How to wear maxi cardigans


Currently a trend for fall/winter, maxi cardigans also known as duster cardigans, are long length sweaters that hit anywhere between just below the knee and the ankle. I particularly like the trend, because it feels fresh, stylish, and new without being ridiculously trendy. Plus, they’re super versatile!

Here are a few tips for wearing the style:

  • Maxi cardigans are best in neutral colors made of fine gauge knit. It’s a lot of fabric on your body, so it is easy to become overwhelmed.
  • If you’re tall, you can wear a thicker knit (or possibly even a pattern) that hits at ankle length—you can pull it off.
  • Average height women are better off in mid-calf lengths. If you’re petite, you will probably want to shop the petite department for this sweater, so it hits you in the right spot on your leg.

As mentioned, the style is versatile and can be worn casually and for business casual. Here are some ways I style my own charcoal grey, cashmere maxi cardigan:

  • With black leggings or skinny jeans. I layer the cardigan over a white or black long tank, camisole or long sleeved T and top with a scarf to add a little color or textural interest. Although I’ve been living in my flat,  black, over the knee boots, I can wear the outfit with booties or even flats if the weather is warm enough.
  • My other favorite way to wear my maxi or duster cardigan is layered over a white T (more casual) or grey ¾ sleeve jersey knit top. On bottom is a space dyed grey and pumpkin/tan midi length tube skirt. Sometimes, I’ll belt the whole thing. With this combo, I wear grey-brown booties.
  • Because the silhouette of the maxi or duster cardigan sweater is loose but straight, it is most flattering over slim pieces.
  • Be sure your bottom pieces underneath are either shorter or longer than the cardigan. It’s a little frumpy/out dated looking for the hems to match exactly.

Last but not least, I know what you’re wondering…what coat do I wear? I know-it’s a bit of a dilemma. You may not have a coat as long as the cardigan. My solution lately has been to top the whole outfit with my short jean jacket and add my cashmere/linen Chan Luu scarf for warmth. It’s a bit of a trendy look, but without launching into a long explanation about proportions, just know that it works. (Quite honestly, any coat will work as long as it’s not terribly dressy or conservative.)

I’d love to know what you think of the maxi cardigan! Do you love it? Hate it? And if you have one, how do you style it?

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