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There's no rule saying you have to match your socks to your pants. Charcoal or black would be fine, even expected. Burgundy, hunter green, and maybe even navy would also work, depending on what else you're wearing.
 

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What occasion? What mood?

I'd buy the matched socks in a store, bringing the pants in. Or buy several shades and return the ones that aren't right.

I'd consider buying argyles, too -- possibly online from the retailer of your choice.
 

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Shoes?
Normally I wear Cordovan Tassel Loafers or black Cap Toes.

Tie?
Normally a Bow Tie.
Sometime burgundy with off white polka dots; sometime rep stripe.

Are you suggesting argyle?
And then would you go with grey and black, or something wilder like yellow, green, and purple?

Would solid purple be way too much, or is it ok since everything else is so understated?
 

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Shoes?
Are you suggesting argyle?
And then would you go with grey and black, or something wilder like yellow, green, and purple?
You have a lot of options with argyles, I think. If you want more colors, something like these would also work - you have grey to pick up your suit color, plus other colors that you can coordinate with your tie or pocket square. See below:
 

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Shoes?
Normally I wear Cordovan Tassel Loafers or black Cap Toes.

Tie?
Normally a Bow Tie.
Sometime burgundy with off white polka dots; sometime rep stripe.

Are you suggesting argyle?
And then would you go with grey and black, or something wilder like yellow, green, and purple?

Would solid purple be way too much, or is it ok since everything else is so understated?
The point of my response was to broaden the concept beyond matching just the suit color, though that's always safe. (But sometimes boring.)

A darker solid shade of gray with black shoes is always fine, as would be black. With burgundy cordovan, black or light to medium brown shoes, navy tends to look pretty good if you've got a blue shirt or dark blue somewhere in your tie. Dark burgundy socks can be great with either brown or black shoes if you've got dark red somewhere in your tie. You can also do dark burgundy with burgundy cordovan, but it can be boring, or worse, the dreaded near miss that can't look right.

You could do an argyle with a solid or conservative small patterned tie, either doing a gray argyle, or picking up a tie and/or shirt color combined with other complimentary colors in the argyle. But that can be tricky, and you may not want to try that at home. But yes, it can be done.

You can do the same thing with either vertical or horizontal stripes, but I'd stick to two colors, one of which should be in your tie. Of something sedate such as navy with light to medium gray stripe.

Yes, other solid color socks that pick up a color in your tie can work too. Purple is included among those, though I wouldn't wear them with burgundy cordovan shoes.

Have some fun. Experiment. Train your eye. Why be dull?
 

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I sometimes wear argyles with a blazer, tweed sport coat, or cardigan with a tie. I guess I would wear them with a tweed suit.

The only suits I have besides a tweed herringbone, is a casual tan summer suit, a blue suit, and a couple of grey suits. Almost all of my suits are three piece. Not many suits, but probably more than I really need as I am retired and only wear them to a play or when dinning out and often I am the only one in the room wearing a suit.

I almost always wear argyles when wearing a tweed sport coat, but I am not sure they would go well with a solid color suit. Lately, I have been wearing socks with clocks with suits, although I started before I found out here what clocks were.

Would you wear argyles with a solid color suit? I am thinking no, but am interested in what others think.

Cheers, Jim.
 

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I sometimes wear argyles with a blazer, tweed sport coat, or cardigan with a tie. I guess I would wear them with a tweed suit.

The only suits I have besides a tweed herringbone, is a casual tan summer suit, a blue suit, and a couple of grey suits. Almost all of my suits are three piece. Not many suits, but probably more than I really need as I am retired and only wear them to a play or when dinning out and often I am the only one in the room wearing a suit.

I almost always wear argyles when wearing a tweed sport coat, but I am not sure they would go well with a solid color suit. Lately, I have been wearing socks with clocks with suits, although I started before I found out here what clocks were.

Would you wear argyles with a solid color suit? I am thinking no, but am interested in what others think.

Cheers, Jim.
I would not normally wear argyles with a lounge suit, except perhaps with the most informal of such suits such as seersucker or poplin -- and even then it would require an appropriate social rather than business occasion. I do agree with Jim that argyles can be a fine option when wearing a sport coat (especially tweed).

Contrary to what others have said, IMO a business suit normally does require matching as opposed to contrasting socks. Lighter suits (such as tan or light gray) are somewhat harder to match, but I would select a shade that either matches or is a bit darker than the trousers (though not darker than one's shoes). I agree with our host Andy that normally socks should match one's trousers, though this "rule" becomes progressively more relaxed as one slides down the formality scale -- e.g., all bets off for jeans or khakis worn in very casual forums.
 

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I sometimes wear argyles with a blazer, tweed sport coat, or cardigan with a tie. I guess I would wear them with a tweed suit.

The only suits I have besides a tweed herringbone, is a casual tan summer suit, a blue suit, and a couple of grey suits. Almost all of my suits are three piece. Not many suits, but probably more than I really need as I am retired and only wear them to a play or when dinning out and often I am the only one in the room wearing a suit.

I almost always wear argyles when wearing a tweed sport coat, but I am not sure they would go well with a solid color suit. Lately, I have been wearing socks with clocks with suits, although I started before I found out here what clocks were.

Would you wear argyles with a solid color suit? I am thinking no, but am interested in what others think.

Cheers, Jim.
Ahhh . . . . ! Socks with clocks! A man after my own heart! If I might, where are you finding your clocks, or are they vintage like mine?

Argyles with suits? Yes, and no. As silly as I realize it sounds, an awful lot has to do with the man and the moment. The same combination of argyle socks and suit can look splendid on one man in one setting and dreadful on a second man in a different venue.

