of black, like charcoal). I never wear navy because almost nothing looks good with it but white.

Daisy, My job interview suit is navy. I pair it with white, pale blue, and fuchsia or hot pink or pale pink, depending on the type of job. I was hired for a job in an art type of environment because I chose the fuchsia blouse.  I realize that might not work for men, but your name made me think you might be female. Even if you didn't want a suit of navy, knowing what colors with which navy could be paired might make a skirt or pair of slacks in navy a more practical choice.

Also, while I do not wear green since getting out of the Army, a friend of mine wears green with her navy suit and it totally works for her.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 20, 2013, 01:12:20 PM

I live in the US too, and black seems to be the most popular suit color I've seen around here. As far as what colors to wear with it, I find black far more versatile (and shades of black, like charcoal). I never wear navy because almost nothing looks good with it but white.

Daisy, My job interview suit is navy. I pair it with white, pale blue, and fuchsia or hot pink or pale pink, depending on the type of job. I was hired for a job in an art type of environment because I chose the fuchsia blouse.  I realize that might not work for men, but your name made me think you might be female. Even if you didn't want a suit of navy, knowing what colors with which navy could be paired might make a skirt or pair of slacks in navy a more practical choice.

Also, while I do not wear green since getting out of the Army, a friend of mine wears green with her navy suit and it totally works for her.

I missed this one. I agree that navy looks good with just about anything. A navy suit with a white, light blue, mid-blue, pink etc shirt looks great. I don't think the same can be said for black. Also, navy suits allow more versatility in terms of shoe color. Black, brown and burgundy shoes all look good with navy. For black suits, you are pretty much stuck with black shoes.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: NutellaNut on August 20, 2013, 01:22:49 PM
Msulinski, it's interesting you feel black isn't common in menswear in the US.  In the three major US cities I've lived and worked in as an adult, black (and related shades up to charcoal) is a very commonly worn color for men, suits through more casual pants.  It's a very versatile neutral, going well with many colors - clear brights or even more muted colors with the right shade of black.  If you go by what is being offered in stores, the men's department in most stores in my current area are a positive sea of blacks. 

OP, I agree with previous posters - help your guy pick out a couple pairs of pants - black/charcoal/khaki/other neutral that looks good for him - and a few shirts that coordinate.  Then maybe he'll have an idea what will work for those in-between events.

Anyone remember Garanimals clothing line?  When I was a kid you just had to match the tags, and you knew it would coordinate,  Sometimes I kind of wish they would make an adult version.  :)
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 20, 2013, 01:41:38 PM
Msulinski, it's interesting you feel black isn't common in menswear in the US.  In the three major US cities I've lived and worked in as an adult, black (and related shades up to charcoal) is a very commonly worn color for men, suits through more casual pants.  It's a very versatile neutral, going well with many colors - clear brights or even more muted colors with the right shade of black.  If you go by what is being offered in stores, the men's department in most stores in my current area are a positive sea of blacks. 


Referring to black being common, I was referring specifically suits. I do see a lot of black pants, but not a lot of black suits. And by black, I mean black, not gray and charcoal. I guess we disagree that black goes with everything well. It can have the tendency to take on a greenish cast in fluorescent lighting, which is how most office buildings are lit. I also think it can wash out many complexions, and drains the colors around it.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: SamiHami on August 20, 2013, 01:45:52 PM
Regarding black, I'm not sure where you live, but in the US, almost no one wears black suits to work. They are also not very versatile, especially compared to navy or charcoal. Black is very severe, looks bad in daylight, and can wash out many complexions.

It also limits the choices of shirts. You pretty much have white and maybe light blue. A lot of other colors don't look great with black. Same with ties. Would you wear a brown tie with a black suit? Charcoal and navy dial down the severity and allow for more color combinations that look good.

With black pants or a suit, you have one option for shoes: black. Brown shoes with black pants looks terrible.

Please don't speak for the whole US. I've been working in professional environments in the US for almost 30 years; black is extremely commonplace. And truth be told, I disagree with your other statements regarding black clothing as well. Many colors look great with black.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: cass2591 on August 20, 2013, 01:49:00 PM
Quote
I truly don't mean any offense by this, but I think a man can only look so good when he is dressed by his wife/girlfriend/mother.

I stand corrected. I obviously missed the operative word. My apologies.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: BioformCassie on August 20, 2013, 01:54:04 PM
Anyone remember Garanimals clothing line?  When I was a kid you just had to match the tags, and you knew it would coordinate,  Sometimes I kind of wish they would make an adult version.  :)

Kind of off topic but the creator of that line is color blind. So he designed the clothes that way so he would know which ones went together. I think that's pretty awesome.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Xandraea on August 20, 2013, 01:58:34 PM

Black goes with every color imaginable, not only white or light blue.  Black along with brighter colors when done right can look very sharp.  I've no clue, msulinski, where you get the idea that wearing black would limit color choices in any way.  Also, every man I've ever known owns black shoes, often in several degrees of formality, from dress to office to casual.

*snip*
OP, I would urge you to seek men's style advice outside of this forum, as you are not likely to get any adivce from well-dressed men. The previously-mentioend askandyaboutclothes.com and styleforum.net are good places to go.

There are men who read and comment on Ehell, and to assume they know nothing about appropriate style is indeed insulting and offensive.  As others have stated, it is wise to avoid making sweeping generalizations.


