Cosy AND stylish: How to wear cardigans this season
Cardigans may have once won you very few style points. But, now, the humble cardigan, once the preserve of the tweeds and twinset brigade, has undergone something of a transformation. With autumn firmly set in, cardigans can be worn in a myriad of ways, keeping you warm AND stylish. With temperatures plummeting, we think a cardigan is the closest you can get to wearing a cuddle.
Here are my favourite ways to wear the humble cardi:
For your working wardrobe
While cardigans may not be seen as smart enough for the office, there are versions which look more like a blazer than a cardi, but, because they’re knitted, they are warmer and more comfortable to wear during the whole working day than a jacket. I love Anne Weyburn’s Milano knit, with its fitted style and classic white-on-navy colour-way from La Redoute’s cardigan collection. Or, you could take a leaf out of Christina Hendricks book in Mad Men and go for a belted, short-sleeved cardigan with a matching skirt. It’s a look which still feels retro, but which brings the twin-set up to date in a modern way.
There’s nothing cosier on chilly autumnal days than throwing on a cardigan and snuggling in front of the fire, or heading out for a walk to a country pub. Choose from either a chunky knit or bring this season’s heavy textures into your wardrobe with a fluffy cardigan in either deep jewel-like hues or the essential colour for this A/W, pink.
With a cocktail dress or leather
A gorgeous cardigan can add a wow factor to your evening wardrobe. Throw over your LBD to give it an instant update, or wear with skinny leather leggings like those by long-haired American designer Rick Owens. Oscar de la Renta’s cropped monochrome wool and silk blend cardigan is a work-hard design that looks equally good worn with jeans at the weekend, or a cocktail dress for a festive party.
For meeting friends
A boyfriend cardigan can be a girl’s best friend when it comes to dressing with just the right mix of elegance and casualness. Radio DJ Fearne Cotton is particularly adept at this, often throwing a grungy oversized boyfriend cardigan over a beautiful dress or playsuit and teaming with boots or sandals worn with socks.
With your summer dresses
Just because autumn has arrived, it doesn’t mean your summer wardrobe can’t still work for you. Gone are the days when we had separate wardrobes for different seasons, putting away all our summer clothing when the mercury starts to dip. By adding some opaque tights, boots and a warm cardigan, you can transform your summer dresses into winterwear. Hedi Slimane, who is currently the creative director for Saint Laurent, showcased this perfectly with his A/W runway show. He sent his models down the catwalk in pretty belted dresses accessorised with chunky buckled boots, with tartan cardigans thrown on casually on top.
A cardigan is the perfect purchase to make the rest of your wardrobe work harder for winter. You can add an extra layer of style, and warmth, to most outfits. So, if you don’t quite want to swap your biker jacket yet for a bigger winter coat, you could slip a cardigan on underneath it, deliberately playing with the different lengths. Or, you could put a cardigan under a fluffy gillet, making sure your arms are still warm.
Whether you layer it up, belt it for work, or throw on over your party cocktail dress, you’ll find, the cardigan is one of the hardest working items in your wardrobe.
by Katie Belle