Light blue is in principle a quite informal (suit) color. And if you happen to have a light blue suit or a sport coat it is usually more at home at more informal occasions. Or you could say at least in occasions where you need wear something that is defined as “dressed-up casual” or “casual chic”.
I acquired the first light blue summer suit to my own rotation last summer. And as I now have got some tan during my vacation, it was a good time to give that suit some wear.
This outfit is actually from last Tuesday when we headed for after work-drinks. I guess you can call them so, even though I happen to be on vacation. Anyway, a few drinks with like-minded #menswear-guys. An occasion like that called for something dressed-up but still casual. So I went for the suit without tie-look. A look which I actually have become more fond of recently.
The light blue suit – option after the essentials
As said, a light blue suit is in general a quite informal choice. Although you can wear it for business purposes as well. And light blue suit is also an option which you should have on your list only after the first four or five suits, if you wear a suit regularly. From my earlier post about wearing three different blue suits you can find an example of how to wear this kind of a suit with a blue grenadine tie and white shirt. But for this occasion I left out the tie and chose to wear the suit with a striped shirt and brown suede loafers.
This particular light blue suit is also quite casual in terms of details. 3-roll-2 buttoning, soft shoulders and three patch pockets. The trousers feature a bit lower rise than most of my suit trousers, belt loops and 18cm leg opening with 5cm cuffs. So even though it is appropriate for casual office days, it is not really a suit for formal business meetings.
Summer is the season for light blue suits and jackets
To put it shortly, light blue suit is at its best during warmer seasons. Like summer. You can also notice that by the fact that most light blue suits or jackets you find are made of summer fabrics such as linen or cotton. There might be some light blue herringbone tweed fabrics which would make a nice sport coat for example but in general I would recommend to go for lighter fabrics with this color. This particular suit is made of wool-silk-linen mixture fabric. Definitely one of my favorite materials for summer as I have mentioned earlier.
One thing to keep in mind regarding light blue sport coats and light blue suits is that try and see whether or not the color compliments your own skin color. In my opinion light blue jackets (as well as trousers) do not really look good if your skin and hair are very pale. Or if you do, try to add some contrast. For example change the white or light colored shirt for something darker, such as dark blue popover shirt. Another option is to get tanned.
Striped shirt – appropriate choice for dressed-up casual
As you might know as I have mentioned it earlier, I favor plain colored shirts without patterns. Most of my shirts are plain white. Then I have some light blue shirts and a fair selection of denim (blue) button-up shirts. Especially for work and business related occasions I consider the classic white (or light blue) to be the best choice in most cases.
But sometimes I like to play with simple patterns. That is also an easy way to dress down your outfit a little bit. The same”rule” applies with suits and shirts – patterned options are always less formal than plain colored ones. For that kind of use stripes are a good choice.
I would say that the thinner the stripe – the more business oriented the shirt. Very thin pencil striped shirts actually may look like plain colored when you look them from far distance. And therefore they are more appropriate for business related occasions in my opinion. I also think that the shirts with thinner stripes are easier to pair with different kind ties and suit jackets. This is naturally because the bolder stripes create one more visible pattern to your attire and that way makes the combining of different pieces “harder”. For example I would personally avoid combinations where you have a patterned jacket, with striped shirt and patterned tie. No more than two patterns within these three pieces.
Bolder stripes and colors
But then there are very wide and bold stripes such as the so called butcher stripe. Or university stripe. And these are also appropriate for business purposes, if you just combine them in a right way. But in my opinion these stripes are at their best when you wear them for more casual occasions. Another good thing with striped shirts is that there you can use color. And you can quite easily combine the different colors with your suits and jackets.
I don’t recommend using plain red or yellow shirts. But shirts with red, yellow or like in this case brown stripes can be very useful. And by them you can bring variation to your rotation. If you need want to do so.
Sum up – light blue suit with brown accessories
This time I used basically two colors for this outfit. Or if white counts, then three. And as you can see, the shade of brown I used, is pretty much the same in all pieces. The brown stripes matches the brown details and pattern on the pocket square. Also the shoes are made of quite dark brown suede. And in my opinion light blue color actually works best with darker shades of brown. It’s simple and it is quite safe to pair these two shades. And it works. It works in small scale, if you combine your white shirt with dark brown shantung tie and a pocket square with light blue details. But I dare to say that it works also with bigger pieces, as when you combine a light blue suit with brown accessories.