Complementary shirt and tie combinations elevate a humdrum suit to the next level.

When it comes to "dressing up" a suit, there are several options from experimenting with the varied shirt prints on offer to adding accessories such as cufflinks, tie pins and pocket squares.

A good place to start is with a crisp white shirt, the perfect way to offset an interesting tie. As a general rule of thumb, think about the width of your jacket lapel and match that to the width of the tie.

For most men who work in an environment where the dress code is business, a good range of white shirts are an important part of a versatile and fresh working wardrobe.

To go with neutral colours like white or pale blue, investing in a tie selection that plays on your characteristics such as your eye colour or personality is a good way to make an impact.

Advertisement

Striped shirts and striped ties work together, so long as the widths of the stripes are different. Try a classic striped shirt with a finer striped collegiate tie, perhaps, or for even more contrast, a gingham check shirt with contrasting stripe tie is a great way to add character to the mix.

The beautiful selection of Drakes ties at Crane Brothers, for example, is hard to look past, with the heritage British brand producing some of the best ties in the world. Rembrandt's selection of silk ties and pocket squares are another special addition to any suit, with silks sourced from some of the best mills in Northern Italy.

How to take care of a silk tie

1. Untie your ties after wearing and hang them up or roll up to keep in a drawer. Never leave them crumpled or folded.

2. Ties should be washed by hand with cold water and laundry soap. Hang to dry. Avoid over-drycleaning.

3. Avoid ironing ties as that can cause discoloration but, if necessary, place a towel underneath and set iron to the lowest setting possible. Alternatively, hang ties in a bathroom or shower to steam naturally.

Suits and ties

Main image:

Barkers blazer $400 and trousers $200. Witchery shirt $100. Rembrandt tie $99 and silk pocket square, $49.

Photos / Guy Coombes
Photos / Guy Coombes

From left:

Advertisement

1

Crane Brothers Prince of Wales check blazer $1295 and striped shirt $295. Drakes silk woven striped shantung tie $225, from Crane Brothers.

2

Working Style double-faced blazer $990, white dot shirt $249, navy twill striped tie $149 and tie pin $199.

3

Wayward Heir gingham shirt $129. Barkers striped tie, $70.

Photos / Guy Coombes
Photos / Guy Coombes

From left:

4

Barkers contrasting collar shirt $120. Rembrandt silk dog print tie, $99.

5

Crane Brothers check shirt, $295. Drakes polka dot silk woven shantung tie $225, from Crane Brothers.

The belt check

1

Topman belt $35.

2

Barkers dress belt $50.

3

Rodd & Gunn brown leather belt $89.

4

Gucci embossed belt $525, from

.

Stockists

Barkers
• Crane Brothers (09) 377 5333
Net-a-Porter
• Rembrandt 0800 REMBRANDT
Rodd & Gunn
• Topman 0508 TOPSHOP
Wayward Heir
• Working Style (09) 358 3010
• Witchery (09) 523 1335