How To Wear & Pair Green

The Most Underrated Color in Menswear: Green & How To Wear It

Today we discuss the most underrated colors in men’s wear, GREEN! Not only is green a very versatile color, but it can also be dressed up and down. It can help you develop a signature style that stands out from the rest of the crowd who favors city grays and blues without looking too ostentatious but still keep you looking elegant and stylish.

I am a huge fan of green but it wasn’t always like that. I had to get to know the color and learn its versatility and the abilities it gave me. It was a journey. As a kid I liked green and orange, but I was not a well-dressed kid. When I got interested in men’s clothing, green was not really on my radar for a while, until I discovered the elegance of a green suit, then corduroys, ties, and other accessories.

What Is Green?

Most men have a tendency to overgeneralize colors and just say red, blue, gray or green. But there are lots of different greens. There are emerald greens, olive greens, and medium greens. You could also have light greens and all kinds of different shades including forest greens, racing green and mild olive green. Green is such a versatile color that one term isn’t even enough or sufficient to describe the full range of colors.


Green is a versatile color

Green is a versatile color


How Do You Wear Green So It Flatters You?

1. Green Suit Or Jacket

First up, it’s really helpful to have a green suit or at least a green jacket.  Green as part of the suit can be worn separately with other kinds of corduroys or chinos or even seersuckers. Olive is a kind of green that has some brown tones and sometimes yellow tones and with a mottled yarn it creates more color depth and helps you to combine it with other colors. For that reason, it’s a first-grade choice.

The same is true for a fresco jacket which is also mottled and is a great summer suit because it has a lighter springy-summery color but it has an open weave that cools you down. It’s also not too dark so the sun does not heat you up overly like a black suit or a black jacket would.

Green Tweed Overcoat

Green Tweed Overcoat

2. Don’t Shy Away From Fabrics

In terms of fabrics, you can wear green in worsted, flannel, frescos or even seersucker. It’s a broad color range that you don’t have to shy away from anything. Of course the darker the green is, the more formal it is. It could be a good substitute for a dark brown suit because it has the same level of formality so it’s not overly formal but definitely more formal than sport coat combination.

3. Pants Looks Good In Green

The other wardrobe element that looks really good in green is pants particularly corduroy pants or moleskin pants. They’re perfect for cold fall-winter days and I just like them because they are different and I can combine them in an interesting way. For example with brown jackets, I don’t have to wear a brown or blue pair of corduroys. I can wear dark olive green pants but most people wouldn’t necessarily recognize them as such in the evenings. You can also go with lighter shades or brighter shades but typically these are things you would wear in the summer or in spring. So having a pair of bright green chinos or a light green and white seersucker these are very much suited for spring summer climates or warmer climates in general.

Double Breasted Dark Bottle Green Vest in Velvet

Double Breasted Dark Bottle Green Vest in Velvet with Knit Tie in Solid Burgundy Red Silk from Fort Belvedere

4. Invest In Vests

The other element you can invest in is a vest. I have a green vest that matches the suit which I can wear individually or in accordance with the suit. I also have a really beautiful dark bottle green vest in velvet which is double-breasted and I love wearing it because it really keeps me warm and it’s different than all the other vest you see out there. Bottle green velvet is also a really popular material for dinner jackets.

Bottle green velvet is a popular material for dinner jackets

Bottle green velvet is a popular material for dinner jackets – picture by blueloafers

5. Dress Shirts

Another area where green is hardly ever seen is dress shirts. A light green dress shirt will go well with a madras tie and a brown suit. You could also wear it with a blue suit or even a gray suit, especially during the summer. This shade of green is very summery and springy. If you get something darker like olive green maybe with a pale white and ivory stripe, it is much better for winter.

Double Monk slippers in Green

Double Monk slippers in Green

6. Wear Green Shoes

You can also wear green shoes. Sometimes people go with a darker kind of green or an olive green. I think both can be very versatile, probably the olive green is even more versatile than the regular green. If you wear a belt make sure you get a matching belt to your shoes, that way you get a harmonious look and it’s overall well-rounded. If you can’t find regular box calf leather shoes in green, go with suede because it underlines the more casual character of the color and as a tassel loafer, it is really great for summer outfits.

You could also think about getting a dark green maybe a racing green boot for the winter. The darker you go with your green, the more formal it is. In the evenings most people wouldn’t even recognize that it’s not a black shoe or a very dark brown shoe. You can combine it more with casual outfits that you couldn’t wear with a black shoe.

