I am a huge fan of wearing warm-toned colors throughout the year. However, orange clothes have always been tricky to style since this color doesn’t always pair well with many of the staples I have in my closet. This sent me on a quest to figure out what colors match with orange clothing and I’m here to help you style outfits of your own using this bright and bold shade.
Orange is a warm-toned color that will always pair best with other warm shades. Browns, creams, golds, and warmer shades of green and dark red will pair well with orange. You will want to avoid cooler tones like certain blues, purples, pinks, or colors that bring to mind holidays like Halloween.
Orange doesn’t have to be tricky to work with as long as you know how to choose the right colors to pair with it. Keep reading and I will break down everything you need to know to craft the perfect orange outfits for your next day out on the town.
Why Are Orange Clothes So Popular?
Orange is a color that has risen and fallen in popularity throughout the decades. It first became a wardrobe staple in the 1970s, combining shades of brown, olive green, and cream to create the bold patterns the decade was known for. Given that 1970s fashion is back in style thanks to many celebrities and musicians like Harry Styles, it’s no surprise that orange has become a popular clothing option.
Beyond its association with the 1970s, orange is also a popular color for people who enjoy wearing warm-toned clothing. Neutral colors like brown are actually in the same color family as orange, which is why many people who prefer brown tones over other neutrals like gray may find themselves flocking to its sister color, orange.
Finally, orange is often a popular choice because it is unusual. Orange is one of the less common clothing colors you can find, which is why it attracts people who want to stand out with their fashion choices. It is bold, bright, and will draw the eye of everyone you meet.
Orange and the Color Wheel
Turning to the color wheel is usually a great starting place when figuring out which colors pair well with orange. Orange is a warm color situated on the color wheel between red and yellow. Colors typically pair well with the shades to their immediate right and left, which is why orange works well with red and yellow-toned colors like gold.
For contrast, colors are also said to pair well with the shades directly opposite them on the wheel. This means that orange will contrast well with blue. However, this pairing can be difficult to master due to the many shades of orange and yellow. When making contrasting pairings, it is important that the color tones are similar – warm and dusty oranges with warm and dusty blues, bright oranges with bright blues, etc.
Even then, it’s generally safe to assume that orange will pair well with other warm-toned colors regardless of where they fall on the color wheel. When you start trying to pair orange with cool colors, troubles can arise. Try to stick to the colors that border orange for the best results or darker shades of orange, like brown.
What Colors Match With Orange Clothing?
Despite how tricky orange can be to pair with other colors, there are quite a few options you can wear alongside your orange clothing. In general, colors like brown, cream, olive green, and other warm tones are a safe bet when it comes to orange. Below are our full explanations for why these colors are the best options to pair with the orange clothing in your closet.
Given that brown is a member of the orange family, it’s no surprise that brown and orange pair well together. Brown is a naturally warm color like orange, allowing the two colors to play off each other well. Even different intensities of brown pair well with orange, ranging from light tans to dark cocoa browns.
Consider pairing a pair of brown pants with a white shirt and orange cardigan. You could also layer orange accessories over your favorite brown dress. Mix and match these two colors in any way you’d like and you’ll meet with success!
White or Cream
White or cream are neutral colors that pair well with orange regardless of the tone or intensity of the orange you plan to wear. Cream, in particular, is a great option because it is warm-toned and will draw on the warm tones within the orange. Either way, neutrals are usually a safe option to pair with orange.
Consider wearing an orange dress with cream accessories like a scarf or shawl. A pair of cream pants will also pair well with an orange sweater or blouse. This neutral pairing works well all year long without making you look like you’re dressing for a Halloween party.
As we discussed when talking about orange and the color wheel, yellow-tones pair well with this bold color. Because of this, gold is an excellent option to pair with your orange clothing. It’s a great way to add a pop of luxury and shine that draws out the natural warmth that orange is known for.
If you prefer to wear gold jewelry, orange is a great color to add to your wardrobe. Consider pairing an orange dress or blouse with gold jewelry for a complete outfit look. Just be sure to avoid silver with orange since the cool tones of this metal will clash with the warmth of the orange.
Green is a tricky color to pair with orange because it comes in many different shades and tones. Most greens tend to clash with orange because they are too cool-toned. However, olive green is the exception and will generally pair well with orange – especially burnt orange clothing.
Consider pairing a pair of olive green pants with an orange blouse or cardigan. You could also layer burnt orange or coppery accessories over an olive green dress. Make sure that the green you use is warm-toned and is a true olive color to make this pairing work.
Red is the color that is immediately next to orange on the color wheel and naturally pairs well with it. In fact, red is one of the primary colors that make up orange and will naturally draw out the red tones in your orange clothing. This makes the two colors a match made in heaven!
When pairing red and orange together, you’ll succeed most if you match your color tones and intensity. Pair a dark burgundy red with a dark burnt orange. Similarly, bright oranges and bright reds work well together.
Blue is directly opposite orange on the color wheel, which means the two are contrasting colors with one another. This means that blue makes a bold pop of color when paired with orange. However, not every shade of blue seems to work well with this bright color.
Your best bet for pairing blue and orange together is to choose a dusty, warmer-toned blue to pair with a copper or terracotta orange color. Some sports teams have opted to pair bright orange and bright blue with one another, but this is quite a bright combination and might not work well for many people to wear in their day-to-day lives.
