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Organizing Clothing for the Color Blind

Category Clothing
When someone can not tell the difference between some colors and shades, they may need some help to be confident that their clothes are matched. This page is about organizing clothing for someone who is color blind.


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January 19, 2010

Can I get some ideas on how to organize my husband's dress shirts and pants so he knows what goes with what. He is color blind so is not good at matching shirt and pant colors.

I tried putting shirts with pants in groups, but some shirts will go with more than one pair of pants. He use to be able to wear jeans every day so it wasn't a concern now he needs to wear a dress shirt and "Dockers". I have lots of closet space to work with, I just don't know how to go about it. Any ideas would be great.

By neuroticmom from Los Angeles, CA


January 19, 20100 found this helpful

Various paper clips is my first idea (actually yarn was my first idea until I read your husband is color blind)

Get a variety of shapes and sizes. Put a specific one with each pair of pants. Clip them on the pocket (same pocket for all of them so he doesn't have to look for it).


Make notes for yourself which one goes with what color pants. For each shirt put on a matching clip for the pants they go with (put the clips on the collar so he doesn't miss seeing them and takes them off).

Put a small basket nearby so he can toss the clips in the basket for you to use on clean clothes after laundry.
small, medium & large paper clip
small, medium & large gator clip
figure 8 clips (I don't know what else to call them) they look like a W with a line over it various sizes

I think that would cover 9 possible colors to match to
You could just go by Staples or Office Max and check out their aisle with paper clips.

I am sure there are other ways too. If you know someone who is blind or someone who knows a blind person they coul tell you how they do it. I'm sure it is shape related so anything that gives you different shapes to match up would work.

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January 20, 20100 found this helpful

Is there a reason that you can't pick them out for him?
Maybe the night before, you could put the shirt and pants together on a hook on the closet door.

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January 20, 20100 found this helpful

Since you have lots of closet space, maybe you could put everything that he could wear together in one space dividing that space clearly from another say with a cardboard tag like the do not disturb signs hotels use?


Put sets together on one hanger ready for him to put on pants, shirt and tie.

Only buy neutral color pants, tan, brown, black; that will go with any color shirt.

Somehow photos might come into play here if we think about it some, if his shirts are patterned perhaps he could recognize them this way.

Buy two different shades of pants that will go with the same set of several shirts put these in their own divided space. If you do this with several sets he should be taken care of, hopefully.

Hope these ideas helped.

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January 21, 20100 found this helpful

Here's a link to an article on the topic.
http://www.asso  othes.html?cat=6
Hope it helps.

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January 21, 20100 found this helpful

I would place numbered clothes pins on each hangar. Assign each color a number. When a shirt goes with 3 colors place 3 numbered clothes pins on the shirt hanger.


That way he can pull out a pair of pants that are a number one and then look at all the shirts that have number ones on them and choose the one he likes best.

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January 22, 20100 found this helpful

Colour code the hangers - use cheap beads, coloured paper or etc

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January 23, 20100 found this helpful

As I have a very limited wardrobe and have memorized many of the colors of my clothes, I am mostly able to color coordinate in spite of my visual impairment. To help your hubby independently choose his wardrobe... Any store (brick & mortar or online) that markets to the blind and visually impaired markets color identifiers and color-matching systems.


Many are tactile or Braille. If he doesn't want to have to learn Braille, he could perhaps simply learn the different patterns. You could also try stringing small beads on small safety pins - different configurations of beads for different colors. For example, one bead for either white, black or whatever neutral color you choose, two for shades of blue or whatever color is most prominent, etc.

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May 16, 20160 found this helpful

I had a colorblind partner. I just marked the color name on tag with a sharpie(i.e. Light blue and put a list of colors that go together i.e. light blue-navy, black. Very easy, and after a while she learned the combination that work. I'm sure that doing this with a female was more difficult than it will be for a man. Don't overthink, this is easy.

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January 19, 20101 found this helpful

My husband cannot pick out his own clothes (a little color blind). I am looking for a way he can easily match his shirts in his closet to appropriate pants.


