Many men wonder how to style a blue suit with black shoes. This is a very common question. The truth is, this combination is a classic look that men have been wearing for years (actually, since the early 19th century). Don’t be afraid to wear your blue suit with a pair of black shoes.
Although this combination is generally easy to pair, we’ve provided some style tips to avoid common faux pas, and to ensure that you’re looking dapper. Read on for our 8 styling tips on how to wear a blue suit and black shoes below.
1. Black leather oxford or brogue.
The most classic dress shoe that every man must own, is the black leather oxford. This is the black shoe that is the most formal, and perfectly suits a blue suit. If you’re looking for a slightly more casual outfit, you can wear black leather brogues. These two styles of dress shoe are the classics – you’re guaranteed to never go wrong with them. Try to avoid flat-toe dress shoes, or slip-on dress shoes (these are different from loafers).
2. A non-patterned suit is the standard.
A reliable suit that can be worn in many occasions, is a simple 1-toned blue suit. If this is your first suit (navy or otherwise), choose a plain-colored suit, due to its versatility. It will be relatively easy to match this suit to the rest of your wardrobe.
3. Choose your tie colors appropriately.
When looking at tie colors, you can think of tie selection in reference to the color wheel. Analogous colors like green, which are next to blue on the color wheel, fit naturally with a blue suit. For styling tips on wearing ties with a grey suit if you own one, check out our post here.
4. Drop the tie if you want to go more casual.
For a more casual look, you can simply drop the tie from your outfit. The black shoes will maintain a slight tone of formality in your fit, and will still appear more serious than wearing the same combination with brown shoes. To make the outfit even more relaxed, you can mix in some other types of dress shirts. Alternatively, a color directly across from your suit (like orange), will offer the most vibrance and contrast. Triad color combinations will give your outfit balance (i.e. blue suit and red tie).
5. Wear a white or blue dress shirt for a classic look.
If you’re unsure about which dress shirts match best with a blue or navy suit, opt for the classics. The most classic combination with a blue suit, is a crisp white dress shirt – you can’t go wrong! If you want a trendier look, try out a different type of collar (like a cutaway, seen below).
6. Mix and match other shirts, too.
Depending on the situation, a strong choice may be a dress shirt that’s not plain white or blue. You should experiment with different styles (once you have the basics down, of course). For example, a white shirt with blue pinstripes may be a great option. For an even more casual look, try crazier patterned and colored dress shirts (paisley, muted colors, etc). As long as the colors don’t clash and the patterns are not too crazy (although this is subjective, so use your judgement), your outfit will look great.
7. It’s all about the fit: perfect fit always wins.
Even if you’ve perfectly followed and executed styling guides on how to wear a blue suit and black shoes, your outfit can still look out-of-whack. An essential aspect of formalwear for men, is fit. Off-the-rack suits must be tailored (and if you have the budget for it, we advise custom-made suits). The fit of your outfit is half the battle: a ridiculously expensive suit will not compensate for poor fit (however a suit on the cheaper side, can look like a million bucks with the right fit).
8. Don’t forget the socks!
An often-forgotten aspect of men’s suiting is the socks. Menswear is often very subdued, and traditionally doesn’t allow of colorful self-expression (beyond a couple of small accessories). Be bold – opt for a crazy pair of socks with your blue suit and black shoe outfit! For a slightly more conservative look, choose socks that match the color of your pants. If you want to get bolder, choose some non-clashing colors (for example, red isn’t your best choice). For a cohesive outfit, try to match your socks to your tie or pocket square in either color or pattern. If you want to step your sock game up, check out our sock subscription here!
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