There aren’t many combos that epitomize the smart-casual aesthetic as well as this one does. Wearing a blazer is a pretty easy way to dress up a pair of blue jeans.
While it isn’t hard to pull off, there are definitely ways of making sure it makes sense. What you don’t want is a formality mismatch – a blazer that just looks too formal to wear with blue jeans.
After going through what you need to do to make it work, we’ll run through 11 different ways you can wear it.
Let’s get to it.
Wearing A Blazer With Blue Jeans: The Bottom Line
When wearing a blazer with blue jeans, try to choose a blazer with “casual” features.
For example, soft, unpadded shoulders and a relaxed fit. Rugged or wrinkly textures such as tweed, linen, and flannel work well with the rough texture of denim blue jeans.
In addition, try to choose blue jeans that don’t look too casual.
While jeans will never look formal, there are definitely pairs that just look dressier than others.
So, avoid excessive distressing – too many rips, frays, and tears will usually look odd when wearing a blazer.
While you can experiment with looser/baggier fits (wide-leg, bootcut, etc), it’s hard to go wrong with slim or straight-fit pairs of blue jeans.
Finally, experiment with what you wear under the blazer.
As you’ll soon see, wearing a casual pair of pants gives you plenty of scope to experiment with what you wear up top and under the blazer.
Try T-shirts, polos, crew-neck sweaters, turtlenecks, button-ups, and so on.
Sure, you’ll find some combos that just don’t work, but you’ll find plenty you would never have thought of if you didn’t experiment.
That’s the beauty of a capsule wardrobe.
11 Ways To Wear A Blazer With Blue Jeans
Here you’ll see just how many different variations there can be. They vary based on:
- The shade of the blue jeans
- The style, color, and texture of the blazer
- What you wear under the blazer
1. With A White Shirt And An Overcoat
Items: Navy Blazer, Dark Blue Jeans, White OCBD shirt, Camel Overcoat
Here’s a relatively dressy way to wear it. A navy blazer will generally look dressier than the light grey/tan options you’ll see later on.
The dark blue, slim-fit, non-distressed pair of Levis 512 jeans I’m wearing have a sleek and sharp aesthetic to them.
I’ve gone for a white OCBD shirt here. A classic Oxford Cloth Button Down shirt is so hard to go wrong with.
You can wear them with jeans, chinos, or dress pants – they’ll always work.
A white OCBD would look much more appropriate than a white dress shirt here, as dress shirts can often look awkward and mismatched when wearing jeans.
Finally, the camel overcoat (J. Crew Ludlow) is a great way to add some warmth and color to an otherwise neutral color scheme.
2. With A Turtleneck Or Mock Neck
Items: Grey Tweed Blazer, Dark Blue Jeans, Black Mock Neck Sweater
When wearing a blazer with blue jeans, consider a turtleneck or a mock neck sweater to add a sharp yet laid-back edge to the combo.
As you can see, it looks more casual than the white OCBD used in the previous example, but any high-neck sweater is a cheat code in men’s style.
It’s almost too easy.
But what really makes this combination work well is the color scheme. The dark blue, grey, and black combo is really hard to go wrong with.
It’s subtle, yet sophisticated.
It’s also neutral enough for you to easily add pops of color to it elsewhere if you wanted to.
3. With A Mock Neck Under An Overshirt
Items: Grey Tweed Blazer, Dark Blue Jeans, Muted Blue Overshirt, Black Mock Neck Sweater
Here, all I’ve done is added another layer – a slightly oversized, muted blue utility shirt over the black mock neck.
It’s a great way to add another color into the mix. I also think that wearing a partially unbuttoned button-up shirt over a turtleneck/mock neck is an underrated layering option.
It stands out from a crowd because it isn’t as commonly seen.
But it works.
While you could leave it untucked if you wanted to, I much prefer to button up the bottom two buttons and leave it tucked.