Other Shades of Orange
It goes without saying that one of the best things to pair orange with is, well – orange! You can easily match up your orange clothing with other orange-toned pieces and the pair will generally work well with one another.
You still want to keep the tone of your orange in mind when making your pairings. A dark, burnt orange might not always work with a super bright, neon shade. But on the whole orange shades will pair well with lighter or darker shades of themselves as long as they have similar warmth.
Colors To Avoid With Orange
We’ve discussed the colors that work well with orange, so now it is time to talk about those that don’t. Orange can be tricky to pair with many other colors, but the ones on this list are options you should avoid if you can.
While olive green works well with burnt orange, most other shades of green do not work quite well. This is because many greens are cool-toned, which tends to clash with the warmth that orange is known for. They draw too heavily on the blue used to make them, which poses a problem since many shades of blue don’t work well with orange.
We recommend steering clear of green and orange pairings unless it is a warm olive shade. Olive green contains brown and yellow tones to make it warmer, allowing it to pair well with burnt orange shades. Beyond this, green isn’t a top choice to wear with orange and you should turn instead to other colors in your closet.
For similar reasons, purple is rarely a good choice to pair with orange clothing. Purple also tends to be very cool-toned because of the blue it contains. The pairing of cool and warm tones often clashes and creates outfits that just don’t work.
Additionally, purple and orange are often associated with the holiday of Halloween throughout the areas that celebrate it. People will likely think you are dressing for Halloween if you pair the two colors together.
If you want to find a color in the purple family to pair with orange, your options are limited. You may be able to pair a maroon or plum purple garment with burnt orange as long as the purple shade is very warm-toned. However, this pairing rarely works and it is probably a good idea to avoid it altogether.
Pink and orange are a hard pairing to make. Pink and orange are similar in many ways, but when you get the two bright colors together, they draw out the wrong tones in each other and can create a look that is just too intense for everyday wear. This is why pink is low on the list of colors you should consider pairing with orange.
If you are looking for something in the pink family to pair with orange, you’ll need to get creative. You could consider choosing a pink shade with orange tones, such as a coral or salmon color. On the whole, however, pink and orange are not a pairing you should make.
Black makes the list of colors to avoid pairing with orange for one reason. While black and orange technically match one another, the two colors are associated with only one thing – Halloween. I have never seen an outfit that pairs orange and black that doesn’t immediately bring this holiday to mind, regardless of the time of year you wear it.
Outside of October, when you might want to dress for Halloween, black and orange are a pairing you should avoid. Stick to other neutrals like brown, cream, or white, which will help to accentuate the warmth of the orange while also avoiding any references to the fall holidays.
What Colors Go With Burnt Orange Clothes?
Burnt orange is a wonderful shade of brownish-orange that is perfect to wear in the fall months. It brings to mind the changing colors of the leaves, pumpkins, and apple cider. It’s no wonder that burnt orange clothes have become a popular addition to many wardrobes.
When pairing colors with burnt orange, try to choose shades that have a similar intensity and warmth to the shade you are trying to match. Olive greens, mustard yellows, burgundy reds, and browns are all great options for your burnt orange garments. In short, any other colors characteristic of the fall months should pair well with burnt orange.
What Colors Match With Orange Shoes?
If you have a pair of orange shoes you are eager to wear; there are many colors you can choose to pair them with! You could certainly pair your shoes with an orange top or dress, as long as you make sure that the two shades are similar to one another. This is a great way to wear multiple orange pieces in the same outfit.
But if you’re in the mood to mix it up, why not pair your orange shoes with a burgundy red outfit instead? The orange and the red will pair well together to give a warm look. Add in some orange accessories and you are good to go!
Beyond that, any colors discussed earlier in this article should pair well with your orange shoes. This includes brown, cream, gold, olive green, or dusty blue colors. There are plenty of colors to choose from if you want to show off your new orange shoes.
What Color Pants To Wear With Orange Shirt
If you’re looking for good pants options, stick to a neutral option like brown, white, or cream. These colors will draw out the natural warmth of the orange. Even better, these neutrals will go with the many other colors you have in your closet, guaranteeing that you’ll be able to make plenty of matches any day of the week.
You can also turn to your trusty blue jeans to make a good pairing with orange. Dusty blue pairs well with warmer orange tones, making denim and orange a natural choice for everyday wear. Most denim washes will work well, though we recommend sticking to a medium to light wash for the best look.
The only pants colors you should avoid with your orange shirt are black, purple, pink, and certain shades of green or blue. These require special consideration since most shades of these colors will clash with your orange shirt or make you look like you are dressing for a Halloween party. We recommend sticking to a color of pants on our list of colors that pair well with orange, located at the beginning of this article.
Even though orange can be a bit of a tricky color to work with, it doesn’t mean that you can’t add this bright and bold color to your everyday wardrobe. Choosing warm colors that play on the undertones of your orange clothing is the perfect way to make your outfit pairings, whether you opt for a brown garment, an olive green one, or any of the other matching colors we’ve talked about here. Keep this guide handy as you make your next outfit selection and show off your fabulous orange pieces!