Monochromatic Tailoring

July 14th, 2014

Pairing shirts and ties can be tricky. Next time don’t bother.

Forget pattern-mixing, a stronger statement is to keep everything patternless and in the same color family.

Here are three color inspirations for monochromatic tailoring that are sure to make you the suavest guy in the room.



    You already know I’m a big fan of green suits. I have one for each season.

    Green is a very underated color in menswear. Given my pale skin I don’t usually mess with bright shades like lime, but darker tones can be very flattering. Here’s a few of my favorite green pieces mashed up: emerald silk/wool suit, teal linen shirt, cotton forest tie, faded olive trench, and midnight green wingtips.


    • Vintage Ralph Lauren Sunglasses from Kings of Past
    • Military surplus trench coat (tailored) Vintage
    • Green double-breasted suit
    • Teal linen shirt by Ermenegildo Zegna (vintage)
    • “Tyndall” olive leather wingtips by Johnston & Murphy



    You can put together a monochromatic look with just about any color, but burgundy is another one that is seldom used in a tailored context. In dark tones it’s a color that subtly stands out during the day, and is ideal for the evening.

    Shout out to Kings of Past; the best selection of authentic vintage shades I’ve ever come across. They have some incredible one-of-a-kind frames, like these 60’s era Hugo Boss tortoise shades and the horn/silver Ralph Laurens from the look above.


    • Vintage Hugo Boss sunglasses via Kings of Past
    • Burgundy trench coat by Burberry London
    • Burgundy suit
    • Burgundy wingtips by Ted Baker
    • Burgundy knit tie Kent & Curwen


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    A man cannot have too much blue in his wardrobe. It’s a color that flatters almost any skin tone and is socially acceptable in virtually any context. There also aren’t too many shades that don’t work together. So pile ’em on.

    Here Will is wearing a navy cotton Mac, a faded royal linen suit, an indigo denim dress shirt, and a midnight suede dress boots. If you want to go even more monochromatic you can try one of my favorite looks: All Navy Everything.

    On a side note, your linen suits are going to wrinkle. Don’t sweat it, embrace it. It gives you a little unkempt charm to offset your razor-sharp tailoring.



      Thanks for reading.

      Yours in style,


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      • Christopher_Arruda_LSC

        I’m a big fan of monochromatic style but typically lean toward blue, beige and grey. Great topic!

      • Greg Wright

        Is that Kevin Bacon?

      • tom

        He looks a lot like steve buscemi!

      • Pony Marshmallow

        Awesome photography Alex! So glad Boston made it in!

      • John B

        Photography here is amazing! All green and all burgundy look surprisingly good, but what really blew my mind is that Dan has a trench coat in every color.

      • Harry Fonzerelli


      • JoeFromTexas

        The photography and styling here are fantastic. I’ve kind of been into monochromatic stuff lately (as inspired by some of posts here).

        Honestly, I don’t know how I feel about the model in the posts though. You’ve had models in the past, NIck and Armando, but they were here as themselves, we learned something about them and how they approach their trade and styling. The editorial fleshed them out and made them three dimensional, and that’s one of my favorite parts of the site. Obviously this is a new direction for the site, so maybe I just need to let it sink in.

      • Said Alsalah

        Your lighting is on point Alex, well done!

      • DiiKHeaD


      • David Shapiro

        @disqus_AOd3peMMqo:disqus I think of of the reasons that all these looks work is because they’re all different fabrics. Each item is not only a different shade but, because it’s a different fabric has that much more of a contrast next to each of the surrounding items. While, Express (which I think is the example you used) really would only use one type of fabric, maybe two.

        This honestly has been one of my favorites posts in a while. I’ve been reading for a while now, and I love posts that really show us and help us shed light on different ways to wear staples in our wardrobe, especially since me and every other guy has a ton of blue. Not many guys take the chance of going monochromatic so it was great to see it.

        • Dan Trepanier

          Thanks David. This shoot represents the very early stages of a shift for TSBmen toward more editorial-driven content. Things are going to be changing around here, and we appreciate your honest feedback as we gear up to bring you this next chapter of our brand.


