How to Style Sweater Vests

In this style tutorial, I’m going to show you twenty outfits that I put together with two sweater vests - a pink cable knit vest that is waist length and a cream sweater vest that falls just below the hips. Sweater vests aren’t the easiest item of clothing to style, but I hope that my lookbook will give you some ideas and you’ll feel confident to wear one.

Wear a sweater vest


To start, I’ve gone with a neutral look—beige pants with beige booties in a complementary shade and a simple white t-shirt. The pink vest adds a gorgeous pop of color, while the cream one is a beautiful neutral tone that gives off more of a calm vibe.

How to wear a sweater vest


Time to make things exciting and step out of your comfort zone! Here I’m wearing a fun and funky tie-dye mini dress with the sweater vests on top. This is definitely a more unconventional look, but I wanted to include it in this lookbook to show that it works! I think that it looks fab.

Sweater vest style


This look has ladylike sophistication written all over it. I’m wearing a feminine pale pink midi dress with a pair of over-the-knee boots. The sweater vests are great to throw on when it gets a little chilly, an alternative to a classic cardigan.

Styling a sweater vest

Color play

In this look, I’ve gone for a pair of black skinny jeans and a mint green blazer. The green pairs just as well with the pink and the cream. When choosing a sweater vest to wear, take time to discover different colors that you can wear it with.

Style a sweater vest

Thick belt

Want to give some definition to your figure and create a more structured form? Simply wear a thick, chunky belt on top of your sweater vest to achieve the desired result. I’ve gone for a belt in a neutral cream color that ties in perfectly with the pants. 

Sheer blouse

In this outfit, I’m wearing a sheer blouse. The obvious way to style a blouse such as this is to wear an opaque top under it, but another way is to layer something on top of it. This way, your chest and stomach aren’t exposed, and yet you still get to show off the beauty of the sheer arms.

Statement sleeves

Here we have another sheer look where the sleeves make a bit more of a statement. I love the way they pop out from the sweater. I’ve paired the blouse with a pair of flared pants in a reddish-brown color and some beige booties.

Black contrast

Here I’m wearing a black mini-dress that contrasts beautifully with the cream and the pink alike. It allows the pink to really pop, and the cream and the black create a color-blocking effect. The black dress acts as a blank canvas here and really allows the sweater vests to be at the forefront of the outfit. 

Dressed up

This is another look that uses neutral tones but is a bit more dressed up. The silk skirt is luxurious and opulent and gives the whole outfit an elevated look. I’ve paired it with a cream tank top and cream booties.

Contrasting lengths

I love these outfit combinations because they really showcase the different lengths of the two sweater vests. The waist-length pink vest allows the A-line skirt to flare out beneath it, whereas the cream vest falls on top of the skirt to create an interesting layered look.

Stepping outside of our comfort zone can feel uncomfortable, and it might be easier to play it safe when it comes to fashion, but I believe that a little effort can go a long way. So next time you’re looking for a new addition to your wardrobe, why not try a sweater vest?

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

Join the conversation