OP, WillyNilly's suggestion of slacks is a good one, and others have given good tips as well.  Perhaps once your husband has some pieces in his wardrobe that are between a full suit and jeans, it'll be easier for him to choose appropriate dress for all occasions.  By the way, have you seen closet rod labels? You could help him section off his closet into categories to make it even easier to choose!   http://www.containerstore.com/shop/closet/hangers/hangerAccessories?productId=10020983


Also, NutellaNut, Garanimals   ;D   And BioformCassie, I didn't know that little fact, but that is awesome! What a perfect solution for colorblindness.  I have a few colorblind friends who would probably appreciate such a system in their grown-up clothes.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Saki_Fiz on August 20, 2013, 02:16:27 PM
Did a quick amazon search and found this one: http://www.amazon.com/AskMen-com-Presents-Style-Bible-Building/dp/0061208507/ref=sr_1_6?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1377026046&sr=1-6&keywords=mens+style
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: MurPl1 on August 20, 2013, 02:50:57 PM
I'm not sure why everyone thinks that I said men can't dress themselves. Certainly there are those who can. What I said (or at least what I intended to say), is that I don't believe that men whose wives/girlfriends/mothers dress them end up looking very good. I realize that a lot of the time this happens out of necessity, when some men (as in the OPs case) refuse to put any effort in their appearance.

Yeah, here's the thing - that's just as offensive a generalization.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: MurPl1 on August 20, 2013, 02:53:28 PM
Anyone remember Garanimals clothing line?  When I was a kid you just had to match the tags, and you knew it would coordinate,  Sometimes I kind of wish they would make an adult version.  :)

DH calls Mens Warehouse Garanimals for Men.  Because they will hook you up with a suit, three shirts and 2 ties that all go.  Provided you stick them in the closet together, you don't even need to add the Blue Giraffe tag. ;)
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 20, 2013, 02:58:05 PM

Black goes with every color imaginable, not only white or light blue.  Black along with brighter colors when done right can look very sharp.  I've no clue, msulinski, where you get the idea that wearing black would limit color choices in any way.  Also, every man I've ever known owns black shoes, often in several degrees of formality, from dress to office to casual.

*snip*
OP, I would urge you to seek men's style advice outside of this forum, as you are not likely to get any adivce from well-dressed men. The previously-mentioend askandyaboutclothes.com and styleforum.net are good places to go.

There are men who read and comment on Ehell, and to assume they know nothing about appropriate style is indeed insulting and offensive.  As others have stated, it is wise to avoid making sweeping generalizations.


Regarding the bolded comment, I am sure there are some on this forum that may know something about dressing well, but there are many more who don't, so the good advice will get lost among the not so good.

This thread is a case in point. I am the only one speaking out against black. I know saying that black doesn't look good in most situations sounds shocking to many when they first hear it. I can assure you however, that this is an established rule in the realm of classic menswear, at least in the Western world. If someone spends a little time researching he/she is likely to find evidence to support this. The earlier-mentioned forums are good places to start. There are also numerous books about menswear for those interested.

One can certainly "get away" with wearing black suits and pants and whatever, but it is seldom the best choice. Most of the best dressed out there (again, in the context of classic menswear, which I assume is what the OP is asking about) are not wearing black except when in a tuxedo.

As for black shoes, I don't disagree with you. I was writing about black suits, pants and sportcoats. I still think brown shoes are better than black in casual situations, however.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Goosey on August 20, 2013, 03:00:41 PM
I personally see a lot of men in black suits and the only thing I've ever thought is that they look sharp.

Brown doesn't look good on everyone.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 20, 2013, 03:01:29 PM
I'm not sure why everyone thinks that I said men can't dress themselves. Certainly there are those who can. What I said (or at least what I intended to say), is that I don't believe that men whose wives/girlfriends/mothers dress them end up looking very good. I realize that a lot of the time this happens out of necessity, when some men (as in the OPs case) refuse to put any effort in their appearance.

Yeah, here's the thing - that's just as offensive a generalization.

I'm not sure how - it is hard to look good when you don't care how you look. When someone else dresses you, that person is doing his/her best to understand what you might like and look good in. Chances are, without your input, that person will miss the mark. You could very well end up being uncomfortable in your clothes, which can lower confidence.

I'm not saying that a person can't put together something passable or even decent for someone else, but it will almost never be great.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: stargazer on August 20, 2013, 03:11:03 PM

This thread is a case in point. I am the only one speaking out against black. I know saying that black doesn't look good in most situations sounds shocking to many when they first hear it. I can assure you however, that this is an established rule in the realm of classic menswear, at least in the Western world.

It clearly is not an established "rule" when so many of us see men in black suits on a daily basis, and most of them look darn good.  Men can wear any color with black (except for brown although it can be done) and I don't see them looking "washed out".  But the men in my life do prefer black b/c they KNOW that any color works with it.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Goosey on August 20, 2013, 03:12:14 PM
Maybe it's a "classic" rule - aka an outdated one.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: cass2591 on August 20, 2013, 03:26:27 PM
msulinski you have made your point about, or rather in this case, against black and I think everyone reading this thread gets it. Just because people disagree with you doesn't mean they are wrong. They disagree and there's really no reason to belabor the issue.

In other words, move on.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: *inviteseller on August 20, 2013, 03:58:41 PM
I was married to a fashion challenged man but after a few shopping trips (thankfully I worked in management at a Department store so re outfitting him with a discount helped!) he had his work clothes, casual clothes, and a few dressier pieces.  I did not just go and buy them on my own, I made him go with me (oh what fun  ::) ) so I could steer him towards the correct pieces for occasions, but he picked what he liked.  I did not 'dress' my husband..I find it off to think men can only look good if a woman dresses them.  For the majority of his adult life he worked in a field that was a jeans and t shirt type job, but he had been put into more of a management position where, while not suit & tie due to working in a warehouse, he had to bring up the wardrobe a few notches and he wasn't sure what was the correct clothes for what his new position would call for.

