Last Updated on October 24, 2023 by Eve Dawes
Cardigan dresses get a sophisticated upgrade, here’s how to wear them this season
Cardigan dresses and cardigan sweater dresses are no longer what were once associated with tasteless drab dressing but a runway staple. I’ve always loved sweater dresses. However, I’ve been wearing more and more knit cardigan dresses. As once you find a sophisticated cardigan dress that works for you and experience how versatile they are first hard you’ll be hooked. It’s a knit that’s perfect for layering, wearing on it’s own and from the first cool day of Fall all the way through Spring. Here’s everything you need to know about this Fall/Winter runway trend, wardrobe staple and how to style it.
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What are cardigan dresses
Cardigan dresses are also known as cardigan sweater dresses, button-up sweater dresses and maxi cardigans. Think of them like a sweater dress with buttons which makes them way more practical and easy to layer with. They can be ribbed or smooth knit and the hemline can be anything from mini dress to maxi dress length.
I definitely recommend getting one that you can wear fastened or unfastened to give you more ways to wear and style it.
Are cardigan dresses in style
Yes cardigan dresses are in fashion but not all styles. Forget the shapeless, tired styles and go for more stylish silhouettes, luxe materials, neutrals or trending colors like bold reds and pinks, or details like faux-fur collars as seen at Blumarine and Saint Laurent. Chunky cable knits are also a major fashion trend this winter.
As seen at 3.1 Phillip Lim, Altuzarra, Christopher Esber and Ganni fashion shows.
How to style cardigan sweater dresses
What I love about the humble knitted cardigan dress is that it’s easy to dress up or down, wear on it’s own or to layer with. As if you get too hot or too cold it’s easy to take on and off. You can also invest in various iterations from lightweight styles for warmer days to chunky knit versions for colder days.
Here’s 10 ways to style them to get the most wear and best cost per wear from them:
- Wear them buttoned up.
- Belt them to create more of a waistline.
- Wear it open as a duster coat.
- Invest in a matching 2 piece sweater dress and cardigan set.
- Style them over tights or leggings.
- Wear them open over jeans and a bodysuit or another dress for an extra layer of warmth.
- Add a winter coat for the coldest of days.
- Dress them up with heels or high heel boots.
- Add a more casual look with loafers, sneakers or flat boots.
- Layer them over a crisp collared shirt (fastened or unfastened) for an office appropriate outfit.
Wear it Open, Wear it Closed—Either Way, You’re Going to Want a Cardigan Dress For Fall.Vogue
Some of my personal favorites
I actually love this cardigan sweater dress so much I got it in both black and cream. It’s more of a faux cardigan as it doesn’t actually unbutton but they call it a cardigan dress and I love it so I’m adding it here. It runs big though, so consider sizing down. I’m wearing an XS in the black but ordered a XXS in the cream.
This black mini cardigan dress with crystal and pearl buttons is another one I have in multiple colors, black and navy. It’s lighter weight than some others making it the perfect transitional season piece.
Because of the fit and ornate buttons, it’s definitely a more dressy style. Whether that’s for work or going out. I personally think it looks better buttoned up and worn as a dress but it can be worn open too.
Shop the 30 best cardigan sweater dresses trending now
I’ve rounded up the styles I’ve seen this season from lightweight to heavier knitted cardigan dresses. Including my personal favorites, the one’s in my closet and the most versatile styles to try this practical Fall/Winter trend with.
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For more trend alerts, styling tips and outfit inspiration.
More Fall/Winter fashion I think you’ll love
From cozy knits to sexy leather, here’s what’s new this season: