For years, I think we all felt that black and brown can never go together. It was a huge fashion faux-pas to mix the two. You’re either wearing brown or you’re wearing black. Never both. But really both are neutrals and can truly be worn together when done right.
I’ll be honest, it can be a bit tricky as it’s a non-traditional color combination. But there are plenty of ways you can wear these two classic colors together for great outfits.
How To Wear Black And Brown Together
Start With An Anchor Piece
Starting with one main item that can anchor your look will make this combination a bit easier. Whether it’s a great brown coat, or a black dress, starting with one big anchor piece will allow you to easily add and layer in the other color so much easier.
Wearing a black maxi dress? Great, add a brown belt, a little leopard clutch that has brown and black in it, and a nude heel. You’ve anchored the look with a black dress and have sprinkled in some brown throughout to balance it out (more on that in the next tip!).
The same goes for a brown anchor piece. Take today’s look with these brown kick crop pants. I decided to sandwich the pants between two black pieces. Black heels and a black coat.
Balance Is Key
You want to balance out wearing black and brown together. You wouldn’t want to do an entire brown suit with a black shoe. What would work perfectly though, is a brown suit with a black turtleneck, black shoe, black belt and coat.
Balancing it all out so that there’s a good amount of both colors is key to this color combo. By incorporating either color throughout the whole look from head to toe, you’ll accomplish balance by wearing brown and black together.
Skipping The Bold Colors
Don’t try to mix brown and black together in addition to a bunch of other colors. Especially bold ones. Lean into this neutral color combination and only wear brown and black together.
You can mix up the textures or tones, but leaning into these two shades only will make it easier to achieve brown and black outfits.
Use Different Tones, Prints And Textures
Mixing and matching your black and browns will create an elevated look and make working with these two colors so much easier. Instead of chocolate brown, try a cognac or camel.
This always works with black in an effortless way. A full-on black outfit with a camel or cognac coat, is classic. And honestly, one of my favorite combinations!
Or if you’re wearing black jeans and a brown coat, you can add in cream accessories or textures like a scarf or bag, a graphic tee that has a few tones of browns and blacks in it, to bring it all together.
When it comes to prints, this is a great way to blend the solid black and brown pieces together. A plaid that has both colors in it, a graphic tee that incorporates a mix of browns and blacks, or leopard, etc. Using a print to allow your solids to coordinate more easily is a great way to style this color combo.
Black And Brown Outfits
Mixing Textures and Tones
This look from Kendi of Kendi Everyday mixes a few different brown tones and textures to balance out a black and brown outfit. The tan in the boots, the cream bag and the sweatshirt that mixes browns and blacks pull it all together.
Anchor Pieces & Mixing Tones
Alina does such a great job using a bold anchor piece like a statement blazer to work these black and brown pieces. She adds a few different shades of brown throughout her look with her bag and shoes. And using denim to break it all up helps to make this a really easy to achieve look.
Bonus points for pieces that have both black AND brown in them like these Chanel cap toe slingbacks. A total classic that helps pull it all together.
By balancing out your colors, or sandwiching them together like this, you easily can wear these two colors together. To finish off my outfit, I’d probably add a black bag with gold hardware to pull it all together.
Just Add Black Accessories
If you’re wearing a brown dress, you can just add all-black accessories. This is such an easy outfit formula because it usually always works! You can even take this a step further and add a black jacket.
But you really just need one main item, or your anchor item, to be the star for the brown. And then layer on all the black.
Moral of the story, you can 100% ditch the old fashion rule that you can’t mix brown and black together. As you can see in these stylish and fashion forward outfits, as well as classics, this combination is easy to accomplish and looks great.
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