Fashion is certainly cyclical, and while there are some trends we wish would stay permanently retired (i.e. cringy thong pants and dresses styled over jeans), there are others that seem to age quite well. This season’s popular sweater vests fall into the latter category.
Although the sleeveless sweater hasn’t always gotten the best rap—once associated with stuffy school uniforms, uptight dads, and ’90s sitcom super-nerd Steve Urkel—today’s resurgence has us questioning whether these pieces should have really ever gone out of favor. From classic preppy V-necks to retro argyle prints and joyous striped numbers, they’re not only eye-catching worn alone, but also a sleek, warm, and unfussy layering piece over everything from T-shirts and turtlenecks to dresses and button-ups. Just look to fall 2022 runways, street style aficionados, and the growing number of celebs who’ve been rocking the style lately for proof. (Oh, and might we mention famed fashion icon Princess Diana was known to sport a humble sweater vest or two?)
If you’re eager to perfect the formula yourself this season, you’ve come to the right place. Ahead, we curated some of our favorite sweater vest outfits to copy this fall. Plus, we compiled some chic sweater vest options and pairings to shop, in case you don’t already own these wardrobe building blocks.
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For a less literal approach to current western sartorial trends, add a sweater vest into the mix. A monochrome version can easily complement a prairie dress or denim shirt and flared jeans. And don’t worry, your go-to cowboy boots are still a necessity.
Petite Cima Oversized Sweater Vest
A deep V-neck sweater vest is also perfect for showing off fall’s menswear-inspired necktie trend. Keep the polished vibes going by opting for a white button-up, long pleated skirt, and loafers, as in this street style-approved ensemble.
V-Neck Sweater Vest
Lui Oversized Shirt
Re-Nylon Gabardine Tie
Pleated Midi Skirt
Alex Penny Loafer
Also back from their heyday in the ‘90s, track pants create such a satisfying outfit when contrasted with elevated pieces on top. Try a colorful sweater vest and voluminous puff sleeve blouse combo to earn all the compliments.
Sissou and the Lab
Candy Knitted Vest
Claire Puff-Sleeve Button-Down Shirt
Primeblue Relaxed Wide Leg Pants
If there’s anyone who can make dad fashion resonate, it’s Bella Hadid. Take a note from her style book by pairing a retro argyle-print sweater vest with an oversized leather trench coat and pants for a funky vintage-meets-modern aesthetic.
Quinn Sweater Vest
Star Crossed Lovers Pants
Faux Leather Trench Coat
There’s nothing like some bright stripes to break up seasonal blues. For even more mood-boosting effects, play up the bright hues of a multicolored sweater vest by styling it with foundational pieces and accessories of coordinating colors, à la Kendall Jenner.
Striped Wool Crochet Vest
Loose Khaki with Washwell
When sticking to neutrals in your outfit, a great way to create intrigue is by juxtaposing various silhouettes and textures. A boxy turtleneck sweater vest is the perfect centerpiece for capturing this essence. Pair the cape-like top with a relaxed-fit button-up and pleated knee-length skirt, and you’ve got a surefire, grid-ready getup.
Cap Sleeve Knit Top
Oversized Linen Shirt
Faux Suede Pleated Skirt
A simple yet striking formula: Start with a black base, then choose a punchy sweater vest and a coordinating fringe scarf you can luxuriously drape around your shoulders.
Ami De Coeur Knitted Vest
Alpaca Wool-Blend Fringed Scarf
The Way-High Drape Pant
A white tee is forever a powerhouse layering staple. This season, try yours with a button-front sweater vest, wide-leg jeans, and some fun statement heels for a smart yet playful look.
Elyse Button-up Vest
Kamerna 3 Heels
Slouchy, Y2K cargo pants are back in a big way, and how can you say no to all that handy storage? Give yours a preppy twist by pairing them with a varsity-style sweater vest, and slip into some easy slides for brunch or running errands.
V Neck Sweater Vest
Oversized Cargo Pants
Polly Puffy Knot Sandals
‘Tis the season for plaid skirts. Whether you choose a vintage tartan-print, Clueless-style, or punk-inspired version, add on a cozy sweater vest and staple handbag in a similar color story to pull the look together.
Fluffy Sweater Vest
The Envelope Crossbody – Black
Channel you inner Princess Di or embrace the bougie Aspen aesthetic with this cold weather-classic. For added warmth, layer yours with a turtleneck or blazer and opt for a denim skirt to add laidback flair.
Essential Long Sleeve Turtleneck
Scotch & Soda
Fair Isle Vest
Le Bardot Denim Midi Skirt
Leaning into the sweater vest’s collegiate roots is a safe bet when assembling a knockout sweater vest outfit. Feel free to adopt traditional pairings like a white button-up, pleated mini skirt, and simple knee-high boots, then bring the look squarely into 2022 by choosing a graphic knit vest featuring a bold or quirky motif.
Rydings Equestrian Boot
Think your cheeriest midi dresses only belong in summer? Think again. You can easily ground a vibrant yellow or orange frock, for example, with a cozy cable knit vest this fall. Slip into some equally bright sneakers, and you’re ready to face any gloomy day with an extra bounce in your step.
Fisherman Cable Knit Sweater Vest
Multicolor 327 Sneakers
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