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How to wear striped shirts
I am probably one of the biggest fans of striped shirts and love how they can see me through all manner of sartorial occasions. So imagine my excitement when the Charles Tyrwhitt buying department told me that men’s striped shirts are back this season! Hence you’ll find a brand new range of men’s striped shirts in our current collection. Here is my guide to wearing men’s striped shirts.
Five reasons to choose a striped shirt
1. A striped shirt flatters your figure quite extraordinary, because it lengthens the torso and makes a lovely, slender figure.
2. Striped shirts are easier to combine with patterns on your tie or suit than checked shirts – and they tend to be smarter as well.
3. Striped shirts tend to add a little more interest to your work wardrobe, which can be refreshing when you tend to wear solid colour shirts every day.
4. There are a variety of striped shirts to choose from, so you’re bound to find one you’ll cut a dash in. Browse the Tyrwhitt range of Bengal striped shirts, poplin striped shirts and twill striped shirts.
5. Even the most modest of gents can pull off the look without venturing out of their comfort zone by donning a classic white and blue striped shirt: this will look good on just about anyone.
What is the difference between poplin striped shirts and twill striped shirts?
The difference is in the weave. A classic cotton poplin striped shirt has a heavier warp (the cotton threads that run through the length of the fabric) than the weft (the cotton threads that cross the warp threads), whereas the twill weave has many weft threads running through one warp thread, producing a more textured effect.
A twill weave tends to be a little heavier than a classic poplin weave and can be found in men’s herringbone shirts or houndstooth patterns. A twill striped shirt is therefore more durable than a classic poplin shirt and better at resisting stains. However men’s poplin shirts can be smoother and more crisp than textured twill shirts, and therefore smarter and dressier.
How to choose a striped shirt to suit you
The pale skinned amongst us usually have a cool skin tone which can in turn be complemented nicely with cool colours. If you have a cool complexion, choose shirt colours such as pinks, blues, purples and light greens.
If you have a warm complexion such as an olive skin tone, opt for warm colours in your striped shirts such as red, gold, orange, yellow, deep greens or dark brown.
For those who sit comfortably in between a pale and dark complexion, chances are you have a neutral skin tone which looks superb with just about any striped shirt colour.
How to choose a tie to go with your striped shirt
1. If your shirt is striped, chances are it’ll have more than one colour. Determine the most pronounced colour of your striped shirt and ensure the tie you choose has the same or coordinating colour. For example, a blue striped shirt will tend to go very nicely with a gold tie. Of course, solid colour ties are easier to combine with striped shirts than striped ties.
2. If you’d like to wear a striped tie with your striped shirt, take into account the scale of the stripes in both. The golden rule is the stripes in your shirt should be of a different scale to that of your tie. Choose a thick-striped shirt with a thin-striped tie or vice versa. Oh, and ensure the stripes of your shirt and tie run in different directions.
3. When it comes to matching other tie patterns with your striped shirt, for example paisley ties or novelty ties (if you must), ensure they are colour coordinated. A blue striped shirt can look positively delectable with a gold paisley print tie for example.
How to choose a suit to go with your striped shirt
Most suits look superb with striped shirts, as long as the colour is complementary. A charcoal suit won’t fail to look good with a man’s blue stripe tie, or a yellow stripe shirt will look fantastic with a navy suit.
Many scoff at the idea of wearing a striped shirt with a striped suit, such as a pinstripe suit. In my opinion, striped shirts can look dashing with a pinstripe suit, providing the scale of the stripes is not identical. Therefore, choose a wide-striped shirt with a pinstripe suit. Avoid adding a striped tie to the ensemble; as much as I love stripes, even I admit there is such a thing as stripe overload.