Outfit Ideas on What to Wear With Gray Pants

What to wear with gray pants

Guys, let’s talk about the bottom half. While shirts offer variety, coming in many colors and styles, we tend to throw on a pair of blue or black jeans or trousers or classic chinos on the bottom. And, of course, it makes perfect sense! These wardrobe staples seem to go with nearly everything! But sometimes we get sick of the same old same old and feel the need to go with something more adventurous. Have you ever considered gray? Gray is a great neutral that can help get you out of your fashion rut. This article will explore the many looks you can create with your gray trousers or jeans.

Creating a Casual Look

For the casual look , let’s start with a pair of gray jeans . At the most basic rung of the casual ladder, you can simply pair your gray jeans with a tee shirt. Surprisingly versatile, you can wear almost any color or print of tee shirt with your gray jeans. Go ahead! We promise that you will be surprised with the print and color combinations you can come up with!

Okay, so let’s say you want to add a little flair to your jeans and tee shirt look, or maybe it’s a bit cold outside. Putting a button front on over your tee will be just the thing. When thinking about button fronts, you can go with a variety of colors and patterns. Think about plaids, pinstripes and solids but be careful not to overdo it on the prints. Gray is an understated color that can easily be overpowered by outrageous patterns.

When it comes to outwear, you can throw on a leather or denim jacket, cool blazer or sweater.

The tee shirt and gray jeans look is a great weekend outfit for when you’re running errands around town and can even work well for casual lunches. However, if you are looking to wear gray jeans at a social event, it’s important to get the right fit. There are a wide variety of cuts and styles of jeans and finding the best ones for you may be a matter of personal taste as well as which ones suit your body type.

The wash and shade of your gray jeans is also something to consider when putting an outfit together. A light gray will work with lighter colors and make for a nice spring or summer look. Opt for darker grays to complement dark colors to be worn in the fall and winter.

Black shirt with a white skull hand

Buttoning Up for a Smart Look

Need to take your gray pants outfit to the next level? Keep the button front, lose the tee shirt.

When thinking about a button front to wear with a pair of gray jeans, follow the same rules as would apply when considering a button front shirt to throw over your tee. Again, you can look at a variety of color choices, and patterns, but stick to simpler prints.

If you want to take it up one more notch on the formal ladder, you can substitute your jeans for a pair of trousers or chinos.

When thinking of the right pair of trousers of chinos to wear, color and fit is important. A lighter gray will be good for a summer day while a darker gray works best for the cooler weather and can also be suitable for more formal occasions.

When considering fit, you want to go with trousers that fit well around the waist, and don’t fall too low or too high. Trousers can be tight in the leg or have more or a pleated look. This will be a matter of personal taste and style. If you are going for a light gray, stay away from anything too tight as this will accentuate extra body mass.  This should serve as a general rule of thumb when wearing any lighter color jeans or trousers.

Another way to dress up your gray jeans and trousers for slightly more formal occasions is by wearing them with a sweater. A pull over sweater can be worn on its own or over a shirt.  A button front cardigan can work well too. Sweaters can be solid colors or feature prints and designs, but again, we are looking for something that does not overwhelm the subtle nature of the pants.

Adding a dress shirt or sweater to your gray pants look is a great way to take your outfit to the next level, but it is not as formal as a suited look. Outfits like these can be worn to work in offices that are okay with more casual attire. They are also suitable for less formal social events or even if you want to take your everyday look to the next level.

Gray chinos with colorful flower shirt

What Color Shirt to Wear with Gray Trousers

Because gray is a neutral, when it comes to the colors that your gray trousers will go with, the sky is the limit. However, different colors will give off different vibes and some may work better for certain events than others.  Keeping that in mind, here are some style ideas for different color shirts.

Gray Trousers, Black Shirt

Because gray is a derivative of black, it makes perfect sense to pair the two together. Black will give off a monochromatic look to your outfit and works well for dressy occasions. It will tend to go with darker grays and give a heavier look making your outfit more suitable for the colder weather.

While black can give an edge to your gray pants, it will also take away from an all over neutral look so beware of adding other neutrals once a black shirt is added. Look for grays and blacks in your shoes and accessories.

Gray Trousers, White Shirt

This look is probably the easiest to get right. With a white shirt you can go for any tone of pants from a dark gray to a light gray. Lighter grays will give off a lighter and more casual vibe and will work best for warmer weather while darker grays will be more formal and suitable for colder weather. However, no matter which you opt for, the white shirt and gray pants look will come across as stylish and effortless.