      • Jeanscuffed

        Nice post. Been a fan of mono tailoring and all looks are beast. Nice styling Dan
        Alex you are KILLING it with your photog skills. A-1 sh*t!

        • Alex Crawford

          Thanks Christian!

      • Jeff McAllister

        Holy smokes, another +1 for Alex’s major photographic leap forward (not that he was lacking chops to begin with.)

        I also dig the idea of layering straight burgundy. It’s definitely an underplayed neutral in my opinion.

      • Robert

        Who Wants to be a Millionaire? Where’s Regis? Tell me the backgrounds were only used for this post, I can clearly see why you chose to use them for this particular editorial, extremely cheesy and reminds me of a online MTM advertisement.

        • Jeanscuffed

          Sooooooooo you mad or nah?

          • Robert

            I don’t get the question?

            • TheSaltIsReal

              He’s asking if your butt hurts dawg.

              • Robert

                Thank you for clarifying, I also appreciate the 90’s spelling of Dog, unless you’re from Cleveland, than sorry to hear. Still do not understand where the “am I mad?” Part comes from? I cannot seem to find anger in my question? That was my question? Sorry, I’ll attempt to state the obvious better for some of the readers and TSB comment Justice League on here.

        • Jorge B.

          I actually thought they were quite a refreshing change to use the colored backgrounds. When I saw it on the front page, it immediately grabbed my attention. Didn’t seem cheesy to me. Is there some sort of negative connotation with MTM advertisements?

          And great work Alex, your framing and use of the rule of thirds is excellent. The quality of your photography has really elevated over the last few months bro!

          • Alex Crawford

            Thanks Jorge!

      • ROCK


      • Rams

        Really like the all blue everything and I have done the all khaki everything. Daring enough to try the burgundy and green. Eh, don’t know but a good layout none the less. is speaking the same language today also. All blue everything. And I mean everything,impeccable!

      • cam

        I like the idea of monochromatic and wear it sometimes but I have to have some pattern in there. Otherwise, like above, I feel it looks a little too Express 1MX.

        • Dan Trepanier

          Ouch. Low blow Cam.

          • cam

            Obviously the quality here is so much better but that’s just the first thing I always think when I see those super saturated solid colors. Sorry guys. The pieces themselves are great especially that blue linen suit.

            • TO

              Cam I know what you’re saying.

              I think it’s about the shirt and tie; the rest of the outfits (to me anyways) are incredible and more sophisticated than the outfits a brand like Express would run, so there’s no comparison there.

              The first shirt/tie example in green is the only one I’m not feeling and I get the same 1X vibe or whatever. I think a pale green shirt would have worked better in this case. The second works really well though because the burgundy shirt is much lighter/faded in colour and provides some great contrast for the dark knit tie. The last one doesn’t have the same difference of light shirt/dark tie as the burgundy does but blue seems to transcend most/all rules and just always looks good layered on so I still find it works really well.

              I think it’s real easy to take inspiration from this post because a white shirt with any of them would go fantastic for someone not looking to try a 100% monochromatic look. Great article guys.

      • Peter

        Can’t say I’m a fan.

      • Shawn

        At first I thought these were ad campaign photos! Great photography Alex!

        • Alex Crawford

          Thanks Shawn!

      • Juan

        I’m not a big fan of wearing waistcoats in a darker shade than my suit, but I must admit it worked out perfectly in this situation! I love the idea of wearing just one color in a multiple variety of shades.
        I wear A LOT of blue and navy, but as it turns out, I think burgundy is actually as versatile and subtle. My favorite piece though has to be the olive green trench coat. I’m still kicking myself for not grabbing a vintage one from ‘Nam on eBay a couple months back! Is this one an actual military piece?

        • Dan Trepanier

          Thanks Juan. Yup, the olive trench is an authentic vintage military piece that we had tailored. It still has all the inventory markings and solider identifications on the inside.


          • TO


          • Juan

            Damn, I gotta get me one of those! Great piece and even better photos from Alex, thanks TSB!