Sweater Girls: Tips for Wearing Sweaters this Fall
By: Sharon Mosley
Ever since Lana Turner wore the tight blue pullover in the 1937 movie “They Won’t Forget,” sweater girls have created a fashion sensation. Every season, designers reinvent this sexy basic that actually got its beginnings in the late 1800s in lowly horse stables when trainers used “sweater” blankets to make horses perspire — just a little fashion trivia for you! And who can forget the “twinset” cardigans introduced by none other than that famous French designer in the 1930s, Coco Chanel.
But today, sweaters have ridden into the modern wardrobe — reinvented in classic styles that can easily become your year-round “go-to” fashion favorites. Buy the best quality sweaters that you can find, and they will last you forever.
The key silhouette in sweaters this year, according to Michele Casper, fashion expert at Lands’ End, is the cardigan in a variety of necklines, lengths and weights. Some of the most popular styles include the V-neck cable “Professor” cardigan in a mid-hip length (with all-over cables) and the shawl drape cardigan in a longer length. The classic cashmere crew cardigan is always a favorite, says Casper.
“Newness this season is all about longer lengths and texture,” says Casper. “For an every year staple, the fine gauge crew cardigan remains popular as a key basic to have in your closet.”
Color plays a major role in sweater dressing this fall. “Neutrals are important this season with a pop of color,” says Casper. “Think brown and mink heather with pink, orange, green or cobalt blue.”
Here are a few tips for wearing the coolest sweater styles this fall:
— Choose a sweater that is figure flattering. Don’t even think about wearing those old, baggy oversized knits. The chunky knit sweater is a big trend this fall, but don’t try to hide in bulky silhouettes.
— Instead, pick lightweight sweaters that you can easily layer with other knits or woven pieces in your wardrobe. Lightweight cotton and cashmere blends are weights you can wear all year.
— The look is short over long. Proportions are key when layering sweaters: Pair a shorter cardigan over a longer, untucked blouse or tank top and slim trousers. Or team a longer tunic top with a shorter cardigan sweater and jeans.
— Go long and lean. The longer lengths provide versatile layering options. Whether it’s a long hand-knit vest, a ruffle-front sweater coat or a drape-front knit cardigan, longer is better. And who doesn’t like those hip-skimming options?
— Dress it up. The long cowl-neck tunics that can be worn as dresses over tights or longer, ankle-grazing sweater dresses are sweeping the runways. Just make sure you are tall enough to carry this look off, so you don’t look like you’re sweating it out by wearing a blanket yourself.
— Add a belt to give your longer sweater more definition at the waist. This is a great way to wear your longer sweaters to work. Make sure you combine the longer sweaters with slimmer pants to get the long over lean look.
— Experiment with patterns. Argyles remain a classic. Or festive Fair Isle sweaters will be big for the upcoming holiday season.
— Get glamorous. Yes, sweaters are our cozy fashion favorites, but think Lana Turner and put a little retro style into your wardrobe with form fitting, bracelet-sleeve styles paired with a full skirt … and pearls, of course.
— When wearing embellished sweaters, stick to subtle details. Don’t overdo the bling. Less is more when it comes to decorated sweaters — unless you want to go all out for Christmas Eve and Rudolph’s red nose is lighting up the way.
Sharon Mosley is a former fashion editor of the Arkansas Gazette in Little Rock and executive director of the Fashion Editors and Reporters Association. To find out more about Sharon Mosley and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
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