Ask CF: Can I Wear Black and Brown Together?

This color combination is definitely not off-limits!

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So simple, yet so chic.

Welcome to the latest edition of Ask CF! Every two weeks, we select a reader fashion question and answer it here on the site. Do you have a specific fashion question for us? Scroll to the bottom of this post to learn how to send it our way–including a brand new way to submit your most pressing fashion dilemmas!

This week’s short but sweet question comes via CF’s Instagram:

Ask CF Question

How to mix brown and black?

Our Response

Brown and black is one of those fashion combinations, like black and navy or silver and gold, that people seem to have a lot of feelings about. Those who are against it think certain color combos just shouldn’t be worn, while those who are for it believe any color combination is a good color combination. Personally, I fall into the latter camp, as I think anyone can pull off any color combination, so long as the styling is done right.

Furthermore, as we head into fall, brown and black seems like the perfect blend of neutrals, as it stands out just enough to keep you from falling into a fashion rut of wearing all one color all the time; not to mention, it’s not a combination you necessarily see a lot of these days, making it the perfect way to switch things up a little as temperatures start to drop.

So, without any further ado, keep on scrolling to see four chic looks I have put together that make excellent use of the brown-and-black color palette!

Outfit #1

Products: Pants – Urban Outfitters, Bodysuit – J.Crew, Jacket – H&M, Choker – Revolve, Earrings – Mango, Backpack – Nordstrom, Ankle Boots – Urban Outfitters

This ’90s-esque outfit is not only perfect for back-to-school, but is also a great way to test the waters of the brown-and-black color combo, as it incorporates another color–blue–which breaks things up a little.

A sleek black wrap-front body suit is the perfect companion to a pair of on-trend brown corduroy pants.

You can’t go wrong with a denim jacket in a medium-blue wash, as it is not only one of the most versatile layering pieces you can own, but it also, in this case, serves as a way to break up the brown and black color scheme that’s going on with the rest of the ensemble, so you don’t end up feeling like you have to commit to it 100%.

Chunky Chelsea boots help to balance out the heaviness of the corduroys a little, while also adding an edgy touch to the look.

To complete the outfit, grab a modern black nylon backpack, and add a minimal choker necklace and classic ball drop earrings.

Outfit #2

Products: Dress – Zara, Earrings – Revolve, Bracelet Set – Erica Weiner, Necklace – Revolve, Bag – Mango, Heels – Zara

This time around, I decided to put together a look you could wear to a party or special event–because, after all, there’s no better time to step outside of your comfort zone than when you have a big event to attend!

This super-stylish brown midi dress is cut in such a flattering way, and would look so amazing with these ladylike black bow heels and this retro-inspired round bag. (Sidenote: For a more casual setting, it would also look great with white sneakers and a small cross-body bag or fanny pack!)

Bold magenta flower earrings add a pretty-yet-unexpected pop of color to this neutral look, while a sparkly necklace and mismatched bracelet set made with vintage materials are all you need to finish off this ultra-cool ensemble. 

Outfit #3

Products: Sweater – Uniqlo, Ring – Revolve, Earrings – The M Jewelers, Tote – Madewell, Jeans – Topshop, Scarf – Nordstrom, Boots – DSW

If you’re looking for a casual-yet-cute, wear-to-class look that has all the fall vibes you could ask for, then you’ll love this outfit!

A simple brown sweater looks so chic when styled with washed black skinny jeans–which, by the way, are just right for tucking into a pair of cowboy boots, one of this fall’s biggest boot trends!

A lightweight fringed scarf is a fall must-have, and this plain black one adds some texture without being distracting. 

A pair of delicate twisted hoop earrings and a multi-layered adjustable ring are the only pieces of jewelry this look needs. 

Finally, a black canvas tote with brown leather handles is ideal for lugging your books and/or laptop to class.

Outfit #4

Products: Jacket – H&M, Earrings – Erica Weiner, Fanny Pack – Mango, Ankle Boots – H&M, Hat – Urban Outfitters, Dress – Mango

This uber-chic outfit is probably my favorite of the bunch, as it is so easy to put together yet also so cool-looking.

A fitted brown mock-neck midi dress serves as the foundation for the look, while a fanny pack done in a beautiful black croc-effect adds some definition around the waist/hip area.

Timeless black heeled ankle boots balance out the dress’ midi silhouette, and a stunning faux-leather jacket with a faux-fur trim (seriously, I’m drooling over it!) is just the thing you need to keep warm and look cool at the same time (something that can be hard to do when it comes to outerwear).  

A pair of rose gold infinity-knot earrings adds a dash of romance, while a gray wide-brim hat tops off this gorgeous ensemble.

And there you have it: four awesome outfits that prove wearing brown and black together is not only doable, but also a fashion-forward way to stand out this fall. Thanks for your question!

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What do you think?

Would you wear black and brown together? Do you have any more tips on pulling off this color combo? Are there any other color combinations that are traditionally considered fashion “don’ts” that you make look fabulous anyway?

Let me know in the comments!

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