Styling and Layering Jumper Dresses

by Oddlilbean

As I briefly mentioned in my last post about dressing for fall, I love to layer clothing. Partially because I'm perpetually cold and partially because it gives even more opportunity to pattern and color mix, which I am a sucker for. Outside of layering with coats and sweaters, jumpers also add a fun way to add layering into an outfit, so with this post I'm just going to quickly run through a couple outfits I've put together that do exactly that.

Like I've said time and time again in past posts and even the intro of this post, I love pattern mixing. Because of how subtle the pattern on the jumper is (made by me), it gives a lot of freedom on what pattern I can pair with it. I ended up doing with this penguin-printed Victoria Secret pajama top I picked up at Goodwill over the summer. I left it unbuttoned just below the neckline of the jumper to create a more fun and dynamic neckline that also is perfect for framing a necklace (an anatomical heart necklace).

For accessories, I added a vintage strawberry pin from my great-grandma and some vintage earrings I picked up for a dollar at my local flea market that has an antique and vintage store hidden in the back. The scarf is another hand-me-down but from my grandma, and the shoes are another Goodwill find. I added the crew socks (Target) because I felt like they went with the retro vibe the outfit was giving off.

I was told by multiple students that I looked like a strawberry in this outfit, which I could not stop cracking up at. 100% outfit success.

Another day, another jumper, and this time vintage. Because of how busy and interesting the pattern is on the dress, I didn't want to detract from it, so I decided to with with a plain shirt, but to still have some fun with it, I went with a shirt color that was not in the jumper. I went with the teal shirt because teal is a blue-green which helps tie it to the lime green; however, the shirt is a much cooler color than the green and brown in the jumper, so it still adds some nice contrast between the pieces. I kept the rest of the styling neutral to really highlight the jumper and make it the statement piece of the outfit.

Everything in this outfit is either thrifted or a hand-me-down from relatives.

This is another jumper dress made by yours truly! The jumper started from a 90s pattern given to me by my boyfriends mom, and then I altered the crap out of it once I realized I wasn't feeling the original design because of how dated it felt. The biggest thing I changed was the elastic waistband. I replaced it with buttons going down the back and a tie at the waist (which I should have photographed...), and then I gathered the bodice and skirt to the waistband length. The neckline was also suppose to be super loose and low (like to mid-waist), so I brought it up and in to make it feel a little more modern. I also brought the hem up about a foot since I'm partial to short hemlines since I'm, well, short.

Because of all of the effort I put into making the jumper, I naturally wanted the focus to be on it, even more so than the last outfit. So, I kept all of the colors analogous, within the same color family, as the jumper.

And back to some pattern mixing because I just can't help myself! The last couple outfits have just been layering with shirts, but obviously you can also layer with leggings as well, especially when it starts to get a big chilly out. Because of the two patterns between the (vintage) jumper and leggings, I decided to keep the shirt solid and matched it to the legging's colors to basically create a visual color sandwich. I decided to go with red Mary Jane shoes instead of neutral brown shoes just because it as a pop of color to the outfit and it helps pull out some of the red in the leggings. Red and green can be tricky to pair because of the Christmas association, but they do go together when done right since they're complementary colors. I've been thinking of doing a separate post on this.

The result is definitely a more quirky vibe and not necessarily everyone's cup of tea, but you could easily wear solid leggings instead a give off a more retro vibe.

Speaking of retro, I definitely feel like I'm giving off some retro vibes with this look thanks to the fit of the jumper and zipper down the center. I decided to play up that look a bit with some Mary Jane shoes paired with solid crew socks and the striped crew-neck shirt. This is definitely more on the casual side for my personal style and is something I usually throw together when I don't want to put much effort into styling.

Except for the socks (because even I have to draw some lines), this entire outfit is secondhand from Goodwill.

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 1 comment
  • Mary Mary on Sep 25, 2021

    Yes you put the outfits together very well. Not my taste but they look

    stunning on you. And I love the socks.