Shadow Stripe Ribbed Socks Dark Green & Purple with brown suede shoe and khakis

Shadow Stripe Ribbed Socks Dark Green & Purple with brown suede shoe and khakis

7. Use Socks As Contrast

Personally, one of my favorite elements to wear green is socks because you can use it as a contrasting color. For example, when you wear chinos with brown shoes you could get two-toned socks with green and purple. You can have interesting outfits either with corduroy pants or other winter trousers by matching your green socks with them. Of course, lighter greens are better for summer and the sky is the limit here.

8. Invest In Green Accessories First

Last but not the least think about a pinky ring in green maybe malachite or cufflinks or even a tie bar. They all work together and it’s a wonderful color that creates contrast on your white or light blue or otherwise pastel-colored dress shirt. There are lots of items that you can wear in green. But when you are just starting out, I suggest you invest in accessories first simply because they are easy to combine. It is not a huge investment and you can find exactly the right kind of shade of green that works for you and your existing wardrobe.

Shantung Striped Green, Purple and Cream Silk Tieand Dark Bronze Madder Silk Pocket Square with Diamond Motif and Paisley- Fort Belvedere

Shantung Striped Green, Purple and Cream Silk Tie and Dark Bronze Madder Silk Pocket Square with Diamond Motif and PaisleyFort Belvedere

9. Ties Or Bow Ties

When you live in a warmer climate you can go with a bright shantung green or with a bourette houndstooth silk either bow tie or tie. If you are more in a colder climate maybe a darker olive green or something in a wool grenadine will be better for you.

10. Start With Pocket Squares

Apart from bow ties and ties, a perfect place to start is a pocket square because it is rather affordable and it has a number of different colors especially when it’s printed so you can pick out different colors such as red, yellow or purple or green. You can create a really interesting unusual look with our having to invest too much up front. Green contrast beautifully with all traditional jacket colors such as gray or navy but it’s not too stark so it’s a subtle, sophisticated contrast and I’m sure once you invested in one pocket square, more accessories will follow.

Green should not be in the entire outfit or it will look odd

Green should not be in the entire outfit or it will look odd

What Colors Work Well With Green?

1. Green With Blue

Now green should only be just one color in your outfit and your entire outfit should not just be green because that would look odd. In my opinion, one of the easiest color to combine is blue. Whether it’s navy blue, mid blue or even light blue, green really goes well together with it because green is a little warmer.


Green Madder Silk tie with Orange and Blue Macclesfield Neats Pattern

Green Madder Silk tie with Orange and Blue Macclesfield Neats Pattern by Fort Belvedere


Blue is a cooler tone, green is a warmer tone and together they harmonize and work perfectly. If you have a navy suit or navy blazer, a green accessory just works really well and harmonizes perfectly and you can wear all your existing white and blue shirts that you have in your wardrobe already.

If you like more texture, think about a green grenadine tie or maybe a green knit tie in bottled green or maybe two-tone with blue. I like the combination of green and blue so much that I even designed a tie with those two colors.

2. Green With Brown

The second big color you can combine with green is brown. I particularly like dark chocolate brown but also lighter browns work well with it. I love wearing a beautiful Fort Belvedere brown shantung tie with green stripes with a blue jacket. Unlike blue, browns is also a warmer color and they make the perfect combination for casual outfits. Something I really like to wear with this green jacket is a brown pair of corduroys. It really creates warm country inspired look especially when paired with a pair of tan Goodyear welted double soled boots.

3. Green With Gray

You might be surprised about the third color which is gray, another traditional business color that works really well with green. A beautiful green and gray grenadine tie create a very harmonious look that provides enough contrast no matter if you wear a brown jacket or a blue one or even a gray one. Although personally, I would probably stay away from a gray jacket and tie because the gray may be too similar. Two great outfit combinations are a green tie with a gray flannel suit or a green maybe knit tie with a gray tweed jacket.


4. Green With Orange

My favorite color to combine with green is orange because it’s likewise warm. Whether it’s an orange pocket square or orange knit tie or orange grenadine no matter what color green and orange, it will always work. Sometimes I wear an orange vest with a green tweed jacket because it is just beautiful, unusual and sophisticated.

