Have a Great Plaid or Windowpane Jacket but Don’t Know What to Wear with It?
Yikes – this (even in black and white) on the left is a great example of what not to wear. Each of the components individually are great – please gentlemen, don’t be afraid of pattern – even a big windowpane like this sport coat. Pattern and color gives you more presence – you can stand out from the crowd and have more of a personal style.
So pattern is good. But just not ALL patterns together.
The illustration on the left is wrong because there are three strong windowpane patterns, the shirt and tie is of similar scale, and all of similar color (we assume).
The illustration on the right works because the windowpane jacket is not fighting for attention – it can stand on it’s own balanced with a solid shirt and a dark tie.
This is not your only option with a great patterned jacket. I like the harmony created by wearing a plaid shirt with a plaid or windowpane jacket – but the trick is to ensure they are substantially different.
The shirt could have a faint tone on tone window pane pattern to mimic the sport coat like this blue:
or it could have a bolder windowpane if the scale of the shirt were different (smaller) than the jacket, like this one: or it could just be a more subtle version with colors from the jacket, like this:
or it could just be very small, like this:
If we were together and I was matching for you, I would pull the more subtle plaid shirt patterns with the “louder” jacket patterns. In the case of this bold, vibrant great jacket, Anything under this jacket will need to be subtle so as not to overwhelm.
A windowpane or plaid such as this grey glen plaid is so soft that it really just functions as a “solid with interest”. That is why the pink stripe shirt and tie works with it.
Wrapping up the concepts presented, you don’t have to be afraid to buy (or wear) a great plaid jacket. When considering the two additional style elements you are now adding to it – the shirt and the tie; choose the strength and boldness of the pattern size, color and scale to be more subtle to go with the bolder jacket, and bolder to go with the more subtle jacket. Try and tie in at least one color in the jacket to something underneath. And enjoy having a great style day!
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