How To Style Long-Line Cardigans: Must-Know Tips

Autumn is the magical, beautiful time when leaves turn orange, red, and brown, when the air feels fresh and crisp, and when layers of cozy clothing protect us from chilly weather. With fall come warmer cardigans, dusters, blazers, and jackets - endless opportunities to mix and match patterns, colors, and materials. In this post, I will focus on the art of wearing long-line cardigans and the best ways to style them this season.

There is one crucial aspect that you need to keep in mind when wearing a cardigan: what you are wearing under it is equally important. Why? Cardigans tend to be oversized, shapeless, and made with bulky materials; so, to make it look chic, you need to assemble a tailored look underneath it. An oversized long cardigan will look more polished over a fitted outfit. You would not want to look like you fell into a pile of clothing and cannot untangle yourself out of them.

Mini or Midi Skirt/Dress

One of my favorite looks includes a mini or knee-length skirt, black tights, a simple tailored top, and a duster. The critical point here is to wear a skirt that is straight and shorter in length than your duster. I suggest avoiding wearing a full or long skirt because it would clash with your cardigan, creating a messy look.

Skinny Jeans

The second easy option is to pair a duster with skinny jeans and a t-shirt/top. Keep in mind that the same principle of fitted garments under a cardigan applies here as well. A top that you pick to wear with skinny jeans has to be simple, with straight lines and preferably tailored. You can dress this look up or down by adding heels or white sneakers.


The third option is a nice twist to spice up any look. I like to wear a belt over my cardigan to create a more defined silhouette. A belt does not only work as a fashion statement but also has a practical use. If a particular cardigan does not have buttons or ties to keep it shut, the belt will ensure you stay warm and sealed.


The fourth option is to pair a monotone cardigan (grey, navy, sand, or brown color works the best) with a printed/patterned dress. Again, select a dress that is fitted with a straight skirt that is shorter than your cardigan. You can always add chunky jewelry or a scarf for additional detail.


The fifth option is the opposite of the fourth option above. Pair up a printed cardigan with a simple monochromatic outfit. You can go for a small little black dress, a camel/sand colored top and a midi skirt, or skinny blue jeans and a chambray button-down.

Wearing a short skirt and fitted top under my duster

Adding a belt to create a polished look

Wearing fitted clothes under a cardigan

Wearing a short black sweater dress under a cardigan

Add a belt

Wearing printed cardigan with fitted monochromatic look

Key Takeaways:

  • Wear tailored clothes under a cardigan

  • Go for shorter skirts and dresses

  • Add a belt to step up your game

Whatever option you choose, keep in mind that structure and fit are everything when it comes to styling long-line cardigans. When you are dealing with any garment that has that much material, you want to avoid a shapeless bulky look. So I suggest you create some definition and structure under your duster for a more polished chic look.

Welcome to fall!



Recent Posts

See All