As an aside re: black clothes - Macy's Department stores requires it's employees to wear all black dress clothes, men and women alike, and they have to be dressed very smart.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Marbles on August 20, 2013, 05:45:42 PM
OP, if you'd like a reference for your DH, I'd suggest the Art of Manliness website. Its dress and grooming section has a lot of helpful information.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: White Lotus on August 20, 2013, 06:08:05 PM
Muslinski has one very valid point about black, though.  Just because pieces are black doesn't mean they will go together.  There are shades and shades of black.  When black wears out, or is cheap, it can take on a very unpleasant greenish cast. However, I think the use of colored shirts and ties can distance the black from the skin so that black can flatter everyone.  Anything goes with black, even brown, if done properly -- and no brown shoes with black or variations, please!  A lot of black fabrics pick up lint dreadfully, though.  The Professor, who dresses himself, prefers a pin stripe for that reason, for his suit, which he wears seldom. He has a dinner jacket, so those do him. If he bought a second suit, it would probably be a summer weight light grey pinstripe, from recent mutterings.  He is a slacks and sport coat fellow mostly, tending towards tweedy things, or linen in summer, with collared shirts and usually ties, sometimes turtlenecks. Jeans or khakis with polos or turtlenecks seem to do him for casual wear.  I wish my clothes were that easy!
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: artk2002 on August 21, 2013, 05:54:55 PM
To clarify, I am speaking from a menswear perspective, and it may have nothing to do with what women wear. I mentioned it because this thread is about what a man should wear in various environments. I am trying to provide some guidance about what looks good. I truly don't mean any offense by this, but I think a man can only look so good when he is dressed by his wife/girlfriend/mother.

OP, I would urge you to seek men's style advice outside of this forum, as you are not likely to get any adivce from well-dressed men. The previously-mentioend askandyaboutclothes.com and styleforum.net are good places to go.

Please think twice before criticizing the residents of this forum. Even with the modifying 'so', you managed to denigrate pretty much everyone's advice. Would you care to share your qualifications to do so?

Just to contribute to the topic: Although I normally dress very casually, I just left a 2-day business conference. Today I was wearing black pleat-front pants, a royal blue silk band collar shirt and a black linen sport coat. Yesterday was similar except that the shirt was black. I got some compliments on the outfit. It's a specific "look" that I'm going for; I know I look good in predominately black and jewel tones.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: White Lotus on August 21, 2013, 06:15:24 PM
Art, it sounds like you looked great -- and are a pretty snappy dresser!  Prof's getting some band collared shirts pretty soon, I think.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: katycoo on August 21, 2013, 06:17:20 PM
To clarify, I am speaking from a menswear perspective, and it may have nothing to do with what women wear. I mentioned it because this thread is about what a man should wear in various environments.

IME professionally, black remains an extremely common choice for many men, although I must admit that for business-wear it is often a textured or pinstriped choice, rather than solid black.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: katycoo on August 21, 2013, 06:17:29 PM
I missed this one. I agree that navy looks good with just about anything. A navy suit with a white, light blue, mid-blue, pink etc shirt looks great. I don't think the same can be said for black. Also, navy suits allow more versatility in terms of shoe color. Black, brown and burgundy shoes all look good with navy. For black suits, you are pretty much stuck with black shoes.

My brain just exploded.  I disagree vehemently.  The only shoes that look good with navy, are navy.  Or cream/white, but on men this can look a bit pimp.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: squeakers on August 21, 2013, 06:37:00 PM
I missed this one. I agree that navy looks good with just about anything. A navy suit with a white, light blue, mid-blue, pink etc shirt looks great. I don't think the same can be said for black. Also, navy suits allow more versatility in terms of shoe color. Black, brown and burgundy shoes all look good with navy. For black suits, you are pretty much stuck with black shoes.

My brain just exploded.  I disagree vehemently.  The only shoes that look good with navy, are navy.  Or cream/white, but on men this can look a bit pimp.

This guy disagrees with you: http://www.theshoesnobblog.com/2010/02/shoe-color-vs-suit-color.html

Me? I seldom look at people's feet if I can help it. 
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: katycoo on August 21, 2013, 07:38:19 PM
I missed this one. I agree that navy looks good with just about anything. A navy suit with a white, light blue, mid-blue, pink etc shirt looks great. I don't think the same can be said for black. Also, navy suits allow more versatility in terms of shoe color. Black, brown and burgundy shoes all look good with navy. For black suits, you are pretty much stuck with black shoes.

My brain just exploded.  I disagree vehemently.  The only shoes that look good with navy, are navy.  Or cream/white, but on men this can look a bit pimp.

This guy disagrees with you: http://www.theshoesnobblog.com/2010/02/shoe-color-vs-suit-color.html

Me? I seldom look at people's feet if I can help it.

That guy can disagree if he wants to - he's just comfortable in his wrongness :D

The men pictured on that blog were also wearing their pants too short.  Particularly the second man.  Admittedly in those pics those shoes didn't look awful, but they were also quite light tones.  I remain of the opionon that navy with black shoes is the devil's pairing.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: doodlemor on August 21, 2013, 11:20:52 PM
Here is a lighthearted article from the Mail. 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2399341/Would-YOU-let-man-pack-holiday-cases-We-did--ended-gardening-clothes-make-knickers.html

Husbands were asked to pack themselves and their wives for a week's trip to a sunny destination.  The men seemed very thoughtful, but didn't know exactly which clothes their wives actually would wear.  One guy didn't pack any knickers for his wife, another packed a years old maternity dress because it had been an evening dress, and one packed his wife's hair straighteners "because they looked important."

The article does stereotype gender roles a bit, but I thought the guys really tried to do a good job in a sweet way. 
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: PurpleFrog on August 22, 2013, 03:14:25 AM
FFirstly I'd like to thank everyone for their contributions, I'm going to reply to some points indiviually, as my phone isn't playing ball.

Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: PurpleFrog on August 22, 2013, 03:44:31 AM
I feel your pain! Luckily, DH has agreed to my minimum requirements, which is to have a dark suit with the choice of a coloured or white shirt and a suitable tie, plus sports coats in both black and brown that may or may not be worn with jeans, plus a pair of trousers that are not jeans. He also understands the difference between "casual" clothes i.e. not formal clothes, and "leisure clothes" i.e. stuff he wears in his leisure time.

http://askandyaboutclothes.com/clothing/style-tips/cracking-the-dress-code

Thanks I shall pass on the link.

I'm a guy that used to struggle with the being over- or under-dressed, but I've figured out a pretty easy system:

1) Casual (around the house, fishing, out running errands): Jeans or Khaki cargo-pants with t-shirt or polo shirt.
2) A bit less casual (Dinner with the in-laws, the evening service at my church, work): Black or Khaki slacks (like Dockers), polo shirt or casual sweater.
3) Somewhat formal (morning service at my church, clients at work): Black slacks or the pants from my suit (no suspenders), shirt & tie (I have a half dozen shirts and about 10 different ties).  No jacket unless it's cold out.
4) Formal: Suit pants with suspenders, Shirt & Tie, Jacket.

I disagree with Msulinski about black.  A black suit paired with shirts and ties in a variety of colors can be very flexible and appropriate for a wide variety of situations and environments.

MrTango I'm cutting this out and sticking it inside the wardrobe! Thank you so much.
I'm not sure why everyone thinks that I said men can't dress themselves. Certainly there are those who can. What I said (or at least what I intended to say), is that I don't believe that men whose wives/girlfriends/mothers dress them end up  very good. I realize that a lot of the time this happens out of necessity, when some men (as in the OPs case) refuse to put any effort in their appearance.

Msulinski: Nowhere did I say that he refused to put in any effort, I said he couldn't understand the subtle variations for events and locations. I find your assumption quite offensive. As to the black issue it is the predominant colour for work suits in the UK.
Anyone remember Garanimals clothing line?  When I was a kid you just had to match the tags, and you knew it would coordinate,  Sometimes I kind of wish they would make an adult version.  :)

Kind of off topic but the creator of that line is color blind. So he designed the clothes that way so he would know which ones went together. I think that's pretty awesome.
[/quote
They really do need this for adults. DH is red-green colour blind, I don't mind him asking I colours clash/the shade of the same colour are the same etc, I just wish he could grasp styles.
OP, if you'd like a reference for your DH, I'd suggest the Art of Manliness website. Its dress and grooming section has a lot of helpful information.

Again a great source to pass on. :D
Thank you WillyNilly and Xandreae, I shall certainly try this, its currently arranged by colour to try to combat that, but its obviously failing LOL
OP, if you'd like a reference for your DH, I'd suggest the Art of Manliness website. Its dress and grooming section has a lot of helpful information.

Another great source thanks.

Thank you all, there's some great sources he can use to educate himslef, and some great ideas I can use to help him with out having to drag him through the process by his ear! :)
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 22, 2013, 07:15:07 AM
I missed this one. I agree that navy looks good with just about anything. A navy suit with a white, light blue, mid-blue, pink etc shirt looks great. I don't think the same can be said for black. Also, navy suits allow more versatility in terms of shoe color. Black, brown and burgundy shoes all look good with navy. For black suits, you are pretty much stuck with black shoes.

My brain just exploded.  I disagree vehemently.  The only shoes that look good with navy, are navy.  Or cream/white, but on men this can look a bit pimp.

I'm not sure I am even allowed to post in this thread anymore, but since posters keep responding to my posts, I guess I'll reply.

I just can't see how you think that the only shoes that look good with navy suits are navy. That is silly. Navy suits are classic businesswear for men. Navy shoes are not. I know of every few manufacturers who even make navy shoes. Go into a decent men's shoe store and look at dress shoes. You will see black, brown, and, to a lesser extent, burgundy. You will have a hard time finding a navy pair in a conservative style appropriate for business. What color shoes do you think all of those men are wearing when they wear their navy suits?
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 22, 2013, 07:18:56 AM
Here is a lighthearted article from the Mail. 

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2399341/Would-YOU-let-man-pack-holiday-cases-We-did--ended-gardening-clothes-make-knickers.html

Husbands were asked to pack themselves and their wives for a week's trip to a sunny destination.  The men seemed very thoughtful, but didn't know exactly which clothes their wives actually would wear.  One guy didn't pack any knickers for his wife, another packed a years old maternity dress because it had been an evening dress, and one packed his wife's hair straighteners "because they looked important."

The article does stereotype gender roles a bit, but I thought the guys really tried to do a good job in a sweet way.

Interesting article. There is no way I would pack for my wife. I'm sure I would get some things right, but I would also forget some important things. I can (and do) pack for myself just fine. If my wife had to pack for me, I'm sure she would forget some things for me, as well.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: MariaE on August 22, 2013, 07:47:45 AM
I missed this one. I agree that navy looks good with just about anything. A navy suit with a white, light blue, mid-blue, pink etc shirt looks great. I don't think the same can be said for black. Also, navy suits allow more versatility in terms of shoe color. Black, brown and burgundy shoes all look good with navy. For black suits, you are pretty much stuck with black shoes.

My brain just exploded.  I disagree vehemently.  The only shoes that look good with navy, are navy.  Or cream/white, but on men this can look a bit pimp.

Just goes how subjective taste is, because my brain just exploded at reading about your brain explosion ;) I'd never recommend navy shoes to go with a navy suit (and even less cream/white shoes).
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Goosey on August 22, 2013, 08:14:52 AM
I don't think brown shoes work with navy (warm color vs. cool color) but black shoes definitely do.

And red shoes :-D
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: MariaE on August 22, 2013, 08:18:08 AM
I don't think brown shoes work with navy (warm color vs. cool color) but black shoes definitely do.

And red shoes :-D

I don't necessarily disagree, but isn't red a warm colour too?

But then, red shoes are always appropriate ;)
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Goosey on August 22, 2013, 08:18:50 AM
I don't think brown shoes work with navy (warm color vs. cool color) but black shoes definitely do.

And red shoes :-D

I don't necessarily disagree, but isn't red a warm colour too?

But then, red shoes are always appropriate ;)

Depends on the shade of red. There are definitely warm reds and cool reds.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 22, 2013, 08:28:59 AM
I don't think brown shoes work with navy (warm color vs. cool color) but black shoes definitely do.

And red shoes :-D

I don't necessarily disagree, but isn't red a warm colour too?

But then, red shoes are always appropriate ;)

Depends on the shade of red. There are definitely warm reds and cool reds.

We aren't talking about menswear anymore, are we?
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Goosey on August 22, 2013, 08:35:00 AM
I don't think brown shoes work with navy (warm color vs. cool color) but black shoes definitely do.

And red shoes :-D

I don't necessarily disagree, but isn't red a warm colour too?

But then, red shoes are always appropriate ;)

Depends on the shade of red. There are definitely warm reds and cool reds.

We aren't talking about menswear anymore, are we?

Why do you say that?
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 22, 2013, 08:40:28 AM
I don't think brown shoes work with navy (warm color vs. cool color) but black shoes definitely do.

And red shoes :-D

I don't necessarily disagree, but isn't red a warm colour too?

But then, red shoes are always appropriate ;)

Depends on the shade of red. There are definitely warm reds and cool reds.

We aren't talking about menswear anymore, are we?

Why do you say that?

The red shoes. Unless we are talking about burgundy/merlot, most men don't wear red shoes, at least to work. I do see some women wearing red shoes from time to time, even in a conservative office environment.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Goosey on August 22, 2013, 08:42:30 AM
I don't think brown shoes work with navy (warm color vs. cool color) but black shoes definitely do.

And red shoes :-D

I don't necessarily disagree, but isn't red a warm colour too?

But then, red shoes are always appropriate ;)

Depends on the shade of red. There are definitely warm reds and cool reds.

We aren't talking about menswear anymore, are we?

Why do you say that?

The red shoes. Unless we are talking about burgundy/merlot, most men don't wear red shoes, at least to work. I do see some women wearing red shoes from time to time, even in a conservative office environment.

They could wear red ties/accents. So, not necessarily just talking about shoes.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: VorFemme on August 22, 2013, 09:54:21 AM
Classic "navy blue" - military uniforms are worn with highly polished black shoes.

And since VorGuy grew up with a military father & went into the military - he is not always clear on what the "uniform of the day" equivalent is when wearing civvies instead of picking a uniform (four levels' - battle dress/fatigues for manual labor, shirt & uniform pants without jacket for office & indoor work, shirt, tie, jacket, & uniform pants for formal events such as most ceremonial events (weddings, funerals, change of command, etc. - "Sunday best" equivalent - or possibly Easter Sunday Best), and the mess dress (or uniform with white tux shirt for lower paid & younger ranks not likely to have the funds for the full mess dress uniform) for all formal events - where civilians might wear a tux, cocktail dress, or evening dress. 

I have been known to tell him that me wearing "GOOD dress - Sunday Best" does not mean that his slacks and a polo shirt are the same level of formality - he doesn't always believe me - but he doesn't pack anything for vacation to go "out to dinner" in except slacks and a polo shirt.  The other things are shorts, jeans, t-shirts, swimsuit, and a couple of Hawaiian shirts....no dress shirts at all and he wouldn't even think of packing a tie on vacation unless we were going to one of the steak restaurants where part of the ambiance is that any ties are cut off and nailed to the ceiling - which looks like an "ugly tie context" competition.

I love black - but not everyone looks good in it - which is why shirts that are NOT black can be worn with black, brown, kakhi, camel, idigo denim, or any number of other colors that are more flattering to ones' coloring, if black doesn't work.

The only red shoes I've seen guys lately wear were for very young guys (kids) and had cartoon characters on them......
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Klein Bottle on August 22, 2013, 10:13:53 AM
My ex was a horrible dresser, also.  He would never change clothes when he came home from work, so many a nice shirt I bought him wound up with grease stains or grass stains.  I just finally quit buying him anything.  He is also built oddly, with broad shoulders and a largeish belly, so that pull-over shirts hit him above his navel and looked really stupid, as he refused to see he needed a larger size.  One time we were in Toronto to see a show, and he dressed in a nice suit he'd brought...and nasty old Hush Puppy loafers without socks.    ???  He had not packed dress shoes and by the time I realized it, we were running late for the show, no time to go shopping.  He is famous for wearing jeans and sneakers to church and funerals, etc.  Being with him was really embarrassing sometimes, and he refused to listen to my advice.

This man also hated to shave, so he often went around with that three-day beard growth thing.  OK in the eighties when Don Johnson sported it, not OK for him or for modern times.

I don't know what to advise, but you have my complete empathy and understanding!
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Yvaine on August 22, 2013, 10:18:26 AM
I missed this one. I agree that navy looks good with just about anything. A navy suit with a white, light blue, mid-blue, pink etc shirt looks great. I don't think the same can be said for black. Also, navy suits allow more versatility in terms of shoe color. Black, brown and burgundy shoes all look good with navy. For black suits, you are pretty much stuck with black shoes.

My brain just exploded.  I disagree vehemently.  The only shoes that look good with navy, are navy.  Or cream/white, but on men this can look a bit pimp.

I'm not sure I am even allowed to post in this thread anymore, but since posters keep responding to my posts, I guess I'll reply.

I just can't see how you think that the only shoes that look good with navy suits are navy. That is silly. Navy suits are classic businesswear for men. Navy shoes are not. I know of every few manufacturers who even make navy shoes. Go into a decent men's shoe store and look at dress shoes. You will see black, brown, and, to a lesser extent, burgundy. You will have a hard time finding a navy pair in a conservative style appropriate for business. What color shoes do you think all of those men are wearing when they wear their navy suits?

My ex told me that there is a Dude Fashion Rule that you can't wear brown with navy, which surprised me because I think (just instinctively, without referring to any fashion rules) that the colors look good together. That, along with some other rules he had about ties and such, convinced me that there are Dude Fashion Rules I simply don't know. He always wore high-water pants, though, so who knows.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: auntmeegs on August 22, 2013, 10:19:43 AM
My ex was a horrible dresser, also.  He would never change clothes when he came home from work, so many a nice shirt I bought him wound up with grease stains or grass stains.  I just finally quit buying him anything.  He is also built oddly, with broad shoulders and a largeish belly, so that pull-over shirts hit him above his navel and looked really stupid, as he refused to see he needed a larger size.  One time we were in Toronto to see a show, and he dressed in a nice suit he'd brought...and nasty old Hush Puppy loafers without socks.    ???  He had not packed dress shoes and by the time I realized it, we were running late for the show, no time to go shopping.  He is famous for wearing jeans and sneakers to church and funerals, etc.  Being with him was really embarrassing sometimes, and he refused to listen to my advice.

This man also hated to shave, so he often went around with that three-day beard growth thing.  OK in the eighties when Don Johnson sported it, not OK for him or for modern times.

I don't know what to advise, but you have my complete empathy and understanding!

How interesting!  We were married to the same person!!!!   ;D
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Yvaine on August 22, 2013, 10:25:21 AM
My ex was a horrible dresser, also.  He would never change clothes when he came home from work, so many a nice shirt I bought him wound up with grease stains or grass stains.  I just finally quit buying him anything.  He is also built oddly, with broad shoulders and a largeish belly, so that pull-over shirts hit him above his navel and looked really stupid, as he refused to see he needed a larger size.  One time we were in Toronto to see a show, and he dressed in a nice suit he'd brought...and nasty old Hush Puppy loafers without socks.    ???  He had not packed dress shoes and by the time I realized it, we were running late for the show, no time to go shopping.  He is famous for wearing jeans and sneakers to church and funerals, etc.  Being with him was really embarrassing sometimes, and he refused to listen to my advice.

This man also hated to shave, so he often went around with that three-day beard growth thing.  OK in the eighties when Don Johnson sported it, not OK for him or for modern times.

I don't know what to advise, but you have my complete empathy and understanding!

How interesting!  We were married to the same person!!!!   ;D

Mine was just really, really devoted to his high-water pants. I mean, I'm 4 inches shorter, with legs that are short for my height, and I wear my inseam 2 inches longer than he does. I may not have much room to talk, though, as my fondness for paisley made his retinas burn, I think.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 22, 2013, 11:24:14 AM
I missed this one. I agree that navy looks good with just about anything. A navy suit with a white, light blue, mid-blue, pink etc shirt looks great. I don't think the same can be said for black. Also, navy suits allow more versatility in terms of shoe color. Black, brown and burgundy shoes all look good with navy. For black suits, you are pretty much stuck with black shoes.

My brain just exploded.  I disagree vehemently.  The only shoes that look good with navy, are navy.  Or cream/white, but on men this can look a bit pimp.

I'm not sure I am even allowed to post in this thread anymore, but since posters keep responding to my posts, I guess I'll reply.

I just can't see how you think that the only shoes that look good with navy suits are navy. That is silly. Navy suits are classic businesswear for men. Navy shoes are not. I know of every few manufacturers who even make navy shoes. Go into a decent men's shoe store and look at dress shoes. You will see black, brown, and, to a lesser extent, burgundy. You will have a hard time finding a navy pair in a conservative style appropriate for business. What color shoes do you think all of those men are wearing when they wear their navy suits?

My ex told me that there is a Dude Fashion Rule that you can't wear brown with navy, which surprised me because I think (just instinctively, without referring to any fashion rules) that the colors look good together. That, along with some other rules he had about ties and such, convinced me that there are Dude Fashion Rules I simply don't know. He always wore high-water pants, though, so who knows.

There are a whole bunch of guy rules that many do not know (including a lot of guys), but not pairing brown with navy is definitely not one of them. If anything, these "rules" encourage pairing brown and navy. There is the color wheel to back this up. Many fashion/style articles on color combinations recommend pairing complementary colors (those opposite on the color wheel). Blue and brown are essentially on opposite sides, thus optimal for pairing.

Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Figgie on August 22, 2013, 12:03:46 PM
My spouse, while not color-blind, is unable to distinguish shades of color.  Which means that something that is pretty obviously blue looks purple to him.  And something that is green will look gray.  This means that he has learned to ask me before trying new color combinations.  :)

He memorizes which color shirts goes with which color pants, but he does need help whenever he buys anything that is a new color.  He is always dressed appropriately for social situations and usually the only question he asks is if he needs to wear his tuxedo or not.  He doesn't remember the rules for when a suit is acceptable and when a tuxedo is necessary.  :)
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Goosey on August 22, 2013, 12:14:48 PM
I missed this one. I agree that navy looks good with just about anything. A navy suit with a white, light blue, mid-blue, pink etc shirt looks great. I don't think the same can be said for black. Also, navy suits allow more versatility in terms of shoe color. Black, brown and burgundy shoes all look good with navy. For black suits, you are pretty much stuck with black shoes.

My brain just exploded.  I disagree vehemently.  The only shoes that look good with navy, are navy.  Or cream/white, but on men this can look a bit pimp.

I'm not sure I am even allowed to post in this thread anymore, but since posters keep responding to my posts, I guess I'll reply.

I just can't see how you think that the only shoes that look good with navy suits are navy. That is silly. Navy suits are classic businesswear for men. Navy shoes are not. I know of every few manufacturers who even make navy shoes. Go into a decent men's shoe store and look at dress shoes. You will see black, brown, and, to a lesser extent, burgundy. You will have a hard time finding a navy pair in a conservative style appropriate for business. What color shoes do you think all of those men are wearing when they wear their navy suits?

My ex told me that there is a Dude Fashion Rule that you can't wear brown with navy, which surprised me because I think (just instinctively, without referring to any fashion rules) that the colors look good together. That, along with some other rules he had about ties and such, convinced me that there are Dude Fashion Rules I simply don't know. He always wore high-water pants, though, so who knows.

