Cardigan are the best way to stay cozy with a light layer in spring and in this style guide I wanted to share some effortless style tips that can help you look chic wearing long cardigans. These style tips will be helpful in creating a put together look pretty fast and you can easily come up with outfits that look good no matter how much of a hurry you are in because let’s face it, no one has time these days even though most of us are working from home.
In this post I am focusing on long cardigans, but if you want me to create a guide for you about cropped or short cardigans, don’t forget to leave a note in the comment section below.
Opt for Lighter Color
This is the easiest way to refresh your overall look in spring and summer. Going for lighter cardigans like blush, nude or even white can transform your outfit to look more appropriate for the season and hence looking more stylish.
I always find that if I dress appropriately for the occasion, I automatically feel more confident and probably look more stylish. So, even if you are wearing your ankle boots or sweaters, if you just switch the color tone of your third piece, you can easily look more put together for spring.
There are in general two rules I follow when I am wearing a lighter cardigan.
Keep your Top Lighter
It does not matter whether I am wearing a long sleeve top or a short sleeve top, I ensure that the color of my top is lighter than the color of the cardigan. You must be wondering why is that so, its because, most lightweight cardigans are usually partially see through. This means the sleeves of your darker top will be visible through the cardigan.
While you might think it does not matter, these tiny details make a huge difference to the overall look. It just does not look way stylish if somehow this makes your cardigan look cheap. I won’t say anymore, you get the picture.
There is a great way you can absolutely getaway with this, if you are wearing sleeveless tops.
Wear a Fitted Top Underneath
If your top is comparatively bulkier than the outer layer which is a cardigan in this case, then it also does not look all that good.
I usually opt for a tighter top so that the cardigan looks proportionate and my overall look appears cohesive. So, if you are wearing a chunkier top, try going for an even loose cardigan. You can actually try Coatigans which are an excellent alternative for Cardigans that look chic and way more structured.
I own a Coatigan from Banana republic and absolutely love it. Checkout the review below.
Cardigans themselves are delicate, so pairing them with something slimmer creates a cohesive style.
Add Structure To The Look
Long Cardigans usually are more flowy and do not have any kind of structure like a blazer of a trench coat will. Cardigans are more relaxed and probably the main reason are liked a lot for daily wear. But you can easily add some structure to your entire look without having to wear a structure piece like a blazer itself.
Tuck In your Top
This is the easiest way you can add some structure to your look and stop your outfit from looking frumpy. Just tuck in all your tops into your bottom and you would be amazed how your outfit transforms.
I live by this rule with all my outfit. If I am wearing something separate, I have to tuck in.
You don’t have to do a full tuck in, if it feels uncomfortable, you can just do front tuck or side tuck. I have a complete video about it which I have linked below:
Add a Structured Accessory
If you are wearing a dress, you can’t tuck in anything and if its a casual dress like a T shirt dress, it might feel weird. In this case I would recommend tying a belt around your cardigan.
It instantly transforms the outfit into more structured and put together look. This also makes the outfit perfect for work if you have a business casual dress code.
I also love that a belt gives a waist definition to the dress which can look a bit meh otherwise. What do you think?
I have shared some more ways you can wear wear a belt which will come really handy! check it out.
In case, you do have to wear a darker cardigan like a black one, which most of us probably wear a lot, you should opt for a lighter top or bottom or even a dress.
This way your outfit still feels fresh and spring like. This is not so much a style enhancer itself, but its more like a mood enhancer.
I find that if my outfit feels fresh and appropriate for the weather, it also boosts my confidence and also eventually my style.
If you have a pair of white jeans, you can absolutely pair it with black cardigans and still look chic. It also looks monochromatic which brings me to my next tip.
Color Coordinate your Look
You don’t have to go all matching from top to bottom, but coordinating the color of your cardigan with another piece in your outfit can really enhance your outfit. Even if its an accessory or a pair of footwear, creating a cohesive look in a certain color theme looks so stylish.
You might have already seen these famous fashionistas who do this all the time.
If you are adding more colors, keep them a minimum to 3 so hat your outfit looks cohesive.
Checkout my Pinterest board for some color inspiration.
Pay Attention to Proportions
Its important to pay attention to the length of the cardigan and ensure that its proportionate to your outfit. Because of the nature of the cardigans, they are usually just thrown on with everything. There is absolutely no problem with that.
But if you want to look a bit more put together, then paying close attention to the length of the cardigan compared to the outfit will help achieve that. Lets check some examples.
Shorts & Long Cardigan
While this is probably also my go to outfit, it does not look the very best. Your overall appearance looks sloppy and frumpy. (Please don’t hate me, I am just trying to help!)
I have been skipping this option and going with short cardigans which look more put together than longer ones with shorts.
If you do want to wear something longer, opt for a Trench coat.
Dresses & Cardigan
Here the opposite works best. If you are wearing a short dress, a long cardigan looks amazing. It creates a boho chic vibe. Add in a pair of ankle boots and hats and your bohemian outfit is complete.
With a longer dress go for mid length cardigans. A long cardigan again makes the outfit frumpy. Your overall appearance looks disproportionate. This is something I was absolutely guilty of in my 20s when I was a young mom.
Create a Statement
I try this all my outfit whether it is casual everyday, work or special occasion. So, its natural that I want to share it here as well.
Create a statement style with a statement piece. It does not have to be designer or expensive, but something that creates a focal point in your look. Like you can add a silk scarf, a pair of cool sunglasses, or a pop of color with colored footwear.
This transforms your everyday simple outfit into a statement look which you will absolutely love and might become your go to look.
I love adding a pop of color with my cardigan looks just because I wear solid colored cardigans usually in a neutral shade.
If you have a favorite style hack that helps you look chic in a cardigan, do share. Sharing is caring and if you have any questions, don’t forget to ask in the comment section below.
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