Winning if you’ve reached this level in our Basics for Newly Bespoke series! In this sixth and final section, pattern-mixing will be the most ambitious to master. More risky than matching colors, the rewards add a rich new dimension to your personal style — further elevating your elegance, confidence and influence.
The first rule of pattern and print mixing is express yourself.
Vary the size of the pattern but unify with color.
Keep the Same Pattern
Wear checks with checks, or stripes on stripes BUT vary the size or width of the pattern. Mind your stature when choosing a stripe. Beginners test waters with a navy pinstripe suit and a fine striped shirt. A solid or diagonal striped tie pulls such a powerful look together. Birdseye & nailhead offer equally conservative aesthetics as stripes, yet introduce texture. Pair them with flat textures like solid shirts and ties.
Herringbone‘s distinctive V-shaped weave makes for a far more eye-catching suit as the zigzag pattern picks up light. Made to measure suits in this fabric appear to be a solid color from a distance. Upon closer look, the pattern is readily recognizable and reveals sophistication.
Choose a Recurring Color
The same rules regarding color still apply. Go ahead and check your notes since this isn’t a closed-book quiz!
Remember any monochromatic combination is a safe bet. Pair two colorful prints or patterns with a common color. We’ve chosen a gray checkered jacket and striped shirt to illustrate our point. It’s moderate… yet pushes the envelope for those who work in legal as well as banking and finance.
If you’ve mastered this and your style slightly stagnates, dare to pair stripes and checks in complementary colors. We strongly recommend this ensemble for summer wedding guests: glen check or plaid suit, blue gingham shirt, even the woven orange tie has a checkered texture.
Try Mixing Three Patterns: All patterns or prints should be relatively close in size. Proportions matter. Attempt the above look but pair with a silk striped necktie instead of a solid textured one. Alternatively select two elements like a violet & white polka dot tie and a lilac gingham shirt, and wed them with a brown pinstripe suit. The patterns achieve fashion zen based on a split-complementary color code.