There are a whole bunch of guy rules that many do not know (including a lot of guys), but not pairing brown with navy is definitely not one of them. If anything, these "rules" encourage pairing brown and navy. There is the color wheel to back this up. Many fashion/style articles on color combinations recommend pairing complementary colors (those opposite on the color wheel). Blue and brown are essentially on opposite sides, thus optimal for pairing.

But navy leans more black-blue than brown-blue?
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: goldilocks on August 22, 2013, 12:49:28 PM
I have to share my story.    My husband also believes jeans are appropriate for any occasion.

My 6 year-old GD was in a ballet, at the local performing arts center.   This was during deer hunting season.   Seats were assigned, not general seating.

DH comes home and announces he's not changing from his camo.  I threw a fit - told him to put on some dress clothes (slacks and nice shirt).  We compromised on jeans and nice shirt.

We get to the center and I get a phone call just as we are entering.  I stayed in the lobby to take the call and he and my daughter go to get seated.  A few minutes later, daughter comes to the lobby as I'm finishing up my phone call.

She says - you are not going to believe this.  Stepdad is sitting right beside a friend of his - and the guy is wearing full camo!

Needless to say, this has made my job much harder!



Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 22, 2013, 01:08:22 PM
But navy leans more black-blue than brown-blue?

Is this in reference to the color wheel comment? What you are really talking about when you say "black-blue" is that you are decreasing the brightness of the blue, which is another dimension of the color wheel. You are still directly across from brown (or really orange, but brown can be just a less-bright version of orange.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Goosey on August 22, 2013, 01:11:55 PM
But navy leans more black-blue than brown-blue?

Is this in reference to the color wheel comment? What you are really talking about when you say "black-blue" is that you are decreasing the brightness of the blue, which is another dimension of the color wheel. You are still directly across from brown (or really orange, but brown can be just a less-bright version of orange.

I'm talking about different shades. There are "warm" blues that would absolutely go with brown. But there are all so "cold" blues that would look horrible with it. It depends on the blend of color.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: PurpleFrog on August 22, 2013, 01:15:10 PM
Just to clarify again, he really does try, but he just can't figure out the correct level of formality for the occation. I really don't want people to think its laziness.

Goldilocks: That's just blooming typical, I'd be quizzing DH & DD to see if they'd paid him as a set up!
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: cass2591 on August 22, 2013, 01:18:54 PM

I'm not sure I am even allowed to post in this thread anymore, but since posters keep responding to my posts, I guess I'll reply.

I just can't see how you think that the only shoes that look good with navy suits are navy. That is silly. Navy suits are classic businesswear for men. Navy shoes are not. I know of every few manufacturers who even make navy shoes. Go into a decent men's shoe store and look at dress shoes. You will see black, brown, and, to a lesser extent, burgundy. You will have a hard time finding a navy pair in a conservative style appropriate for business. What color shoes do you think all of those men are wearing when they wear their navy suits?

It's one thing to disagree with other people's fashion choices and explain why, but to call someone silly for their opinion is unacceptable.

Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Sharnita on August 22, 2013, 01:29:27 PM
I don't think that the husband's black slacks in the OP would be rude.  I think a spouse can gently share opinions but he/she needs to be careful or else risks being rude.  Everything else is a matter of taste and preference and not etiquette.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: audrey1962 on August 22, 2013, 02:34:17 PM
I don't have a problem with the black slacks either.

Having said that, I do agree that an all black suit is a tad much (a bit too much like a waiter) and I personally prefer men in gray or navy suits. IMO, black pinstripes tend to be a bit too "slick," but some men look good in them. 
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Eeep! on August 22, 2013, 06:16:43 PM
I thought of this thread when I saw this today. :)
http://www.dolcegabbana.com/dg/fashion-show/

To throw my 2 cents into the black suits ring, I live and work in the SF Bay Area and I see lots of black suits and black pants.  While I think I personally prefer a charcoal over straight black I have never given it a second thought.  Although I do think that black seems to show fabric quality better so a cheap pair of black pants tend to look a lot worse than a cheap pair of gray pants.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: katycoo on August 22, 2013, 10:08:50 PM
I missed this one. I agree that navy looks good with just about anything. A navy suit with a white, light blue, mid-blue, pink etc shirt looks great. I don't think the same can be said for black. Also, navy suits allow more versatility in terms of shoe color. Black, brown and burgundy shoes all look good with navy. For black suits, you are pretty much stuck with black shoes.

My brain just exploded.  I disagree vehemently.  The only shoes that look good with navy, are navy.  Or cream/white, but on men this can look a bit pimp.

I'm not sure I am even allowed to post in this thread anymore, but since posters keep responding to my posts, I guess I'll reply.

I just can't see how you think that the only shoes that look good with navy suits are navy. That is silly. Navy suits are classic businesswear for men. Navy shoes are not. I know of every few manufacturers who even make navy shoes. Go into a decent men's shoe store and look at dress shoes. You will see black, brown, and, to a lesser extent, burgundy. You will have a hard time finding a navy pair in a conservative style appropriate for business. What color shoes do you think all of those men are wearing when they wear their navy suits?


I missed this one. I agree that navy looks good with just about anything. A navy suit with a white, light blue, mid-blue, pink etc shirt looks great. I don't think the same can be said for black. Also, navy suits allow more versatility in terms of shoe color. Black, brown and burgundy shoes all look good with navy. For black suits, you are pretty much stuck with black shoes.

My brain just exploded.  I disagree vehemently.  The only shoes that look good with navy, are navy.  Or cream/white, but on men this can look a bit pimp.

Just goes how subjective taste is, because my brain just exploded at reading about your brain explosion ;) I'd never recommend navy shoes to go with a navy suit (and even less cream/white shoes).

Having given this further consideration, I have realised that despite my best intentions, I am twisting female style onto my perceptions.  I have no idea what colour shoes men wear with navy, and have concluded I mustn't notice.

