Dressing for smart-casual occasions can often be a tricky time to get your outfit right. You don’t want to dress too casually but equally, overdressed in a three-piece suit is a bit too much. It’s often not as complicated as you might think because you probably have all the pieces in your wardrobe already but possibly haven’t thought to piece them together to make a complete outfit.
A pair of navy chinos are one of the best items to have in your country gentlemen wardrobe because of their versatility. You won’t find many other items that look just as good dressed up as they do dressed down. They’re the perfect option for summer and winter, especially in wet and snowy weather. Beige is a no-go when it’s raining outside as they tend to soak up any water! Navy is the perfect colour to add a pop of colour without taking over an outfit. It’s an all-round colour as it goes with so many others without being too dark like a black shade.
We’ve rounded up lots of possible scenarios where you might be at some point in the week and given you some of our favourite pointers about what to wear with a pair of navy chinos. There’s a mixture of casual and smart-casual occasions
When out in the countryside, you need comfort and warmth above anything. Navy chinos are a thinner alternative to straight leg jeans but will still keep you warm. When outdoors, you need footwear with a good tread, which is why we love to tuck our chinos into wellington boots or knee-high boots. There’s nothing worse than getting the bottom of a pair of trousers wet or muddy when you could’ve simply changed your footwear and tucked your trousers in!
Wellington boots make the best footwear when you won’t be out for long as they’re not always the most comfortable pair of shoes to wear. Our range of wellies have been made to be as practical as possible. However, we still recommend sticking on some boot socks underneath to keep your toes as toasty as possible! Our funky striped pairs add a pop of colour, even if nobody can see them!
When outdoors, the other important item of clothing is a waterproof coat. In the UK, we can’t even leave the house in the summer without one, just in case there’s a downpour. Buy a style that you know you’ll wear all year long and one that will go with multiple outfits. Usually that means sticking to a dark, neutral colour but reds and blue work just as well if they blend in with your existing wardrobe.
You might also want to invest in a thick fleece to wear underneath your waterproof coat. You’ll find that navy chinos go with most colours so you have unlimited choice in fleeces! Keep the look all navy or reach for a country brown or khaki fleece for extra cosy vibes.
Running errands / shopping
This is the time you need a comfortable but practical outfit. Often, errands are all done on the same day, especially at the moment, so a simple look is required. A favourite item of ours when running errands is a gilet, as sometimes a coat can feel too bulky when running around! We’re big fans of our insulated gilet as it’s super practical, with lots of pockets too. Whilst it is a padded style, it’s not too thick so you’re unable to move freely.
With a gilet, they’re so easy to layer underneath, whether it’s knitwear, a hoodie, a collared shirt or a T-shirt. Whilst you might want to dress super casual (and that’s 100% fine), layering a collared country shirt underneath a gilet gives your outfit a little edge. Especially when it’s cold, windy or rainy, a fleece-lined checked shirt saves you from wearing a jacket too. A gilet underneath a jacket or coat looks far too bulky so by wearing a thicker shirt, you can stay warm with less layers.
Footwear is important when running errands because you might be on your feet for hours as well as in and out of the car. A pair of leather Chelsea boots in tan or brown both suit navy chinos; it’s usually best to avoid black leather shoes with navy chinos unless it’s a formal occasion. Brown and tan leather still looks super smart but without looking too formal.
At the pub
Smart-casual occasions are always the hardest to choose an outfit for but that doesn’t mean it can’t be done. Navy chinos dress up so easily with just a couple of key pieces. As a respectable country gentleman, we’re hoping you already own these items already!
The first staple has to be the tried and trusted checked shirt. Whether it’s gingham print or a larger check pattern, it just has to suit your personality! You can go crazy for colour or stick to neutrals if you prefer. During the winter, it’s best to stick to long sleeves as it’s often cold in the pub to begin with. You can always roll the sleeves up later on and still look cool.
A pair of comfy shoes is also an essential, with deck shoes being a great idea when indoors for the evening. Again, stick with brown, tan or even navy to keep the look cohesive overall. With neutral colours on your bottom half, it means that you can add lots of colour on your top half. Let your shirt do the talking!
On formal occasions (weddings, functions)
Whilst there might not be many formal occasions going on right now, it’s always a good idea to be prepared, just in case anything crops up at the last minute. Having a go-to outfit for formal occasions will help immensely.
You will need a tweed blazer for any smart events and it just so happens to be Rydale’s speciality. Our range of tweed blazers are all in various shades of brown, navy and khaki but with colourful threads running through many of them. Pick out the colour in the thread and match it to your shirt or even your tie for the occasion.
Formal footwear is pretty simple when it comes to men. Leather brogues should be your go-to item of footwear for all formal events. Getting them in a brown or tan colour means they’ll go with so many items, including navy chinos. You could go for a black pair but sometimes these look too formal and office-like. Navy and black can be a tricky colour combination to get right, usually requiring an all black outfit with just the chinos in navy, so it’s usually best to avoid.
As you can see, navy chinos can be worn on so many occasions with just a couple of simple styling tips. We love our versatile pieces here at Rydale so we’re sure you’ll be able to make multiple outfits with your existing wardrobe already!