Christine from Des Moines, IA


Helping My Husband Match His Clothing

You could hang them together, as individual outfits, and that could help with mornings were he is running late. (08/24/2006)

By Kelly

Helping My Husband Match His Clothing

I love the previous ideas. Dr Phil's wife, Robin, always picks his clothes. If, however, your hubby insists on picking his own clothes, you could draw shape symbols (square, circle, triangle, etc) on the tags that are sewn in the clothing (with a permanent marker). Have a list taped to the closet door that says, for instance, circle = blue, square = green, etc. Just a thought, but I really do like the idea of lovingly helping by laying out the clothes the night before (FlyLady says we women should do that, too) (08/25/2006)

By SL Edens

Helping My Husband Match His Clothing

I have heard people sew either same material types on matching outfits or you could sew a number inside a pair of pants and inside a shirt. They both say 15, so they match. (08/25/2006)

By sandy

Helping My Husband Match His Clothing

As my father has gotten older, this has become a problem for him as well. My mother has sorted through his wardrobe, and donated anything not fitting into a general color scheme. When he needs new things, or we send gifts, we stay within this new color scheme and he would be hard pressed to mismatch an outfit. (08/25/2006)

By Deborah Jones

Helping My Husband Match His Clothing

The easiest way is to lay out or hang together matching outfits. Hang pants, shirt, and matching tie together on a hanger. You can mix up the combinations as you like, and he will always be able to pick out a coordinated outfit. If you stick to black, navy, and gray for pants, all black socks will do, as well as belt and shoes. (08/25/2006)

Helping My Husband Match His Clothing

One Idea I have is this: Simply print out a bunch of colors or letters (Like, NV = Navy Blue, etc.) on your printer. Then cut the color tags into strips, cut or tear of "tags" and simply staple these color tags onto everything as you 're sorting his clothes and/or partition his sock drawer and closet into different colors using the kind of plastic tags they use to mark changes in sizes at the clothing stores. You could make these out of cardboard and laminate with clear contact paper etc.

My Father played pro baseball, and a friend of his was color blind. When his friend traveled to away games, his wife rolled up his ties and socks that matched and put these in his pockets. Sometimes safety pinning shirts to pants in outfits that always matched. (08/26/2006)

By Cyinda

Helping My Husband Match His Clothing

This is a long post but, if you're one of my color-challenged brethren, or you love one of us, you won't mind too much. I have struggled for years with what to wear with what. I hated shopping for clothes even more than do the color-gifted guys. Many suggestions here from others are good, but all have practical limits. From experience, I can tell you many of them will not work well and others, like using color-coded dots, won't help at all for someone who can't tell the difference. Also, we need a system that we can manage by ourselves. We don't all have someone at home to dress us every day. Also, what about when we go shopping for new clothes?

We can't always take someone with us. How often have you guys had the salesperson at the store lay out great-looking combinations only to get them home and, a week later, not remember what goes with what? The fact is that there are maybe a hundred different types and degrees of color-blindness. I am red/green/brown/rust/ and green/gray/blue challenged. They have called it pastel-blind, but it's not as subtle as that label implies. Anyway, one method that works for me both for shopping and when getting dressed at home, is to take pictures.

First- Invest in a Polaroid camera, a few packs of film, and broad-point, indelible, laundry markers; one black and one white.

Shopping- Take a $20 gift certificate for a local lunch spot with you. Only shop where you find a salesperson who you like and who is willing to help you with your choices. Tell them about your color challenge (as you now do, I'm sure). After they show you all your combinations on a table and you have decided what you will buy, have them print the color inside the waist band of each of the slacks and on the back of the belts.

Next, have them again mix and match the different combos with the slack waist and belt turned over to see the color in the photos. Take close-up photos of each combo. It's important to get close-up because a gray and a blue shirt may look the same to you so you want to see the pattern in the fabric in the photo. Same goes for the socks so buy socks with a pattern, even if it's same, color-on-color pattern. You want to see the pattern in the photos.

When you check-out, give your salesperson the gift certificate and get his/her name, number, and work schedule. Ask them to call you if they quit or relocate to a different store. If he/she is a pro, you will always look for them when you shop and they will welcome you by name when you come through the door next time.

Existing wardrobe at home:
We all know at least one good woman who will help with this. Same procedure as when shopping. Don't forget to buy her lunch.

It is interesting that, some months after you do this, you will get the hang of what shades, as you see them, go with what and you might be surprised that you will not dread going shopping for a new shirt and tie. Just take the photo and ask what color slacks to wear with them. Oh yeah, put a bright lamp over your sock drawer . You guys know why. If you're willing to take a little time up front to do this, you will always leave the house looking good. I guarantee it. (05/16/2009)

By MikeF

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