Women, OTOH, particularly in a dress or skirt, I think should never pair navy with black.  I would go cream, nude, silver (if evening wear) or navy if I owned any.

I wonder then why its different for men?
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: ladiedeathe on August 22, 2013, 10:58:02 PM
Easy way to check out what shoes go with what suit color and style- google "man in whatever color suit", look at both the shopping and the images. You will always find designer suits and the suggested gear that goes with them. Find a few designers you like, and then look at the pictures from their runway shows- you will see the colors they chose for their suits and shoes.

Navy suits tend to say business, power, and wealth. Charcoal subtlety and class. Black suits are common, but do need careful attention to shirt and tie color and suit cut- exactly because they are so common. If the black suit is cheap, ill-cut, or just of the wrong material, it can make a man look like he works at an upscale restaurant or a cheap funeral parlor. Beige, brown, and other neutral suits can be more stylish, or fun.

For levels in between tux and jammies, again- google a designer or 6 until you find one you like- then check out his runway shows for this year and last. You can get an idea of shapes, colors, and general styles you like, and then find similar itemss at more reasonable prices.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: MariaE on August 22, 2013, 11:47:43 PM
Women, OTOH, particularly in a dress or skirt, I think should never pair navy with black.  I would go cream, nude, silver (if evening wear) or navy if I owned any.

I wonder then why its different for men?

I disagree with you there as well  ;) I'm a woman (last I checked  ;) ) and I'll happily pair my favourite navy dress with my black shoes.

I do agree that on women navy doesn't look bad with any of the other colours though, and in fact navy or black shoes would be my preference.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 23, 2013, 07:01:40 AM
Pairing navy pants/suit with black shoes appears to be very polarizing. There are those even in this thread that love it or hate it. I believe someone called it the "devil's pairing." The same is true on men's clothing boards as well. Some don't like it because you "look like a bruise." Others don't like it because it brings to mind military dress. I personally don't object.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Moralia on August 23, 2013, 07:19:11 AM
Infographics!

http://blog.mannixmarketing.com/dress-codes/

http://www.boisdale.co.uk/blog/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/Evening-Etiquette-boisdale.co_.uk_1.png

Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Mrs. Tilney on August 23, 2013, 09:53:34 AM
The other day I wore a navy pinstripe skirt and black wedges. And got complimented on my shoes by a guy. First time that's ever happened.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Goosey on August 23, 2013, 09:54:23 AM
I thought military dress blues (navy) were ALWAYS paired with black shoes?
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 23, 2013, 10:43:49 AM
I thought military dress blues (navy) were ALWAYS paired with black shoes?

I believe this is exactly why some people don't like the pairing. The mindset is that they don't want to look like they are wearing a uniform, as a uniform is something that you are forced to wear.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Goosey on August 23, 2013, 10:56:12 AM
I thought military dress blues (navy) were ALWAYS paired with black shoes?

I believe this is exactly why some people don't like the pairing. The mindset is that they don't want to look like they are wearing a uniform, as a uniform is something that you are forced to wear.

But, that means the colors do GO together, just some people associate them too closely with the military. I have to say, though, i've seen it pretty commonly out of the military too. So, even that arguement makes no sense.

Plus, men in dress blues look tasty  :P
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: msulinski on August 23, 2013, 11:14:53 AM
I thought military dress blues (navy) were ALWAYS paired with black shoes?

I believe this is exactly why some people don't like the pairing. The mindset is that they don't want to look like they are wearing a uniform, as a uniform is something that you are forced to wear.

But, that means the colors do GO together, just some people associate them too closely with the military. I have to say, though, i've seen it pretty commonly out of the military too. So, even that arguement makes no sense.

Plus, men in dress blues look tasty  :P

I don't disagree that they go together. The military association is just one reason I have seen others use to explain why they don't like it.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: daen on August 23, 2013, 02:21:07 PM
I was reminded by a previous poster's comment (about a cheap black suit making one look like one worked in an upscale restaurant) of the Father Brown short story "The Queer Feet." http://www.gutenberg.org/files/204/204-h/204-h.htm#link2H_4_0003 (http://www.gutenberg.org/files/204/204-h/204-h.htm#link2H_4_0003)

The first paragraph makes reference to a group of men who wear green dinner coats so they can't be mistaken for waiters. The remainder of the story explains why.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Twik on August 26, 2013, 09:46:50 AM
Women, OTOH, particularly in a dress or skirt, I think should never pair navy with black.  I would go cream, nude, silver (if evening wear) or navy if I owned any.

I wonder then why its different for men?

I would give money to see a man dressed for a formal event in a navy suit with silver shoes.  ;D
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: squeakers on August 26, 2013, 11:23:15 AM
Women, OTOH, particularly in a dress or skirt, I think should never pair navy with black.  I would go cream, nude, silver (if evening wear) or navy if I owned any.

I wonder then why its different for men?

I would give money to see a man dressed for a formal event in a navy suit with silver shoes.  ;D

I bet Sir Elton John has worn that combo.   ;D
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: Twik on August 26, 2013, 11:38:17 AM
But do electric boots actually go with mohair suits? That's the REAL question.
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: LeveeWoman on August 26, 2013, 11:45:21 AM
But do electric boots actually go with mohair suits? That's the REAL question.

Are braces and boots really cute?
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: CuppaTea on August 26, 2013, 01:57:42 PM


"I'm not saying that a person can't put together something passable or even decent for someone else, but it will almost never be great."

Fire all the stylist's and personal shoppers? No.  Because most people can't look at their own bodies objectively and find the right colours and cut that suits them best. It helps tremendously to have an objective eye to help. 
Title: Re: Correct Clothing for the occasion - a plea for saving my sanity.
Post by: aiki on August 26, 2013, 06:03:33 PM
But do electric boots actually go with mohair suits? That's the REAL question.

Of course. I read it in a magazine.