While not the most common colour in menswear, grey can be a versatile and flattering tone that can complement a range of looks. If you’re looking for a sleek alternative to a classic white shirt a grey one might be the answer, and in this simple guide we’ll go through some of the various ways you can pull one off.
Tones of Grey
Grey can be a tricky colour to pin down, mainly because there are so many shades of it. One shade of grey can give off a completely different vibe to the other, so don’t assume that all tones are going to work the same way. Darker greys can be used for more formal looks and are a good alternative to black, giving you a less intense, classically formal look.
Lighter greys, on the other hand, give off a cooler, more relaxed look, and make a good alternative to white, with their clean and bright tone. Different style shirts can also change up the vibe of the look, but colour is one of the first things to focus on.
Grey Short Sleeve Shirts for Men
Men’s shirts come in all shapes and sizes, and sometimes cutting down the length of your sleeves can give you a clean, relaxed look that’s ideal for warmer weather or more casual looks. In this case, the tone of grey doesn’t matter too much, and whether you go for a dark or light shade, the short sleeved shape will keep the shirt looking casual.
However different shades of grey can be used to work with different outfits, so keep this in mind when you’re choosing your shirt. A slim fit short sleeved shirt in a light grey is going to give a streamlined, relaxed look, and is good to pair with cooler looks. Try matching it with a pair of navy twill shorts and some blue boat shoes, emphasising the summery shapes and colours, and throwing over a denim jacket if you want a layered look.
Dark grey short sleeved shirts are often used for more formal looks because of their colouring, but when you’re dealing with short sleeves it’s generally better to stick to casual outfits. Dark grey goes with a lot, but to give a uniformed, put together look that doesn’t veer into top heavy waters, you should stick to dark colours for the bottom half of your outfit.
Navy jeans are a good choice as they’ll give a less heavy finish than black jeans, keeping things more casual without looking disordered. Finish off with some versatile black trainers and you’ve got an easy everyday outfit that’s great for a range of seasons.
Grey Oxford Shirts for Men
A good Oxford shirt is a staple in most men’s wardrobes, however, they’re usually in a white colour rather than a grey. White Oxford shirts are great for throwing on with a range of outfits, but grey ones can be equally versatile, and depending on what kind of look you’re going for, you can create a clean, fresh outfit with one. If you want to go for a casual look opt for a men’s slim fit shirt in a light, more blue toned grey. This will keep the tone clean and easier to match with more casual pieces, such as light jeans and chinos.
Because the Oxford shirt has a fairly structured style, it can be harder to match it with more relaxed pieces. Careful styling however, can result in a balanced, smart casual look that’s great for the everyday, and gives you a comfortable, tailored finish. Try matching your shirt with some slim fit jeans, white T-shirt and brown chukka boots. The cool tone colours will keep things light and clean, while the open shirt will ensure your outfit stays looking casual.
Oxford shirts are of course great at matching with a formal look and will go with a range of coloured suits, giving a sleek, cool vibe to the classic combination. Make sure you choose a quality 100% cotton shirt if you’re going to go for a smart look, as a cheap material will instantly make the outfit look and feel more casual.
It’s just a basic rule that cheap formal shirts never look great. Grey goes with a lot of colours, but a navy suit and grey shirt is an ideal combination, giving a cool, complementary tone that’s ideal for pretty much every season.
Choose a slim fit suit, making sure it fits you perfectly, and finish off with a pair of black leather brogues. The black shoes will help ground the outfit and ensure you get a formal finish. You can go with a high shine patent leather, but this can distract from the cool colour combination, and is usually better suited to a simple black suit and white shirt pairing.
Grey Check Shirts/Patterned Shirts
Check or patterned shirts are popular because of the added texture and dimension they can give a look. Even a small, un-invasive print can be enough to make an impact on an outfit, so if you’re looking to create more of an interesting vibe with something usually fairly restricted, like a formal look, a patterned shirt can be your answer.
Pairing one with a simple pair of navy trousers and a matching blazer can be enough to create a work appropriate outfit that has more of a personal twist to it. Changing up your footwear can impact the overall vibe, with some clean white trainers giving a smart casual look to the outfit, and a pair of lace-up brogues keeping things sleek and formal.
Men’s Collarless Shirt
Collarless shirts, or grandad collar shirts, are an alternative version of the traditional collared shirts and offers a smooth, round neck collar that’s great for more smart casual looks. Although you can pair a grandad collar shirt with formal looks, it’s best to avoid matching it with a full suit, as it’s obviously impossible to pair a collarless shirt with a tie.
You can however, match it up with a blazer to give a twist to a classic outfit, and keeping the look slim or skinny fit ensures that you stay on the unconventional side. You can also finish off with some patterned leather shoes rather than plain, unpatterned ones to achieve a more textured, interesting finish.
You can also create a casual look with a grandad collar shirt, with the streamlined collar giving a contemporary twist to a simple outfit. A linen shirt in a grandad collar design can give you more of a relaxed vibe, with the soft material providing a light, casual look.
Linen is also great for the summer months, keeping you fresh and cool even in high temperatures, and can be paired with everything from jeans to laid-back chinos. So if you’re getting ready for a summer day out, consider a linen shirt. Grab some comfortable slim fit jeans in an indigo colour, then pair them with some black Chelsea boots for an understated, yet sleek finish.
What to Wear with a Grey Shirt
- Keep the shade of grey in mind when you’re choosing your shirt, opting for a light tone if you prefer casual looks and a darker shade for more formal outfits.
- Short sleeved shirts can easily be used in casual outfits, while longer sleeved ones have a more formal finish.
- The Oxford style shirt is a wardrobe staple, and in a grey colour is equally as versatile for a casual look.
- Make sure you choose a good quality 100% cotton shirt for a smart look, as cheap fabric will make the outfit more casual.
- For a casual twist on a classic look, opt for a grandad collar shirt for a unique finish.
On That Note
Grey shirts can easily be worn on a daily basis. The ability to mold into both formal and casual looks, and coming in a wide range of designs, textures and prints from cotton Oxford shirts in light grey, to checked short sleeved numbers, grey shirts have an ability to work with different colours, pieces and styles. Make sure you pick a tone that works best for your chosen outfit, with dark shades working well for formal looks, and lighter tones assuming a more laid back, casual look. Whatever tone or shade you choose, grey shirts are able to flatter pretty much any body type – so having a few in your wardrobe is never a bad idea.
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