A Black Sweater is the Perfect Base for a Suave, Minimalist Outfit


The perfect peice for January.

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I was looking at fit pics on Instagram the other day and I noticed one with a black sweater. The outfit was simple but had a really minimal, smart vibe that I really liked.

While a black jumper is pretty standard fare, I realized I didn’t currently own one. I went straight online and grabbed myself a similar sweater.

I bought one from Uniqlo made from fine merino wool. Being a thin sweater means it has more potential as a layering piece as I won’t get too warm. Its simplicity means it fits the minimalist vibe I was going for perfectly. It also means it dresses up really nicely and I feel comfortable wearing it with shirts, blazers, and trousers.

What to Wear With a Black Sweater: Outfits for Men

I stuck with a pretty monochrome color pallet in most of the black sweater outfits below. There are lots of black, white, and neutral colors. Plenty of other colors go with black clothes, so you could add some color if you wanted, but I tend to lean toward neutral shades.

Where the majority of the outfit is black, I’ve tried to break up the color with different textures or details. There a few exceptions. Notably dark blue and indigo jeans, and a dark red jacket. Hopefully, these images will inspire your own black sweater fits.

Black Jeans and a Black Jacket

Black Jeans Denim Jacket Sweater
The Brdwlk

There’s something about all-black outfits that just works. I love this combination with the black denim jacket and black skinny jeans. I considered wearing this with black leather boots, but decided the white detailing on the Vans made them the better choice.

Read next: Check out our list of the best black denim jackets to grab one to copy the look.

What Color Jeans Go With a Black Sweater 👇

Honestly, any color of jeans will work. Black is a super flexible shade and you won’t have any problems pairing it will anything from light blue to black or gray. If you go for a darker shade, try to ensure there’s something in the outfit to break the colors up.

An Off-White Jacket and Boots

Black Sweater Boots Jeans Beige Shacket
The Brdwlk

In this outfit, I did go for the boots. But I swapped the black jacket for an off-white one to add some contrast. It adds contrast to the outfit in a similar way to the Vans in the above pic. This is still a casual look and the boots and workwear jacket work well together.

The Boardwalk Style Tip 👇

Adding a splash of a lighter color can break up an otherwise dark outfit. The same works for almost any kind of monochrome fit.

A Grey Suit and Red Tie

Black Sweater Gray Suit
The Brdwlk

The great thing about black sweaters is they dress up really well. The black sweater goes really well with the color of the grey suit, while the white shirt adds a bit of contrast. You can’t see too well in the image (I need a better camera) but I wore a dark red tie but add a spot of color.

Jeans and a Red Jacket

Black Sweater Blue Jeans Red Jacket
The Brdwlk

So far all the black sweater outfits have been pretty monotone, and this often works best. But you can wear some colors with a black sweater—and red is one of the best. This red jacket is quite casual so I paired it with some classic blue jeans and casual black dessert boots.

Beige Chinos and a Check Shirt

Black Sweater Beige Chinos Boots
The Brdwlk

That’s enough color for one article. In this outfit, I paired a black sweater with beige chinos and black boots. I went for a checkered shirt underneath as the neutral colors complement the pants well. I kept the outfit casual by rolling up the hems of the pants to really show off the boots. I think white sneakers would work here too.

A White Shirt and Black Jeans

Black Sweater Black Jeans
The Brdwlk

This is a really classic and simple black sweater outfit. Just pair it with some black jeans and a white shirt for a casual monochrome look. You could wear it without the shirt but I like the contrast detail. You could also wear dress shoes with the jeans if the occasion called for it.

Can You Wear Black Pants With a Black Sweater? 👇

Many of outfits involve black jeans, but you could just as easily swap them out for black dress pants. The colors would be the same, but the outfit would be slightly more formal, so adjust accordingly.

Gray Pants, White Shirt, and Black Shoes

Black Sweater Shoes Gray Pants
The Brdwlk

Take the above outfit up a notch by swapping the jeans and sneakers for gray pants and black shoes. Now you have a smart casual outfit suitable for the office.

A Grey Blazer, Jeans, and Chelsea Boots

Black Sweater gray blazer jeans
The Brdwlk

An alternative smart casual black sweater outfit is to add a blazer and a pair of dark jeans. Finish it off with a pair of smart Chelsea boots. The smart boots go perfectly with the blazer and the understated style of the black sweater.

A Leather Jacket and Black Boots

Black Sweater Jacket Jeans
The Brdwlk

I love this outfit, especially the way the black leather jacket and boots combine for a biker-style look. I wore the shirt again to add a bit of contrast to the outfit. The different materials in the outfit do a similar job too, though.

The Boardwalk Style Tip 👇

The above two outfits are great examples of how seemingly similar clothes can create vastly different outfits. Both involve a sweater, boots, and a jacket, but one is relatively formal and the other is super casual.

Dark Jeans and Sneakers

Black sweater navy jeans
The Brdwlk

This is probably the simplest outfit on the list and it shows that it really is hard to go wrong with a black sweater. Everyone has dark blue jeans and sneakers lying around so it’s an outfit that anyone can create.

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Duncan Elder

Duncan is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Boardwalk. He's a menswear writer who has spent the last 15 years developing his own sense of style, which lies at the cross-section of mid-noughties indie and Uniqlo-inspired minimalism.

2 thoughts on “A Black Sweater is the Perfect Base for a Suave, Minimalist Outfit”

    • Thanks Sam! I bought it in Uniqlo. I had a look but couldn’t it see it on their website, unfortunately. Maybe it’ll come back in stock for Fall.

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