When it comes to dressing for success, your shoes are just as important as your suit. Wearing the wrong shoes can ruin an otherwise perfect outfit, so it's essential to choose the right pair. In this article, we'll provide you with expert advice on pairing shoes and suits, including the best shoe colors for navy suits.
We'll cover the fundamentals of matching shoes and suits, including color, material, and style. We'll also discuss different types of dress shoe styles and provide you with other ways to elevate your overall look. With our tips and tricks, you'll be able to look and feel great from head to toe.
The Best Shoe Colors For Navy Suits
When it comes to pairing shoes with a navy suit, brown shoes are a classic choice. However, the shade of brown you choose should depend on the occasion. Lighter shades of brown are more appropriate for casual events, while darker shades work better for formal occasions.
For a smart-casual look, opt for light brown or tan shoes in a more relaxed style such as full-brogue, wingtip, or chukka boots. These shoes work well for more casual settings.
If you're attending a semi-formal event, consider oxblood, cognac, or burgundy shoes in a slightly more formal loafer, Chelsea boot, or semi-brogue. These shades add a touch of sophistication to your outfit.
For formal events, go for a dark brown or black shoe in a monk strap or derby style. Keep in mind that black tie and white tie events require black suits and black shoes.
Remember, the key to a well-coordinated outfit is to choose shoes that complement your navy suit and the occasion.
Pairing Shoes And Suits: The Fundamentals
Pairing shoes and suits is all about creating a cohesive and stylish look. One way to achieve this is by adding contrast to your outfit. Choosing shoes in slightly lighter or darker shades than your suit can break up the monotony of a single color outfit and add interest to your overall look.
For example, pairing cognac shoes with a navy blue suit creates a subtle contrast between dark and light shades that is visually appealing. However, it's important not to contrast too much as it can look mismatched. Avoid wearing tan shoes with a dark charcoal suit or black shoes with a tan suit, as it will not look good.
Shoe Material and Style
When it comes to pairing shoes and suits, the type of shoe material and style you choose is just as important as the color. Leather shoes are the go-to choice for suits, but not all leathers are created equal. Full-grain leather is the highest quality leather you can buy, followed by top-grain, split-grain (suede), and patent leather.
The texture of your shoe material should complement the texture of your suit fabric. For example, rougher fabrics like tweed or heavy cotton pair well with more textured shoe materials like suede, while sleeker fabrics like wool or linen look best with full-grain or top-grain leathers.
In addition to materials, there are also various dress shoe styles to choose from, including oxfords, derbies, monk straps, brogues, and more. When pairing shoes with a navy suit, brown leather shoes in any of these styles will look great, depending on the occasion.
The shoes you select for your suit can also impact the formality of your outfit, which is important to consider when dressing for different occasions. As a rule of thumb, the darker the shade of your suit and shoes, the more formal your outfit will be.
For the most formal dress codes, such as black tie events, opt for the darkest color pairings, such as a black tuxedo with black shoes. For formal events that are not black tie, a dark blue or charcoal suit paired with dark brown shoes is appropriate. For more casual events, you can play with lighter shades and experiment with different shoe styles to create a more relaxed look.
Remember, pairing shoes and suits is all about creating a cohesive and stylish look that reflects your personal style and the occasion. By following these fundamentals of contrast, shoe material and style, and dress codes, you'll be sure to make a great impression at any event.
How To Match Your Dress Shoes With Other Suit Colors
Shades of Blue
Blue suits are some of the most versatile suits you can buy, perfect for business lunches, meetings, weddings, and even semi-formal events. Blue suits come in a variety of different shades, each with a best shoe color fit.
Light Blue Suits: For a stylish and sophisticated look, match your light blue suit with medium or darker shades of brown, like chocolate or cognac. The contrast will create a refined and elegant look.
Dark Blue Suits: Dark blue suits are more formal, but you can dress them down slightly by combining them with light brown dress shoes. If you wish to stay formal and elegant, dark brown, oxblood or black shoes can also be paired with dark blue suits. The choice of shoe color will depend on the occasion and your personal style.
Navy Blue Suits: For a less formal look, pair your navy suit with medium brown shoes. For a semi-formal feel, you can opt for dark brown shoes. Should you be heading to a formal event, black dress shoes paired with your navy suit will do the trick. The contrast of black shoes against a navy suit will create a sharp and sophisticated look.
Shades of Gray
Like blue suits, gray suits are also incredibly versatile, perfect for casual events and formal events alike. Fortunately for owners of gray suits, gray suits work well with practically any shoe color, given the contrast is correct.
**Light Gray Suits: **Light gray suits are easy to style with any shoe color. Keeping contrast in mind, pair your light gray suits with dark brown or oxblood shoes, for a chic, elegant look. The contrast between light gray and dark brown or oxblood shoes creates a refined and stylish look.
Medium Gray Suits: Consider tan shoes for a more informal style, or cognac and black shoes if you wish to be more formal. The contrast between medium gray and tan shoes creates a relaxed and stylish look, while the contrast between medium gray and cognac or black shoes creates a sharp and sophisticated look.
Charcoal Suits: Charcoal suits, the darkest option, are perfectly complemented by black or dark brown shoes for an effortlessly formal look. The contrast between charcoal and black or dark brown shoes creates a sharp and sophisticated look.
