Tips on Styling the Sweater Vest


Spring 2024

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As summer comes to an end, you may catch yourself daydreaming of warm sweaters, plaid skirts, and pumpkin spice everything. If you’re like us and want to know what’s in the fashion forecast this upcoming season, you’ve almost certainly been on Pinterest for some autumn outfit inspo. Being an outfit essential of the ‘90s (as seen on Chandler Bing in literally every episode of Friends), the menswear-inspired sweater vest seems to be the fashion front-runner this year, occupying everyone’s feeds — and we’re not complaining! Fashion bloggers like Emma Chamberlain have done the leg work to show us just how many ways you can incorporate a sweater vest into your everyday outfits. 

Here are some tips on styling the latest trend, and one thing’s for sure — they’re not your grandpa’s sweater vest.

The Oversized Shirt

If your aesthetic tends to be more (or should we say less?) minimalistic, chances are you already own an oversized white button-up. Combining a neutral sweater vest over a classic blouse is practical and timeless. Depending on the length and, of course, your preference, the oversized shirt can be treated like a dress. Pair it with tall or chunky boots for a flirtatious modern look. Or, to make this look office-friendly, consider adding cigarette pants and some stylish mules. 

Layers for Days

Playing around with layering, especially in the months when the weather is less predictable, can be a fun way to try out newly purchased pieces or items you’ve had for a while. The sweater vest is the perfect opportunity to have fun with different sleeves and collars. A balloon sleeve under a crochet sweater vest, like this one by Zara, is sure to make a statement with a Renaissance-inspired look. Don’t be afraid to play around with different materials and textures when layering. Finish off the layering with a faux leather jacket to seal the deal. 

Play with Prints

Whoever said you couldn’t wear plaid with polka-dots was lying. If you fancy being extra and pushing fashion boundaries, you probably identify with an eclectic aesthetic. For sourcing a one-of-a-kind sweater vest, your local thrift store or Etsy might be your best option to produce this look. While blending kitschy and unconventional prints on top, you can ground the ensemble with neutral pants and classic loafers. 

Make it Femme

If you want a soft, feminine look, consider layering a sweater vest over a flowy dress (long or short). Especially on warmer days, this two-piece look will make you appear effortlessly put-together. Keep the ultra-femme look monochrome with a millennial pink vest by Aritzia, light pink dress by Résumé, and a rose-coloured shoulder bag. Cute dresses are no longer limited to summer days with this cozy combo. 

The Classic White T-Shirt

Opting for a sportier, more casual look? Simple yet so cute, adding a white T-shirt under any sweater vest of your choice takes your outfit from formal to chill. Argyle-patterned vests are a charming take on the classic trend, especially when paired with a pair of blue-cropped denim for a carefree look. If you’re looking to elevate the cool girl look one step further, add a pair of black Doc Martens as contrast to your plain white tee. 

Brooke Parker | Staff Writer

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