It looks smarter and also reveals the underlying mock neck through a narrow V-shirt gap.
4. With A Tucked T-Shirt
Items: Relaxed Cotton Tan Blazer, Pink T-Shirt, Light Blue Jeans
Wearing a T-shirt under a blazer is a pretty common way for people to say they’re dressing up but not too much.
It’s hard to go wrong with and will generally always work when the setting is casual enough to allow for it.
As mentioned earlier, you do need to make sure the blazer is on the more casual end of the spectrum.
I love cotton blazers because they’ll always look more casual than wool alternatives.
Here, I’m wearing a relaxed cotton tan blazer. As you can see, it’s a little wrinkly, a little baggy, but works well with a casual pair of light blue jeans.
The color scheme here is eye-catching.
I love to pair pink base layers with brown/cream-tone outer layers. The “peaches and cream” combo is usually a pretty safe play.
5. With A Shawl Collar Cardigan
Items: Grey Tweed Blazer, Blue Shawl Collar Cardigan, Dark Blue Jeans
The shawl collar cardigan is another one of those cheat codes every man should have in their wardrobe.
It’s a simple way to dress up even the most casual of outfits. Here, the navy blue shawl collar cardigan pairs effortlessly with the grey tweed blazer – a subtle, smart-casual aesthetic.
You could leave it unbuttoned if you wanted to, but a buttoned shawl collar cardigan has an undeniably dapper appearance to it that can be hard to pass up.
While you could also go for a button-up shirt under the cardigan, wearing a simple crew-neck tee makes it clear that you’re going for smart-casual and not business-casual.
6. With A Shawl Neck Sweater
Items: Tan Blazer, Beige Shawl Neck Sweater, Dark Blue Jeans
Similar to shawl collar cardigans, shawl neck sweaters can make for a great base layer under the blazer.
Wearing non-crew-neck sweaters under blazers sometimes gets a bad rep but I’ve never really understood why.
When wearing jeans, you’ve got the freedom to experiment with base layers. That’s the undeniable beauty of it.
Here, I’ve gone for a Ralph Lauren shawl neck sweater. The beige sweater combines pretty effortlessly with the tan blazer.
If in doubt, pair cream tones and light shades of brown. Off-white, khaki, taupe, tan, beige, cream, and so on.
While I could have easily gone for light blue jeans instead of the dark pair of 511s I’m wearing here, the contrast between light and dark is a little more eye-catching.
In addition, the dressier appearance of dark blue jeans just goes well with the more elegant appearance of the shawl neck.
7. With A Denim Shirt
Items: Blue Denim Shirt, Tan Blazer, Light Blue Jeans
Wearing a denim shirt with denim jeans works best when the colors or shades of the two items are noticeably different.
Here, the denim blue shirt is noticeably darker than the denim blue jeans.
I’d call a tan blazer + blue shirt combo a “brown and blue” color scheme. It’s another pairing I find works extremely well together.
I’ve layered a white T-shirt under the denim shirt here but it definitely isn’t necessary.
Having a bit of white peeking through from under the blue is a nice pop of contrast but does need to make sense for the weather.
8. With A Polo Sweater
Items: Beige Polo Sweater, Tan Blazer, Dark Blue Jeans
Polo sweaters look great when worn under a blazer.
It definitely tends to work best with more relaxed blazers and sport coats, mainly because the polo collar can flap around and look strange under a more formal blazer.
But a polo sweater makes for a great alternative if you feel as though a shawl neck may look a little odd or excessive under a blazer.
Ultimately, tucking a polo sweater into a pair of dark blue jeans has a subtle Ivy/Prep aesthetic that would appeal to those that wouldn’t usually be drawn to the subculture.
It just looks sharp.
Round things off with a pair of loafers or dress sneakers and you’re on your way.
9. With An Unbuttoned, Untucked Shirt
Items: Tan Blazer, Unbuttoned Blue OCBD, White T-Shirt, Light Blue Jeans
Here we’re pushing the boundary of what’s “acceptable” to wear under a blazer. Don’t get me wrong – it isn’t exactly avant-garde.
