In this weeks blog I will explore the many options for sweaters for men and how they are key for winter dressing. I will look at several sweaters that you can add to your winter wardrobe to maximize your style.
Experimenting With Winter Style
Cities with long winter months like Halifax give great opportunity to experiment with your winter style. Winter style can create a lot of confusion for some men. There are lots of questions that pop up about how to be stylish in cold weather conditions. Where I live in Halifax, Nova Scotia, the winter months can be cold and damp; so you need to have the right combination of clothing to stay warm, be comfortable and stylish all at the same time.
There are a few pieces of clothing that I would recommend for winter dressing. To be prepared for the colder months every man should have a good pea coat, some scarves, a good pair of boots and most importantly a variety of sweaters.
Choosing the Right Sweater
Sweaters are key to winter dressing. But one won’t be enough. You should have a variety of sweaters in different fabrics and collar styles. With the right sweater, you can be prepared for any occasion at any time. They can be worn on their own or layered under a suit or sport coat. I will explore how the right sweater can take you from a day at the office to an evening dinner to a night out for drinks with the guys.
Let’s Talk About Fabric
First off good fabric is a must for winter clothing. A good quality fabric will allow you to layer without getting you overheated or causing you to sweat. A good fabric for those who are new to wearing sweaters would be merino wool. This is a very light weight material that is moderately thin and breathable and is soft to touch. This is the perfect fabric for layering.
This is another great fabric. Though many lambs wool sweaters are heavy knits and not best for layers. These are best to be worn on their own. It looks great with jeans and chinos. A shawl collar lambs wool seater looks great with a light wash denim and t-shirt underneath. This is perfect for those casual occasions or dinner with the family.
One of my favourite sweaters would be a cable knit lambs wool sweater. The cable knit is a beautifully woven sweater with crossing knitted layers to give it a very textured look. They are very warm and have a look that says it’s made with pure craftsmanship. You will be sure to get lots of compliments while donning one of these. It’s your choice on how to style one; wear it on its own or on top of a dress shirt or t-shirt. A great sweater for all casual affairs.
Perhaps the best fabric for sweaters. This fabric is lightest in weight and has an ultra soft feel. This is probably not the best choice if you are just starting to add sweaters to your style game as they are higher priced. One good cashmere sweater is worth investing in.
Know Your collar
Here are some collar types that will help build your wardrobe.
The Classic V-neck
Great to wear on its own over top of a dress shirt. These are great for layering as well. They look great under a sportscoat and or suit. Solid colours work best and will give you much versatility. It’s a good idea to have staple colours in your closet like navy grey and black, but to really expand your wardrobe and style try adding colours like burgundy, green and rust. These are eye catching colour choices that will make any outfit pop.
The Quarter Zip
This is perhaps the most popular choice for men these days. It’s warm, good for layering and adds a lot of depth and texture to any outfit. This is a must have. Wear it layered over a button down shirt and topped with a sport coat for a perfect business casual look, or wear it on its own on top of a t-shirt for a more casual look. The quarter zip comes in many colours; try adding a mixture of light and dark colours to your closet to experiment with.
This sweater is making a huge comeback this winter. It gives a charming look when worn under a textured sportcoat. It instantly gives the look of sophistication. Many celebrities like Bradley Cooper and Tom Hanks are known to be proud wearers of the turtleneck.
The Crew Neck
Crew neck sweaters would be the most causal choice. This classic rounded collar sweater is best worn on its own with dark denim or chinos. For a smart casual look try layering a merino wool, crew neck over top of your favourite dress shirt. If you like the idea of a turtleneck on its own under a sweater but don’t like how high it sits on the neck, try doing the same with a merino crew neck. The only rule here is to make sure there is enough contrast between your sweater choice and sport coat. Too much of the same colour looks outdated and comes off like you don’t know what you’re doing.
Shawl collared sweaters have seen a rise in popularity in the last few years. They are normally bulky and knitted. They provide lots of warmth and pair great with jeans. A shawl collar sweater over a clean white t-shirt makes for a great casual outfit. Finish the look off with tan fitted chinos and a good dress boot for a great winter causal outfit. If you are ready for the next step wear a sport coat over top of you shawl collar sweater to create the ultimate layered look.
Sweaters for the Occasion
A good sweater can easily take you from a day of work at the office to date night at the Economy Shoe Shop. Wear a fitted merino wool v-neck or quarter zip paired with your favourite suit. Depending on your dress code at work you can wear this sweater over a shirt and tie or open collared. When it’s happy hour, ditch the tie and swap your suit jacket for your favourite sport coat. You went from office casual to polished causal just like that. Simply lose the sport coat and top your shirt and sweater combination with a stylish pea coat and scarf.
Which Sweater Will You Choose?
Any of these sweaters would make a great addition to your closet. Experiment with different colours, fabric and collar types to enhance your personal style. You will quickly find out what works well together and what doesn’t. Try layering these in with your current style to switch things up. Which sweaters will you choose to add to your closet?