Shades of Brown
Brown suits are unconventional, and finding the right shoe color ultimately comes down to finding the right tone. One thing to note is that black shoes will never work with a brown suit and is considered a fashion faux pas. The safest bet is typically a dark brown shoe.
Light Brown or Beige Suits: Pair your light brown or beige suit with any shade of brown dress shoes. The contrast between the suit and shoes will create a relaxed and stylish look.
Darker Brown Suits: As long as you wear shoes in a shade of brown that is darker than the suit, you cannot go wrong. The contrast between the suit and shoes will create a refined and stylish look.
Black suits are the most formal of all suit colors. Black suits can only really be paired with black shoes, as any other color will make the final look seem unbalanced and badly styled. The contrast between black suits and black shoes creates a sharp and sophisticated look, perfect for formal events.
Different Types of Dress Shoe Styles
There are various types of dress shoe styles available for men, each with its unique features and level of formality. Here is a breakdown of the different types of dress shoe styles, listed from most formal to least formal.
Oxfords are lace-up shoes that come in various styles. Balmoral and Adelaide oxfords are the most formal dress shoe options with minimal detailing. Cap-toe oxfords, with horizontal stitching across the toe box, are a great semi-formal option. Oxfords are perfect for formal events such as weddings, business meetings, and job interviews.
Derbies are also lace-up shoes, but they have an open lace-up design, meaning you can clearly spot the tongue of the shoe. Like Oxfords, Derbies are one of the most formal shoe types, though you can dress them down too. They are versatile and can be worn with both formal and casual outfits.
Monk straps look similar to Derbies, but instead of laces, they have buckles in single, double, or triple strap styles. Though still quite formal, monk straps are not quite formal enough for white-tie or black-tie events. They are perfect for business casual events or semi-formal occasions.
Chelsea boots are ankle boots that have an elastic panel on one or both sides. These boots almost always look good and work with all outfits – from casual to formal. Chelsea boots are perfect for a casual night out or a semi-formal event.
Broguing refers to the perforated holes found along the edges of the leather and can be seen on Oxfords, Derbies, Monk Straps, and many other shoe styles. Brogue shoes are less formal than shoes without broguing but can still be paired with suits for a business casual feel. They are perfect for a business casual event or a night out with friends.
Wingtips are flamboyant shoes with broguing along almost all the edges of the shoe. The shoe has a medallion toe, meaning a sharper – but flat-tipped – toe. This shoe works better for less formal events, such as weddings, cocktail parties, or semi-formal dinners. Wingtips are perfect for a night out with friends or a semi-formal event.
Loafers are a more casual slip-on style that look great with light-colored suits worn to more informal, daytime, outdoor occasions like summer weddings or brunches. Loafers are perfect for a casual night out or a daytime event.
Chukka boots have laces and are typically a bit shorter than Chelsea boots. They are great for everyday wear but can work in a pinch with a suit if you have no other dress shoes. Chukka boots are perfect for a casual night out or a daytime event.
Boat shoes have a relaxed summer vibe to them, perfect with linen or seersucker suits. They are perfect for a casual night out or a daytime event.
In conclusion, choosing the right dress shoe style is essential to complete your outfit. Whether you are attending a formal event or a casual night out, there is a dress shoe style that will suit your needs.
Other Ways To Elevate Your Look
Investing in a great tailor is one of the best decisions you can make for your wardrobe. A well-tailored suit can make you look effortlessly chic and put-together, no matter how expensive or inexpensive the suit is. A tailor will modify your suit to fit your body perfectly, ensuring that you look your best at every event.
Tailoring costs anywhere between $40 – $400, depending on how much of the suit needs to be altered, and typically takes about 1-2 weeks. It may seem like a hefty investment, but it's worth it in the long run. A well-fitted suit will not only make you look good, but it will also boost your confidence.
Wearing an undershirt is a great habit to get into when wearing a suit. Not only does it protect your clothes from sweat stains and odor, but it also streamlines your entire look. However, it's important to choose the right undershirt to avoid looking heavier than you actually are.
Baggy, oversized undershirts can do little to wick away moisture and make you look heavier. Instead, opt for slim-fitting, microfiber undershirts for breathability, odor protection, and comfort. A well-fitted undershirt will make you feel confident and comfortable throughout the day.
Accessories are a great way to add interest, elegance, and personality to your look. Watches, belts, tie clips, and sunglasses can bring your whole outfit together. For more formal events, cufflinks and pocket squares are stylish and classic options.
When choosing accessories, it's important to keep in mind the occasion and your personal style. Don't be afraid to experiment with different accessories to find what works best for you. A thoughtful accessory can make all the difference in elevating your look.
Remember, tailoring, undershirts, and accessories are just a few ways to elevate your look. By investing in these small details, you can look and feel your best at every event.
Look And Feel Great From Head To Toe
When it comes to looking and feeling your best, it's important to pay attention to the details. While a well-fitted suit can make you feel confident, investing in the right undergarments can take your look to the next level. Underfit offers a range of undershirts designed to provide support and streamline your silhouette.
Their moisture-wicking and odor-resistant crew necks, V-necks, and invisible undershirts are perfect for wearing under a suit, ensuring you stay comfortable and confident all day long. With a variety of fits and styles to choose from, you can find the perfect undershirt to suit your needs.
Of course, the right shoes are also an important part of any outfit. With a few simple styling rules, you can easily choose the perfect dress shoe to complement your look. By following these tips and investing in quality undergarments, you'll be able to look and feel your best from head to toe.