How To Match Your Watch With Your Outfit

Matching your watch with your outfit may not be the highest on your list of priorities. After all, you’ve got the sharp suit, the beautiful shoes – why should you care about what is on your wrist? Matching your watch to your clothes is actually the finishing touch to your dressing.

Men don’t wear a lot of jewellery, as a rule, so making sure that you have a bit of quiet, understated glamour about you is an important thing. Imagine walking into the office, smart as anything in your tailored suit and handmade shoes, while wearing a cheap, plastic watch with a rubber strap!

It would let the rest of the outfit down. You may not know the first thing about how to match your watch with your outfit, so read on for some handy tips…

Types of Watch

Obviously, there is a vast selection of different types of watch out there. These can be broadly categorised into two types: digital and analogue.

A digital watch shows time in numeric form, and typically has a plastic or a rubber strap. These are great for going to the gym, or out for a walk with the kids, but you don’t generally wear one for dressy or more formal occasions.

The analogue type are the ones that you will be pairing with your smarter clothes, so let’s look at these types and what they go with in a bit more detail.

A dress watch is designed for very formal events. It has a thin black strap, and none of the extra complications that watches can come with.

A dive watch was designed for (you guessed it!) underwater diving, and has a metal band and easy to read numerals.

Racing/driving watches are medium to large, and often come in bright, contrasting colours.

A pilot watch was designed to be used in the cockpit, so has a large face and luminous hands, and a chronograph. The strap is generally made of leather.

Field watches were designed for the trenches of WW1 and are small to medium, with a leather or canvas strap and no complications.

Designer watches (e.g. Michael Kors watches) are attempt of large luxury brand to add watches into their fashion portfolio.

Black/White Tie Events

These have never been the occasions to wear a watch at all. Checking your watch was a sign that you hadn’t lost yourself in the magic of the event you were attending! These days, things are a little less formal, and a simple dress watch with very little embellishment and a small face would be acceptable.

Business Events

Gold or silver in a classic style is suitable for this type of wear. A dark suit is best paired with this type of watch, and you should make sure that the watch has a slim dial. You could get away with a dive watch, as long as it has a leather strap.

Sharp Casual

This sort of clothing (sport coats with no tie, button down shirts, khaki) goes best with a large faced watch, like a pilot watch, a designer watch or a field watch. More complicated watches are suitable for this type of clothing.


Anything goes, pretty much! Dive, racing/driving, pilot or field watches would work. You won’t want to pair your smartest dress watch with jeans and tee-shirts, but you can wear just about any of the other types without looking out of place.

There are watches that cost under 300 pounds and are still very good looking.

How To Match Your Watch With Your Outfit

Matching your belt to your shoes is a given, but did you know that you should also tie in your watch strap? If you have a brown belt, black shoes, and some other colour of watch strap, you may start to look a little thrown-together.

Remember that leather complements leather, so if you have chosen a brown belt and brown shoes, your watch strap should also tie in. It doesn’t have to be exactly the same shade, but if you have a light brown belt and shoes then go for the lighter brown watch strap rather than the mahogany coloured one.

You can take it one step further for the ultimate matching of your accessories. The frame around the watch’s face is usually metal, and is generally a gold or silver colour. As a rule, silver frames work best with black, grey and blue shades of clothing, while gold frames are better paired with brown, tan and other earthy colours.

All of that being said, if you are lucky enough to have an heirloom watch then all the rules tend to go out of the window. Heirloom watches are not worn based on fashions or trends, they are a memory of a friend or family member and can make great conversation pieces.

When you’re dressing in the future, be sure to think about the little details like your watch – because how to match your watch with your outfit can really finish off your look to absolute perfection.

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