Indigo dye has been around for centuries. The Greeks and Romans viewed it as a luxury item, and the deep blue compound was prized by cultures in India, Japan, and West Africa through the years. Most folks today know indigo, in its synthetic form, because it provides the blue in blue jeans. But there is no reason that a color as cool and versatile as indigo needs to be limited to denim.
Menswear designers seem to agree, because it has become one of the most popular colors in collections this spring and summer. Part of what makes indigo so great, is that it’s dark so it still comes across as polished, but it’s not as dour as black, because, hey, it’s summer, and who wants to walk around baking in an all black outfit. The other nice thing is that the dye breaks in over time and takes on a distinct patina that makes it your own.
To help you pull off this color, we gathered together some of the best indigo gear out this season in our latest Lookbook.
1. SATURDAYS ESQUINA FLORAL PRINT
A floral print can come off a little froo-froo, but the print on this short-sleeve button down from Saturdays is abstracted enough so that it’s just the right amount of flower power. It’s refined enough that you can wear it to work, or leave it unbuttoned as you chill at the beach.
2. WALLACE & BARNES INDIGO PILOT PANT
Jogger pants are a great style for summer. The cuffs give them a casual feel (and also show off your shoes better) but the material is similar to your favorite khakis so they’re not too relaxed. This pair is inspired by pants worn by Air Force pilots in the early 20th century. You may not want to wear them to the office, but they’re perfect just about anywhere else.
3. RRL STILWELL TOTE
This tote bag can go anywhere with you. Use it as your beach bag, your gym bag, or your office bag, and you’ll arrive at your destination looking sharp. It’s made with American denim that has a nice polka dot print. There is a zipper pocket inside to keep your phone and keys and the entire bag secures with a beautiful leather strap.
4. APOLIS POCKET T-SHIRT
The Peruvian cotton used on these T-shirts is ridiculously soft. The cut is inspired by old military undershirts, so it works great either layered underneath another shirt or on its own. As for the pocket, well, pocket T’s just look better than regular T-shirts, even though no one ever uses the pocket for anything.
5. KOMONO LULU SUNGLASSES
Komono takes a clever spin on the traditional tortoiseshell sunglasses with this indigo makeup. The classic frame shape looks good on all face shapes and you can mold the temples for a more customized fit.
6. THE HILL-SIDE BALL CAP
Indigo and white polka dots go together perfectly, and this 6-panel cap from The Hill-Side is further proof. It’s got a little bit of that vintage train conductor vibe, but is modern enough that it doesn’t feel kitschy.
7. FOLK CANVAS ESPADRILLES
If you’re looking for something a tad more classy than your Vans slip-ons, these espadrilles will do the trick. Crafted in Spain, they have a canvas upper that looks like denim but is significantly more breathable, which you’ll appreciate on those blazing hot days. The natural jute fiber provides the cushioning, but it’s lined in rubber so you won’t slip when you’re running around the pool (No running around the pool!!!)
8. ALEX MILL BARRACUDA JACKET
For those cool summer nights, this Alex Mill jacket provides the perfect layer. An update on the classic Baracuta jacket, this version features clever details such as a chest pocket and a leather zipper pull.