6 Incredible Ideas: How to Style a Caftan

You may think that a caftan is only for lounging around the house, and there’s nothing wrong with doing that.

However, when something is as pretty as a caftan, I thought it would be fun to experiment with ways to style a caftan. Even if you don’t have a caftan in your closet, these are ideas you could use with many other items you own.

What is a Caftan? The usual definition of a caftan is a loose variation of a robe or tunic. It is one of those modest clothing items that cover the body and can feel overwhelming if you are used to form-fitting things.

Don't be afraid to combine a heavier-weight item with a lightweight piece as I've shown below.

Insider tip: The weight of an item is something known more to the wearer as opposed to the onlooker. Combining different textures and weights of fabrics gives a wonderful combination for an outfit.

I am showing 5 ideas of how to style this caftan below, with an extra bonus one on my site.

Overwhelming in a caftan

Add accessories with a caftan

1-Add Accessories

With a print caftan like this, the material is definitely going to take center stage. And there isn’t any shaping. But that doesn’t mean you can’t look fabulous.

Insider tip: Remember that being thin is not the definition of looking wonderful and being stylish. Confidence is the key and learning that your body is perfect as is.

One way to make sure you look intentional and clothed to step outside the house is to add accessories. Go big or go home as they say.

For my example, I added beautiful heels, wore shoulder-scraping earrings (thanks to Judy for making them for me), added a brooch at the neckline, and made sure my purse had the same fabulous vibe.

Insider tip: Your eyeglasses can be another way to make a look seem more intentional. Don’t think you can only wear glasses that match your complexion.

Use a belt as how to style a caftan

2-How to Style a Caftan with a Belt

Adding a belt to a shapeless item is a quick and easy way to give it some shape and even shortened it. Janet had suggested this option, and it works.

For my example, I still wore long earrings and added a bracelet. A bracelet also gives the outfit the idea that it was planned instead of looking like you left the house in your loungewear.

BTW, notice that I added a contrasting color purse which also creates a different focal point.

Now don’t forget that the chain belts would be another great option to give it some shape but not be as wide.

Insider tip: If you aren’t sure you will wear a chain belt much, get one at the young girl’s stores where they are inexpensive. Even if it doesn’t last a long time, you can find out if it’s something you’ll use. Otherwise, check the secondhand stores too.

Knot up your caftan to give it more shape


One of my favorite tricks is to pull up the extra material and create some ruching or shaping. Since there was quite a bit of material with the caftan, I used a hair elastic for my knot on the side.

Because of the print, you really don’t notice the knot easily yet it pulls up the material around the ankles in an asymmetrical way.

I also included a long necklace in a contrasting color to break up the front of the look. And then carried that same contrasting color into the outfit with my shoes and purse.

Adding layers for how to style a caftan

4-Wearing a Cardigan

Here is an example of combining two different weights in an outfit. The sweater and faux fur scarf are both heavy and bulky, whereas the caftan is lightweight. Yet I think it looks amazing.

The advantage of the caftan being a lightweight material is you can tuck the bat sleeves into a cardigan without trouble.

Don’t be afraid to wear boots with the caftan to keep warm.

Wear a micro sweater over something with bat sleeves

5-Layer Over (or Under) the Top Portion

You could layer under the caftan with a turtleneck or any long-sleeve top. You could also layer a micro sweater like this under it.

However, I wanted to try layering this micro sweater over it to see how it looks. And the reason I chose such a short sweater is so the bat sleeves wouldn’t bunch up. But if you have an oversized sweater or top, this could work too.

Over and under. Those are the two words that will make your layering options even bigger. In fact, you could even layer the rust cardigan in #4 under it after buttoning it up.

Insider tip: Remember, that you won’t know how you like something until you try it. Put it on and take a photo of it to get a better look. Just checking it in the mirror doesn’t give you the entire perspective.

With this example of how to style a caftan, I also wore a head scarf and chose a large purse. Those additions are ways to change the focus.

6 ideas of how to style a caftan

There's another option of how to style this same caftan on my site that I bet you never thought of.

The author may collect a small share of sales from the links on this page.

Jodie Filogomo
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