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How To Wear A Purple Tie

Purple paisley tie displayed on a white dress shirt

Purple Is Powerful

We’re saying it: Purple is neglected when it comes to menswear. Many men see it as too feminine and don’t wear it. But gentlemen, you have it wrong. Purple is powerful, especially in men’s attire. So let’s take a closer look at the color purple and how to wear it on your tie.

A Brief History Of Purple

Think about the color purple. Does royalty come to mind? Throughout history, the color purple was often worn by royals. And royals only. When purple dye was first created (an excruciating process made from a species of sea snail) it was very expensive. So expensive that the only people who could afford the dye was royalty. During the Elizabethan era, Queen Elizabeth I continued this purple exclusivity and forbid anyone outside of the royal family from wearing the color. Eventually, more affordable synthetic purple dye was created and the rest of us commoners began wearing purple.

What Exactly Is Purple?

Purple is a combination of red and blue and it comes in a lot of shades. Some are light, some are dark, some are more pink, more red, more blue and even more brown. The most common purple colors are your standard purple and dark purple. We often see these colors used in sports team colors, school colors and company logos. Some purples are more popular in different seasons. Lavender, a light pastel purple, is a staple of spring and Easter. Eggplant purple, a dark red-tone purple, is more popular in fall and winter. We see a lot of different purple shades in food, too. Think about berries. Despite the word black in blackberries, this berry is really a deep purple color. Raspberries are a reddish shade of purple, as are mulberries. Purple shades are found in a lot of red wines, too. Merlot, cabernet, pinot. These are all red-tone purples.

Shades of purple swatches

Purple comes in many shades. Some of light, some are dark, some are more red, more blue and even more brown.

Wearing Purple Ties

Let’s get into wearing purple ties. If you’re new to wearing purple, don’t worry, we’ll ease you into it. There are 4 steps to wearing purple ties.

1. Find Your Purple

So first things first, find a purple you like. As we discussed above, there are a lot of purple shades. You personally might not like every one out there, and that’s okay. There are enough purples that we’re confident you’ll find one or two you like. So find that shade and keep it in mind.

2. Find A Tie

Now that you know which purple(s) you like, go find a tie or two in that color. Head on over to the purple tie collection at TieMart and browse for ties in those colors. This could be a solid tie or a pattern tie. As far as tie style, choose what you’re comfortable in. If you’re a self-tie bow tie guy, look for a purple self-tie bow tie. Like traditional ties? Look at standard ties. Prefer a more modern tie? Narrow, slim or skinny ties are likely your thing.

Eggplant Purple Silk Extra Long Necktie

3. What To Wear With Purple

Okay, now it’s time to wear that purple tie. As you ease into wearing purple, keep the rest of your outfit neutral. Select a solid shirt in white. If you’re wearing purple to the office or more casually, go with navy, gray or brown for your pants, suit or sport coat. Purple and black can be worn together, but it’s typically a more formal look. If you’re wearing a pocket square with any of these colors, it should either match the tie exactly or be solid white.

4. Enhance Your Outift

After you’ve been wearing purple regularly with those neutral colors and have the hang of it, you can start adding small touches of other colors into your look. You have to be careful here though. While purple can be worn with other colors, over do it and you will look clown like. So to start, keep wearing a suit, sport coat and/or pants in those neutral colors. As for your dress shirt, a subtle check or striped pattern with hints of color can look great with a purple tie. Look for a shirt with colors that complement your purple tie. Perhaps a similar tone of purple (either lighter or darker) or a blue.

Other colors can be added cautiously into your accessories, too. (A pocket square, lapel pin, tie bar, socks, etc.) For small items like these, we like to look at the color wheel for inspiration. The least extreme colors to add are those next to purple on the color wheel, known as an analogous color scheme. These are red and blue. Reds and blues blend with purple, and a red tipped white pocket square or blue tie bar can really pull a look together. Just remember to find accessories in the same tone as your purple tie. (Darker purples will look better with darker blues and reds, etc.)

If you want something a little more bold, look to complementary colors on the color wheel. For purple, this is yellow, orange and green. Again, be cautious adding these colors with your purple tie, but they can look quite sharp when done correctly. So, first, pick one accessory to wear in these colors, and only one. (A yellow pocket square, green tie bar AND orange socks is too much. Select one of these.) Then, find that accessory in the same tone as your tie. Wearing an eggplant purple tie? Burnt orange complements this deep purple. Lavender tie? Stick to pale yellow accessories.

Orange Tipped White Pocket Square

If you made it this far, you’re now a purple pro. Go find yourself a purple tie and start wearing it. It won’t be long until someone compliments your new look.

About TieMart

TieMart is an online retailer of men’s neckties, bow ties and other accessories. A wide selection of pattern ties are available at TieMart, including popular paisley ties for weddings, traditional plaid ties for the office and collegiate two-color striped ties for graduation or school uniforms. Send in a picture and you can even create a custom photo tie. TieMart ties are affordable and ship quickly from their Midwest location.


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We are a family-run tie company based in Illinois. We've been in the biz since the late 90s, so by now we know a thing or two about men's fashion and accessories. Tiepedia is our lil spot on the web to share that knowledge with you.