5. Green With Yellow

In the same vein, yellow pairs really well. I like to wear yellow neckwear because yellow jackets really don’t look good. But as accessories, they really harmonize perfectly with dark green as well as light green.

6. Green With Purple

Another color that I’m really fond of is purple. It’s not a very popular color in countries like Italy, whereas in Britain it is quite popular with office workers and bankers. I believe that green and purple together that is dark harmonize really well and create a nice range of contrast that is not ostentatious or over the top. If you want to create a signature style that is truly unique implementing those two colors in your wardrobe will really help you to achieve that.

Tweed sportcoat with with green and purple herringbone tones

Tweed sport coat with with green and purple herringbone tones and Bow Tie in Soft Ancient Madder Silk with Red Macclesfield Neats Micropattern

6. Green With Red

Last but not the least a really important color to combine with green is red. As you know, red is one of the most popular accessory colors and every man should have a red tie or pocket square in his wardrobe. You may think it can look like a Christmas combination but the key is to go with very dark shades or to have another color such as light blue to get away from that Christmas feel. Chance are you already have quite a few red items in your wardrobe, so adding a green jacket allows you to even utilize those accessories more. That way, you get a lot of mileage out of what you already have without having to invest more money. Red doesn’t have to be the dominant color. It can be an accent color in your jackets such as the overcheck in your glen plaid or just part of the glen plaid or your pocket square or boutonniere.


Now that you got a lot of inspiration about how to wear green and how to combine with different colors, one of the most important aspects to keep in mind is that you simply have to try it. There is no way around it and not every combination will be perfect but the more you try the better you’ll look. Don’t be intimidated. Green is a very versatile color and if you don’t know where to start, go with blue and combine that with green, it will look great.


The Most Underrated Color in Menswear: Green & How To Wear It
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The Most Underrated Color in Menswear: Green & How To Wear It
Learn how to wear and pair the color green in your outfit including tips and tricks that will make you stand out from the crowd.
Gentleman's Gazette LLC
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9 replies

    Love the malachite accessories. Have a dark green sportcoat tweed number that is very versatile, and as an example of synchronicity, I wore it today prior to reading this article.

  2. Loren says:

    A questions about olive: what do you call the color that is grayish green? In addition to the brownish green, I have also been calling this cooler, grayed green olive. It pairs very well with a pale gray green I have seen called “gull”.

  3. Geoff says:

    I love green; unfortunately it is so seldom seen in menswear suits or jackets. I inherited several yards of green glen plaid that my mother bought decades ago to make a suit for my father. As a tailor during the depression, she was in demand for bespoke menwear as well as womenswear. She made my father a bomber jacket of antelope suede silk lined that he wore for decades. My father never wore green, so I asked for a suit of that beautiful material. I may take it to a very special neighborhood tailor who does my alterations for a quote.
    I have been trying to find a tweed suit in a country estate hunting jacket style with belt and expansion pleats at the shoulders for sport in the fall and spring. I don’t have a country estate, but the style suites my fishing and hunting/bird watching walks on the beach and into the woods. It also suites the spring weather on Cape Cod; raw and damp. It is the end of March and raining, drizzling, foggy; has been for a fortnight. We have no spring, just a gradual warming towards the Fourth. I don’t think I’d like London.
    Seems like another tailoring project. In the meanwhile, perhaps your article will be read by a buyer of menswear at the local Macy’s. Once upon a time, I would talk with my brother who was a buyer for, I believe, Federated Department Stores. He could always get me ahead of the trends, by about six months. He has forsaken the Ralph Lauren’s of the world for the Jay Leno line of attire. It suites his retirement and his hobby.

  4. Alexander_F says:

    I couldn’t agree more to this pleading for green. It’s especially great as it has a lot more twist than the everyday blues while not scaring those men who usually shy away from bolder colors.
    I’m not sure wether we can count tale to greens, but I can tell out of my experience one can wear it just like usual blues while still making a difference, for instance in a shirt.

  5. John Bracken says:

    A very regal color. From mint green in the springtime to olive tweed, it’s a must in any complete wardrobe. They didn’t name the cologne Green Irish Tweed for nothing! I wear it a fair amount as I have blue/green eyes and it works well. I’ll finish with three great examples of why green says class!

    The Masters

  6. Allan says:

    I love green too. I had a few things made to measure with green in mind, and I find a green shirt to be quite overlooked in the modern image. In fact, I wore it yesterday and posted it to my instagram account (linked to my name in this post).

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