Our attitude absolutely affects how others perceive what we are wearing. If we like it, and think it looks good, there's a much greater likelihood that others will see it the same way. The outfit needs to compliment our looks and mood, and those of the company in which we find ourselves. It's not just arithmetic.

I was shopping at Paul Stuart (Who often happens to have marvelous color ways for argyles.) when a young salesman wearing a formal DB navy chalk stripe suit decided to model the colorful argyles he was also wearing by standing with one foot raised on the first step of their stairway as he posed against the banister. That he was young, tall and slender was beneficial. Old, short and fat might not produce the same result. But his tie, PS and argyles produced a profound and beautiful harmony.

Even if the clothes were identical, were they put on a less congenial wearer in a sober environment, they would not only be inappropriate, but very probably unattractive.

ps

Paul Stuart's argyles of the season -

https://www.paulstuart.com/product_...12&MainCatId=14&HEADERMENUID=1&SUBPRODCATID=0
 

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Would you wear argyles with a solid color suit? I am thinking no, but am interested in what others think.

Cheers, Jim.
I have worn argyles with a charcoal chalkstripe business suit to a conference. Would I wear it to a serious business meeting? Perhaps not, but in a slightly less formal setting, and if the colors are coordinated with the tie, I thought it add a splash of color to an otherwise staid and conservative setup.
 

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I would wear socks to pick up a color in your tie. I read this long ago, and while it's counter to much of the advice on this board, this seems like the perfect place to ditch the "match the pants" advice.
 

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I would not normally wear argyles with a lounge suit, except perhaps with the most informal of such suits such as seersucker or poplin -- and even then it would require an appropriate social rather than business occasion. I do agree with Jim that argyles can be a fine option when wearing a sport coat (especially tweed).

Contrary to what others have said, IMO a business suit normally does require matching as opposed to contrasting socks. Lighter suits (such as tan or light gray) are somewhat harder to match, but I would select a shade that either matches or is a bit darker than the trousers (though not darker than one's shoes). I agree with our host Andy that normally socks should match one's trousers, though this "rule" becomes progressively more relaxed as one slides down the formality scale -- e.g., all bets off for jeans or khakis worn in very casual forums.
I agree with Mike. I reserve my arglyes for more informal business occasions when I'm wearing a blazer and odd pants. Otherwise, I match my socks to my suit trousers; I don't want to call attention to my ankles.

As for the light gray suit, I have one and wear a darker shade of gray socks with them.
 

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Thanks for the comments, my friends. I am now convinced that for me, the right thing to do with argyles, when wearing a suit, is to leave them in the drawer and save them for more casual use.

@ Flanderian - About the only thing around here that is vintage is me. I would still be wearing almost all of the same clothes I bought decades ago except I finally admitted to myself that I would never fit in them again and gave them all away about 10 years ago. It is too bad I did not know about the Fedora Lounge. Those folks are collecting things that I gave to my cleaning lady.

That is why I think discussions about whether details like the number of buttons on a suit, type of vents, pleats, and cuffs being in or out of fashion are so silly. I think one is best served by finding a style that appeals and leaving all the fashion nonsense to women.

Anyway, as to socks, I buy mine from Carroll and Co. in Beverly Hills. I think they come from England, but they do not have a makers name. My guess is Patherella. They seem to go up in price by $2.50 every time I buy some, but I have a sufficient supply for my needs now.

I expect that with inflation, increased transportation costs, and the weak dollar, that we can expect to see prices, especially of imported goods or even good made from imported raw materials continue to increase.

I just looked at Paul Stuart's web site for the first time. They really do have some lovely things, although their prices make me feel better about what I have been paying for clothing. :icon_smile:

Cheers, Jim.
 

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Thanks for the comments, my friends. I am now convinced that for me, the right thing to do with argyles, when wearing a suit, is to leave them in the drawer and save them for more casual use.

@ Flanderian - About the only thing around here that is vintage is me. I would still be wearing almost all of the same clothes I bought decades ago except I finally admitted to myself that I would never fit in them again and gave them all away about 10 years ago. It is too bad I did not know about the Fedora Lounge. Those folks are collecting things that I gave to my cleaning lady.

That is why I think discussions about whether details like the number of buttons on a suit, type of vents, pleats, and cuffs being in or out of fashion are so silly. I think one is best served by finding a style that appeals and leaving all the fashion nonsense to women.

Anyway, as to socks, I buy mine from Carroll and Co. in Beverly Hills. I think they come from England, but they do not have a makers name. My guess is Patherella. They seem to go up in price by $2.50 every time I buy some, but I have a sufficient supply for my needs now.

I expect that with inflation, increased transportation costs, and the weak dollar, that we can expect to see prices, especially of imported goods or even good made from imported raw materials continue to increase.

I just looked at Paul Stuart's web site for the first time. They really do have some lovely things, although their prices make me feel better about what I have been paying for clothing. :icon_smile:

Cheers, Jim.
Jim, thank you for reminding me about Carroll & Co. I used to be on their mailing list, and purchased some items, including a very nice sweater a little over 35 years ago. I think their catalog used to be something special when Dick Carroll was still very much in his prime. I believe they were one of the first in the U.S. to be selling C&J around that time.

Yes, Paul Stuart has lovely things, but frankly, I don't know who is buying their $120 socks and $4,500 OTR suits. Except that it isn't me nor will it ever be. Just visited the Carroll site, and after browsing Paul Stuart's, I feel as if I've found bargains! Who would have ever thought that nice English woolen argyles for $32.50 would feel like a bargain?
 
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