The shirt-over-T-shirt layering option just works well.
But an untucked and unbuttoned button-up shirt (like this blue OCBD) under a blazer can look odd if you don’t choose the right items.
For example, an unbuttoned, untucked dress shirt under a worsted wool charcoal blazer is going to turn heads for the wrong reasons.
But a casual OCBD unbuttoned over a white T-shirt and worn under a relaxed cotton blazer can look great, especially when combined with a casual pair of blue jeans.
Here, you could simply consider the casual blazer as a form of outerwear. Instead of a cotton chore coat or field jacket, you’re going for a relaxed cotton blazer.
You couldn’t do the same with the worsted wool charcoal blazer, but casual blazer styles can certainly be thought of in this way.
10. With A Crew Neck Sweater
Items: Navy Blazer, Grey Crew Neck Sweater, Dark Blue Jeans
Crew neck sweaters look great worn with blazers and blue jeans. In fact, crew-neck sweaters are considered the more “appropriate” sweater style to wear under a blazer.
It looks a little less attention-grabbing than the shawl neck you saw in the previous example.
While you could wear a button-up shirt under your sweater, it may look a little too business casual for your liking here. This is especially true when wearing dark blue jeans.
If this is the look you’re going for, go for it.
But I like to wear crew neck sweaters under blazers without the collar of a button-up shirt peeking out from underneath.
It has more of a smart-casual look to it, as opposed to a business-casual one.
11. With A Flannel Shirt
Items: Red Flannel Shirt, Grey Tweed Blazer, White T-Shirt, Dark Blue Jeans
The grey blazer and dark blue jeans once again form a neutral foundation over which you can add pops of color if you want to.
That’s exactly what I’ve done here.
I’ve added a bright and bold red flannel shirt into the mix and layered it over a white T-shirt for an additional pop of contrast.
Flannels are great for people that don’t typically wear loud colors. As they’re generally expected to be bold and in-your-face, I feel as though you can get away with style choices you’d otherwise find tricky.
For example, if I was simply wearing a bright red OCBD under the blazer, it may come across as a little too much.
But having that classic plaid or tartan pattern present gives you a pass. People expect boldness from flannel shirts and are generally more accepting of them as a result.
They’re surprisingly versatile and generally look great with the similarly workwear-inspired aesthetic of jeans.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are the answers to a couple of FAQs to really round things up.
What Blazer Colors Go Best With Blue Jeans?
Black, grey, navy, and brown blazers are generally very easy to wear with blue jeans. They’re neutral, subtle, and give you the ability to add pops of color to your outfit elsewhere.
Having said this, I do like to think of blue denim items as being neutral(ish) too. This is true of even light blue jeans.
You’ll find that it really isn’t hard to pair bright/bold colors with blue denim. It’ll just work.
So, don’t worry too much about whether your blazer coordinates with your denim blue jeans.
There’s a good chance it does – it really just depends on whether you want a subtle option or a more attention-grabbing one.
Can You Wear A Blazer With Blue Jeans To A Wedding?
A blazer and blue jeans combination would rarely ever be considered appropriate for a wedding. Even for “casual” weddings, you’d be better off going for a blazer and chinos or dress pants combination instead.
You’ll often find that “casual” weddings aren’t actually casual.
They may present themselves as being “casual”, but a pair of jeans would usually draw a few awkward stares.
A pair of dark blue jeans wouldn’t be the worst thing to wear to a casual barn wedding, for example, but it wouldn’t be a great option.
You don’t want to risk offending the wedding couple or just being the most underdressed guest in attendance.
Play it safe and go for chinos or a pair of dress pants instead.
Ready Sleek founder. Obsessed with casual style and the minimalist approach to building a highly functional wardrobe. Also a fan of classic, vintage hairstyles.