Gray Trousers, Light Blue Shirt

When thinking of color options, you can really get as adventurous as you’d like. Breaking away from the conventional black and white, light blue is a great choice if you want to get a bit more colorful. Light blue will brighten up your gray while offering a perfect color complement.

Because we are opting for a light blue, this bright spring tone will work best with lighter color grays. However, if you find a blue that is a bit deeper, you may be able to get away with a darker pant.

Other Color Combinations

Black, white and blue are all great color combinations for your gray pants, but why stop there? Gray is a neutral tone, so it can match well with other neutrals. These include, not only black and white, but browns, tans and other gray tones. Darker neutrals will work well for colder seasons and formal events while lighter tones give off a cooler, more casual vibe.

Vibrant tones can also work well with grays. Bright blues, reds and even pinks will brighten up your outfit well. If you want to color up your look but give off a more subdued appearance, darker colors and jewel tones will be the perfect complements. Think of navies, burgundies and deep greens.

All of these colors can also easily be incorporated into patterns, prints and plaids.

Gray sweatpants with a tee and baseball cap

What Shoes to Wear with Gray Trousers

When thinking of what shoes to wear with gray trousers, again, you have a wide variety to choose from and finding the right pair can depend on the colors you are wearing and the style you are going for. That being said, let’s take a look at some shoe choices that might work for you.

Black Shoes, Gray Trousers

Just like a black shirt, black shoes will work well with gray trousers, also giving off a monochromatic look. However, the black will also tend to bring out the darker tone of the gray and may be best worn with darker gray pants as well as black or darker colored shirts.

Brown Shoes, Gray Trousers

Brown comes in a lot of shades including light browns, dark browns, tans, etc. Light brown shoes will serve as a striking contrast to the gray while dark brown will be subtler. You should also consider the color top you are wearing. A lighter brown will be the perfect complement to your spring colors while the dark will complete a winter look well.

Shoe Styles to Wear with Gray Pants

The style of your shoes is also something to be considered. If you are going for a more casual look, a pair of sneakers will work well. Sneakers can be fun with gray jeans and can be worn in a variety of colors from blacks to browns to whites. You can even add a pair of high tops in fun colors like red, blue or green.

Dress shoes will work well with trousers and more formal looks. When it comes to this more formal style of shoes, black, burgundy and dark and light browns will complement your gray pants well.

Boots are another option for menswear and, depending on the style, they can work for both casual and semi-formal looks . Men’s boots come in a variety of styles including work boots , combat boots, slip on, Beatle boots, dress boots and more. When thinking of boot colors to complement your gray pants, once again, it is best to stick within the realm of brown, burgundy and black.

The Gray Suit

If you really want to take your gray pants to the next level, a gray suit will do it for you. Because a gray suit can be somber, it is not the best choice for the most formal occasions, but it can be great for office wear in formal business settings including important business meetings. It can also be appropriate for less formal social gatherings.

When thinking about what to wear with your gray suit, almost anything that works with gray pants can complete your suited look including the color choices and styles mentioned above. A dress shirt will work well under your gray suit in colors like black, white, gray and light blue while more vibrant tones can create style and interest.

While dress shoes are typically the best choice for suits, dressier boots can work with a more casual look. Ties are optional and can depend on the formality of the event, but color choices can add monochrome and neutral looks or serve to brighten up the outfit.

Tips on What to Wear with Gray Trousers

In closing, here are a few general style rules to be aware of when you are working with your gray pants look:

  • Gray pants are a great color alternative to your usual blues, blacks and browns. They can be versatile, making for great casual and semi formal looks.
  • While gray jeans and trousers can be matched with tee shirts, button fronts or sweaters, gray can also be a great suit color working well with a button front shirt and dress shoes.
  • Gray pants can work with a number of colors including neutrals, black, white and more vibrant tones.

The next time you’re out shopping for new clothing, and want to try something different for your pants, think about gray. Keep the tips offered in this article in mind when coming up color combinations and styling options. Gray is versatile, making it easy to match and style. It shouldn’t be too difficult to make this great neutral work for you.

About the author

Jack Prenter

Jack has been fascinated by fashion for decades and spent huge amounts of time researching it and becoming an expert. He's written for many well-known publications and is in the process of opening an online clothing store for men. Jack studied at the University of Nottingham and is now based out of Toronto, Canada.