Saturday, May 9, 2009

Match Rules

One pet peeve of mine is when people assume that an outfit must "match" in order for it to look good.

Some guys get caught up in the misconception, but I find it especially prevalent among chicks --probably simply as a result of the fact that women (typically) have so many more accessories, shoes and clothes than guys from which to match.

Needless to say, a guy wearing a navy suit needn't wear a navy shirt and a navy tie (nor must a chick wear matching earrings, makeup, dress etc.). Style guides are near-unanimous that a guy should never wear a pocket square and tie with the exact same pattern.
Matching, taken to its logical extreme leads to absurd results:

I think the more important question when assembling an outfit is not whether the clothes match, but rather whether the clothes are compatible with one another, i.e. whether the colours complement one another. You shopuld be asking: "Does purple go with grey?" (very well, actually) "Does yellow go with black?" (sorta, but you may look like a bee), and so forth.

As an illustration, the outfits below are all pretty smart, but you'll notice that no two items are the same colour.

**Photo copyright to Scott Schuman

That's not to say matching is an absolute taboo. Personally, I think there is benefit to matching, but I prefer the matching to be quite subtle, for example when a tie or a pocket square matches a stripe in a suit pattern.

-The Scandal

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