How to Wear a Men’s Cardigan

How to Wear a Men’s Cardigan

Mens Cardigan

How to Wear a Men’s Cardigan

A cardigan is a versatile garment. It can be worn open to show a shirt and blazer underneath, as a surrogate suit vest or over a dress shirt and tie with pants or slacks.

It can also be worn closed to a tailored look, as a replacement for a men’s suit jacket or over a tuxedo. Regardless of how it is worn, it adds warmth and structure to any outfit.


For a long time, cardigans have suffered from a preppy stigma, which is odd given the fact that they are perfect for lazy Sundays and work nicely in business casual offices. The key to pulling off a good look with these knitted garments is picking the right style for the occasion. The best option is a fine-gauge men’s cardigan in a natural fabric such as cashmere or silk, which provides a warm yet refined finish to any outfit. Look for a shawl neck cardigan that adds a touch of elegance, or opt for a longer version that expertly complements a tailored shirt and chinos.

The fit of a men’s cardigan is also important, and you should choose fitted styles for a smart appearance or loose designs for a relaxed look. If you want to create a flattering silhouette, consider a long cardigan that narrows around your Men’s Cardigan rib cage before widening down towards the hips. The look is less formal than a men’s jacket and looks great paired with slim-fit jeans in various shades and washes.

Look for a fine-tooth knitted material and avoid a heavy or chunky texture, which will appear too rough. Look for a contrasting color or pattern, such as a check or herringbone, that adds interest to the look and draws the eye upwards. If you prefer, choose a classic design that features an array of buttons, such as horn, mother of pearl or wooden toggles, which are more traditional than plastic ones.


Men’s cardigan sweaters are typically made of cotton, wool or wool blends. They can also be made of natural and synthetic materials such as acrylic, rayon and polyester. Cotton sweaters are usually soft, washable and wrinkle-resistant. The thicker the yarn used to make a sweater, the warmer it will be.

The higher the ply count, the more expensive it will be. The ply refers to the number of threads that are twisted together to form the yarn. For example, a 2-ply knit is thin and inexpensive while a 6-ply knit is very warm but will be more costly.

A great cardigan will fit well and have a nice drape. It should not be too tight to the body or it will look suffocating. It should be fitted in the chest and shoulders but not cling to any bulges. A good cardigan should have a slight taper at the waist to flatter the figure.

The size of the buttons is important too. Large round or decorated buttons read as feminine and are best avoided. Smaller buttons, mother of pearl or wooden toggle buttons have a classic appearance and are preferable. Plastic buttons are usually found on men’s cardigans but can easily be replaced by horn or leather ones if desired. A zipped cardigan is an option but it lacks the classic look of a buttoned sweater and tends to lie flat with an unattractive “bathrobe” effect.


As a layering piece, the men’s cardigan can be worn open or buttoned up. The thicker varieties function as a handsome coat alternative in cold weather while the thinner styles work under sports jackets and even serve as a surrogate waistcoat. They are also a staple item for casual office wear when paired with a dress shirt and tie, or simply tucked into trousers or chinos.

The key to making a men’s cardigan look good is choosing the right fit for your body type. Loose-fitting cardigans look more relaxed while fitted options create a more polished appearance. The hem of the sweater should not extend past your belt line and should fit tightly enough to prevent it from gaping open when you bend forward. The sleeves can be rolled up or pushed back on your arms for a more casual look and should be long enough to cover your hands when you hold them out in front of you.

A shawl collar is an attractive option and adds visual interest to the look of your outfit. A hood is another nice touch that is both functional and fashionable. For a more formal look, you can choose a cardigan that features patterned fabric like bird’s eye, houndstooth or Prince of Wales check. You can pair these with khakis or chinos for an oceanfront dinner date or with a white oxford shirt and tie when dressing up for a business meeting.


Men’s cardigan sweaters may have a quaint, old-fashioned look but they can be worn in a modern way to add style and comfort to a casual outfit. This knitwear staple is versatile enough to wear with jeans Men’s Cardigan and leather boots or chukkas for a weekend outing, dressy trousers for a casual workplace outfit, or even a suit jacket for semi-formal occasions.

A classic cardigan is also easy to dress up with a button-up dress shirt, especially if the shirt has a pattern or stripes. The fit of the cardigan is important: a loose fit will create a relaxed look, while fitted styles that lightly hug the body help to define the shoulders and chest. When choosing a fabric for a men’s cardigan, select one that is soft and has good stretch to give you flexibility when wearing it.

If the cardigan is made from wool or a wool blend, it should be washed on occasion to avoid pilling and odors. While you do not want to wash it so frequently that the fabric becomes brittle or shrunk, a few washes should keep the sweater looking fresh. When not in use, the cardigan should be kept in a garment bag to prevent creases and wrinkles. If the cardigan has a zipper, it should be closed when not in use to prevent loss of shape.