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Guide to Cream Shirts

Updated: Jan 13, 2019

It is always a great idea to have a wide range of shirt colors in a man's wardrobe. Each color of shirt you add into your closet allows the creation of many other outfits.

These days, it is very common to see white, blue, black, and even pink color shirts on the street. However, one of the most underrated color that I think should be more popularized is cream. And today, I will be sharing with you all why cream shirt is one of the most versatile piece you should get for your wardrobe.

To begin with, it is not surprising for most men out there to avoid cream shirt. One of the biggest reason is because it could easily be associated to an elderly man, such as JK Simmons' character in the Toby Maguire's Spiderman Trilogy.

Apart from that, another common reason is that the color generally gives an impression of being rather old and dirty, particularly for a shirt. For them, cream just does not look as sharp or as classy as white. All in all, these circumstances often discourage men from adding cream shirts into their wardrobe.

However, I would argue that these are often just misconceptions. Not only because the way you look truly depends on how you pair individual pieces of garments; but also because wearing cream shirts could make you stand apart from the crowd of white shirts.

In the following, I am going to point out two factors why cream is one of my favorite color for shirts.

Matching a cream shirt with a turquoise suit and a brown knitted tie.

First of all, cream, as a color, is much more subtle and relaxed than white. There is no doubt that it is a better idea to stick with white dress shirts for black-tie or even white-tie events. However, nowadays, under a business environment where even neckties are not necessary, wearing something that is extremely formal like white dress shirts all the time could get repetitive and boring.

With cream shirt, not only could it work very well in summer to keep the heat off, but also could it be toned down to match with your more causal outfits. As you could see from the picture above, I am pairing my cream shirt with a turquoise blazer along with a brown knitted tie. This coherence between the garments would otherwise be hardly achieved with a formal white shirt as it would create an imbalance for the overall tone of the outfit.

The second aspect is rather technical, in terms of how cream shirts are often captured in pictures and movies. Because of the camera's lighting settings, cream shirts could often appear as white in pictures rather than its true color. On the other hand, white shirts often have an over-exposed tone. This is the exact reason why cream shirts could mostly replace white shirts but not vice versa.

The following point is perhaps less applicable for everyone, but it is especially the case for men who has a rather-pale face. Sir Roger George Moore, who is best known for playing James Bond, points out the reason why he prefers cream dress shirts rather than white dress shirts as cream could reflect his appearance better while white would make his face looks rather cold.

All in all, cream shirts are one of the most versatile shirts because it could both be dressed up and worn causally, unlike white shirts.

In this set of photos, I am wearing a classic cream cotton poplin shirt from Turnbull & Asser. Although Turnbull & Asser also offers herringbone pattern for their cream shirts, I would highly recommend you to get a plain one to begin with as it would be more versatile after all.

Speaking of which, Turnbull & Asser is also the brand that supplied shirts and other accessories to James Bond movies, as well as other Hollywood Blockbusters such as The Great Gatsby and The Dark Knight. It is definitely a brand to remember!

Do you like how I match my outfits with my cream shirt? Comment down below to let me know!



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