Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Wearing Orange (and Other 'Uncooperative' Colors)

Struggling today...not enough sleep, early afternoon migraine, it's been rough. Anyway, keeping it short this Wednesday (and pulling pics from Instagram), we're taking a quick look at how to rock the color orange. Earlier this year, when all the designers were busting out their new collections at the fashion weeks, the menswear world was all about orange as the color of the season, which is challenging, because it’s also inherently bright and bold, and therefore kind of hard to work into an everyday outfit. Fortunately, there are some moves to try that will allow you to incorporate the color in your wardrobe without taking any huge style risks.

Editors Note: Since deciding to write this article, I've noted that this trend didn't necessarily take off, and orange isn't the ubiquitous tone of the season that I came to expect - maybe it is yet to come, but regardless, you can adapt these same tips to other bright colors that you may be tempted to experiment with.

The first route we can suggest is to just tone down the brightness and boldness that make orange a tricky color to work with from the get-go. With a lot of other bright colors, we often suggest washing them out or opting for more faded or pastel versions, but with orange we suggest going the opposite direction, instead looking for darker, over-saturated, 'burnt' shades. That rusty orange color actually works a lot like a lighter shade of brown, and plays great with blues (lucky for me, since my wardrobe has a lot of blue in it already). You can get some great chinos or shorts in this color (try these from Bonobos, on sale for just $38 - and $25 off with our referral link - or these from Topman for something a little less bright), but my go-to move has been this vintage tie that I scored off eBay:
Got this bad boy on eBay for something like $3.00. A new favorite!
You can get a similar look with this number from The Tie Bar (at only $15, it makes a relatively low-risk trend-testing option).
Knitted Silk Tie in Rust | The Tie Bar - $15

Our other recommendation is to use orange in very small splashes, and mate it with similar, but more commonplace and classic colors. My girlfriend gifted me a bright orange tie clip last fall, and I've been loving to play it off a slim tan leather belt and tan suede boots:

Not the best pictures, but you get the gist.
The leathers are both bright in their own way, and when worn with a monochrome blue ensemble, they inject this punch of color at regular intervals - shoes, waist, torso. Among other options, I could see this working quite well with red and oxblood or burgundy.

So there you have it - my words of wisdom for the day before I go nurse this clinging headache - migraines, man. 

How do you all rock bright, 'uncooperative' colors? Do you have any orange in your wardrobe? What's your favorite way to work it into an outfit? Hit up the comments section!

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