I'm a huge fan of dressing in simple, elegant colors. Largely inspired by classically dressed men such as Cary Grant, my wardrobe is built upon a foundation of white, gray, and blue. But every once in a while, I like to mix things up a bit. Enter GTH pants.
Go-to-Hell pants are brightly colored trousers that signify you're feeling bold and don't give a damn what anyone has to say on the matter.
GTH pants are a favorite of the style elite, but how can the everyman inject a little personality into his spring/summer wardrobe without looking like a circus clown (literally)?
Below is a simple four part formula that'll ensure you draw stares of admiration instead of ridicule.
How to Wear GTH Pants
Choose a neutral shirt
When wearing brightly colored pants, it's best to keep everything else muted. As you choose a shirt, go with solid colors – white, light blue, gray – or a small pattern combining those colors. Give any shirt with large patterns or bold colors the day off. White will most likely be the easiest to match.
Keep the accessories subdued
Avoid brightly colored socks and ties. Instead, opt for shades of gray or navy or skip them altogether. No need for multi-colored bracelets or bright ribbon belts, simple leather tones and neutrals will do just fine.
Anchor the look with conservative leather
Unless you're a pro, now is not the time to get adventurous with brightly colored suede. Go with something in the medium to dark brown range to keep your look grounded. Tan or stone colored suede would also be a solid choice.
Pick the right pair
Sticking with the theme, decide on either a loud color or bold pattern for your GTH pants. Mixing the two is a recipe for disaster. Bright colors should generally be worn in solids and bold patterns look best with muted colors. You don't need red plaid to stand out in a crowd.
Stepping outside the safety net of the usual khaki, gray, and navy is exuberant enough. If this is your first pair, your choice doesn't need to be excessively bright or saturated. Pastels, earth tones, or “dusty” shades will draw plenty of attention.
I have a pair of orange pants that looked fine in the store but once I got them home I realized that they could likely be seen from space. As a result of buying a color that was just too “out there,” I've only worn them once.
Wearing something so infrequently is not at all in line with my wardrobe philosophies. I do plan on dyeing them to achieve a copper or burnt orange color but that's another article all together.
Where to buy
If you're looking to perk up your wardrobe this spring/summer, take a look at these resources and find a color that speaks to you.
Zappos – The Dockers Alpha Khaki comes in a trim fit and tons of colors.
Nordstrom – Look for Bonobos and Vintage 1946 for some good fits and colors.
Old Navy – Not always the best quality but for pants you'll wear infrequently, they'll do just fine.