Introduction

Towards the close of 2010 I had been rummaging down my wardrobe (which at the time took place on the bedroom floor). Before long I realised a rather wallet-detrimental trait of getting bored pretty easily. Although some of last seasons pieces kept me amused for the opening months of autumn/winter, I took charge and decided it was time to start thinking about investing rather than assuming I’ve invested.

With the assertion of the A/W seasons came new styles, new trends and new colours! Colour is something that I am heavily influenced by when it comes to new fashions. Although I still pay a lot of attention to unique designs and details such as fabrics, colour is the most influential feature that attracts me.

Now back to my then not-so organised wardrobe, I became disorientated that I hadn’t realised the faux pas of being around 60% summer orientated, 10% autumn, and 30% winter. Trying to build an A/W wardrobe around the preceding spring/summer pieces was a theory best left unattended.

The first thing that met my eye was the bright colours, your typical summer colours which fail to appeal in rainfall. Spring and summer gave us an amazing palette of colours and combinations that were often brighter than any sun that hid behind the blanket of clouds.

That got me thinking that it was time to look at what colour combinations are going to be at the forefront throughout the autumn/winter months we were residing in.

S/S & A/W variations

The key element you want to focus on is toning everything down. Your red becomes burgundy, your blue becomes navy, your yellow becomes camel or stone (you get the idea).

Both autumn and winter have been great seasons to experiment with colours, and we still have a few months left to pull more out of the bag! Some people suit some colours better than others, and by experimenting with dark tones; it creates less risk to stand out like a sore thumb.

I like to start with a colour combination of two, then when I feel more comfortable implement another colour, then another, etc. Just make sure each individual colour compliments the other. I finally found my mantra of colours. Below you will find 3 popular colour combinations for this Autumn, and produced a more detailed write up on my favourite since the onset of autumn, through Christmas, and up to where we are today – squeezing the last out of the season.

Navy & Camel

Navy and Camel. Simply because they’re two colours which have been extremely popular this season, and two colours which compliment each other perfectly! It’s a colour combination that is a great starting block to work with. Notice how with these three colour combinations I’m showcasing toned down colours which will look great, but wont have your friends asking “Why the drastic fashion change?”.

  • Junk De Luxe LS Insert Y Neck Top
  • Humor Chino Pant
  • PEACE CORPS MILITARY BACKPACK
  • Rocky Mountain Gore-Tex Jacket
  • Junk De Luxe Twisted Seam Chino Trouser
  • Camel Honeycomb Stitch Jumper
  • Navy Cotton Hooded Parka
  • Stone hem Zig Zag Jumper
  • POINTER AJS II Grey Shoes
Dark Green & Brown

I love this combination. Two true A/W colours (earth tones which are always on trend) combined to really compliment each other. The colours also fit perfectly if you’re trying to establish the ever-strong military look.

No rules apply as you can see from the looks I’ve picked. A brown bag with green trousers? A brown and green jumper with brown boat shoes? Want to use different tones of each colour? Go for it, experiment with whatever looks best on you but remember to keep them toned down!

  • Brown Contrast Trim Aviator
  • Lavenham Hawthorn Quilted Jacket
  • PEACE CORPS DUTCH ARMY OFFICERS AJCKET
  • Full Circle Norad Scoop Neck Plain T-Shirt
  • Rag and Bone 3/4 Placket Plaid Shirt
  • CHEAP MONDAY Jonas Parka Green Cardigan
  • Voile Snood
  • Junk De Luxe Drop Crotch Chino Trousers
  • Khaki Canvas Satchel Bag
Black & Beige

Another simple but effective colour combination. Similar to my favourite pick – navy and camel – this colour combination uses darker tones. Perfect as a starting block due to the fact these two colours are very common and nearly ever man will have them in their ward/floordrobe!

  • Tie Dye Beanie
  • Grey Grubby Grandad T-Shirt
  • Nonnative Rancher Gilet
  • DENHAM BLACK SKIN VBT DENIM JEANS
  • Stone Cuffed Arc Leg Jeans
  • STONE SKINNY FIT TROUSERS
  • Polo Ralph Lauren Cotton Rib Sock
  • ASOS Heavyweight Cable Snood
  • Black Nylon Clipper Overnight Bag Mulberry
Accessorising

If you’re sitting on the fence and not sure whether you’ll suit these colour combos, my advice would be to concentrate on accessorising. Accessorising is something women do MUCH better than us (like with all things – a fact we never share) and its time to play catch up.

Now what you need to take into consideration is the stand out colour (In the three examples above, camel, dark green and beige). What I mean by this is the less common colour out of the two. If I wore a colour combination of black and red, red would be the stand out colour; a colour in which I’d own and wear less of.

You see accessorising allows the following:

  • A cheap and easy way to add colour
  • The freedom to add individual and personal touches to the look
  • The ability to separate yourself from others and any given stereotype

Accessories are for play and play with them you should. Implement this technique with the use of accessories against pieces you already own. For example you may already own a black T-shirt so wear it out shopping and be on the hunt for dark green accessories such as a scarf to try on.

A colourful ending…

There are so many variations to the basic two-colour combo and there really are no rules for how you choose to wear them.

Maybe add a camel coloured scarf to a navy jumper? Wear a pair of brown boots with some green chinos? Or simply a beige T-shirt under a black trench coat. The opportunities really are endless!

These colour combinations have been and will remain key until S/S 11 hits us right in the kisser. Don’t feel the need to fill your wardrobe with just these colours. Remember the rule I applied earlier? Once you feel comfortable add another colour, then another and repeat the process making sure each colour compliments each other, and most importantly compliments you! For example you could start with your brown and green combination but add another stand out earth colour such as beige OR how about using black and beige as your building block and then throwing in another bold winter colour such as burgundy/blood red?

Once you have the art of combining your colours, you can sit can and enjoy our traditional English winter evenings… I’ll have a tea with two sugars.

Paul