How to Wear The Right Color For Your Skin Tone
How to Dress Like a 2 Tone Ska Fan
Most modern ska fashion can be traced back to the 1979 ska revival that was headed by 2 Tone Records and bands like The Specials and Madness. Fans of this music style were named rude boys and rude girls after the Jamaican street gangsters of the 1960s that were known for their eloquent sense of style. Dressing 2-tone ska is a unique fashion choice that crosses mod and skinhead to create an unique mix of casual and elegant, with a penchant for borrowing from teddy boy accessories that were popular among British subculture in the Edwardian period
Wear T-shirts for a more casual, laid-back style.If you prefer T-shirts without designs, stick with plain black or white—even the V-neck style if that's your thing! If you like to be a bit more eye-catching, wear band shirts from 2-tone bands like The Specials, Madness, The Beat, The Selector, and Bad Manners.
- Pair your white T-shirt with checkered black and white braces and a hat with the same pattern.
- For band ideas, look at the 1960s ska artists that influenced popular 2-tone bands. Check out Prince Buster and other artists on the Trojan Records label.
Stick with polos if you like a hint of class in your outfit.Polos are commonly black, white, and darker colors like navy blue and burgundy. The most popular brands are Lambretta and Fred Berry, but be wary—the latter is pretty expensive.
- Combine a white polo with a black trilby hat and dark slacks.
Wear button-down shirts for a nice balance of casual and classy.The most common button-down shirts are from the British clothing brand Ben Sherman, especially those with checker patterns, clock colors, and flannel. You can also wear short-sleeve button-downs in the summer.
- Pair your button-down shirt with slacks for a great match. For example, beige or gray slacks and a button-down shirt with a flannel black and white pattern looks great.
- If you're going with a button-down shirt, try and find one with pearl-decorated buttons to create a vintage feel. Front pockets are also a great addition.
Try wearing a low waistcoat or Harrington jacket during cooler months.Waistcoats are sleeveless upper-body clothing pieces that are usually worn over dress shirts or plain T-shirts. The iconic Harrington jacket with plaid lining is another option. For the winter, try wearing a plain V-neck sweater.
- Layer your waistcoat over a band shirt or plain black or white shirt.
- Wear jackets and waistcoats in black, white, or a black and white checker pattern.
- If you wear a 3-button dress jacket, keep the bottom button undone for style.
Selecting Bottoms and Shoes
Stick with slacks and skinny jeans for cooler weather.If you wear slacks, gray, black, and beige are the most common colors for the 2-tone style. If you prefer to wear jeans, skinny jeans—also known as drainpipe trousers—are your best bet. Whether you wear slacks or skinny jeans, cuffed pants are the most common finish. This is when the fabric at the bottom of the pant leg is turned upward on the outside as opposed to folded inside (this is called hemmed).
- Look for skinny leans that have rips and holes in them, or just make your own!
- If you wear skinny jeans, avoid wearing them with Converse sneakers—this is more in line with the New York punk scene.
- Wear 1960s black ski pants for a unique feminine twist on leg apparel.
Look for plain or multi-colored tight pencil skirts for warmer weather.In the ska scene, pencil skirts are typically worn above the knee, but some people use longer styles. Choose whatever is most comfortable. Checkered and dogtooth patterns with black and white colors are the most common. You'll also find lots of black and white designs, such as white skirts with black writing or black skirts with white cartoon designs. You have lots of freedom to get creative, so do whatever you want!
- Search for 2-tone pencil skirts from independent artists and designers on places like RedBubble for tons of options.
- Combine your pencil skirt with plain or checkered tights.
- Swap your skirt for a checkered dress or flannel shorts for comfy, warm-weather alternatives.
Wear some polished, classy shoes to inject some classy flair into your outfit.Pick up some brogues, loafers, Doc Marten brand eight-hole boots, or Gibson brand shoes. In terms of color, plain black, oxblood, or cherry red is best. The best feminine variations of the above are winkle pickers with heels.
- Try monkey boots, which used to be a skinhead fashion.
- Pair high heels with white socks to show them off.
Mixing Patterns and Colors
Try checkered and dogtooth patterns for the classic 2-tone look.Most of these patterns are themed black and white, but you are really free to do what you want. Pairing the same dogtooth or checkered pattern with your accessories and bottom is a good rule. In these cases, wear a solid-color top that matches one of the pattern's colors.
- Wear a checkered skirt, checkered tie, and checkered hat of your choice—all in black and white patterns. For your shirt, wear a solid black V-neck or even a band shirt with a black and white theme.
Wear solid black and white clothing for a more modest style.For a nicely coordinated outfit that isn't as dazzling, follow a black and white theme without patterns. For example, wear a solid white V-neck, black braces, and a solid black houndstooth hat.
- Add one patterned checkered or dogtooth item—like a tie, pin, or badge—for a bit of flair.
Experiment with darker colors to create a unique appearance.Although black and white is the standard for 2-tone, this makes standing out even easier. Red is probably the most common color outside of black and white, although darker colors of any shade can work! A burgundy tie, a black trilby hat with a dark green band, and maroon shoes are great examples.
- Try grape and burgundy colors for your polos and jackets for a nice touch.
Add a cap with an eye-catching pattern to top off your outfit.Wear oversized houndstooth caps, pork pie hats with a shallow brim, a bowler, or a trilby hat. Hats go great with simple outfits as well as with jackets.
- Wear a houndstooth cap with a jacket or a tribly hat with a pattern that matches your braces.
Wear checkered black and white braces to match other accessories.Wearing black and white braces, also known as suspenders, is a common ska style. These are leather straps that go over your shoulders and connect to your pants. Often, they work best when they match hats, belts, and buttons. Braces come in Y or X shapes—choose whatever suits your style!
- Choose red braces for a more brash style.
Wear a tie to add some flair to a simple outfit.Stick to the early-1960s skinny style with black and white patterns. Ties are best when you're wearing just one shirt, such as a T-shirt or even a polo. Top it off with a tribly hat and you're good to go!
- Swap your braces for a tie to switch up your outfit!
Wear some belts and wallets that match your tie's design.Wear a plain black or white belt, or find one with a checkered pattern. If you like to stand out, try a piano belt or studded belt. For wallets, you'll find similar checkered and black and white patterns common in ska shirts.
- Try wearing a red checkered belt if you're wearing red braces.
Attach retro pins and buttons to your jacket or backpack to add character.You can wear pins and buttons anywhere, but they look best on jackets and backpacks. Most people like ones that are related to music or politics, but anything goes! Black, white, and red are the most common colors.
- Look for pins and buttons with phrases like "I love ska!" if you're not into the political stuff.
- Pair a black and white pin with a black Harrington jacket and a checkered houndstooth hat.
Top your outfit off with some shades for extra swagger.If you like sunglasses, wayfarers or wraparound shades and the most common in the 2-tone fashion world. Black is the most common color, although matching the color to your tie or braces always works.
- Wear your shades with a V-neck T-shirt, checkered braces, and a checkered trilby hat.
- Black and white look great together, especially in a checker pattern.
- Learn to skank, which is the main dance associated with 2-tone ska.
- Wear your hair short. For men, a short crop or flat-top is common.
Video: Under The Influence: 2 Tone Ska
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