#OOTD: How to Wear A Cardigan This Fall

Editor’s note: You’ve surely seen this hashtag lots of different places, including on Instagram. But how does that carry over to real life? The #OOTD will take one great item and put together a versatile, stylish outfit around it. Look for past features here.

Here we are, back from a weekend trip to Providence and ready to dive into another #OOTD on everyone’s favorite menswear blog. If you haven’t caught on by now, layering up for breezy fall weather can be fun and enjoyable — whereas dressing for a blustery snowstorm is done more out of necessity, there’s nothing quite like throwing on a few extra layers just because you can. Particularly when one of those layers is a stylish cardigan, perfect for late October weather. Keep in mind that a shawl cardigan would work for fall weather as well, but we’ve added a bit more to the look below. If you pick up the right style — trim-fitting and textured– you can pair it with just about anything (including a durable chore coat). And that gives you plenty of leeway to rock other seasonal style staples (say that five times fast), like a classic poplin shirt, slim black denim and … of course … tough leather boots. We won’t give it all away up here though — scroll down to get the scoop on this #menswear look.  And for more daily style inspiration, hit up yours truly on Instagram.

Layering a cotton cardigan with pieces equal parts rugged and refined for the fall season.

Layering a cotton cardigan with pieces equal parts rugged and refined for the fall season.

The Cardigan: Dockers Premium Cotton Cardigan Sweater, $98 — Why go with a cotton cardigan in late October? Because it’s blended with cashmere, has some nice texture and can be easily layered over top of (see below for more, folks).

The Coat: Apolis Selvage Denim Chore Coat, $228 — This rough-and-tumble denim chore coat is an exclusive piece for Huckberry, and that means you & I are all the better for it. Made in California from Cone Mills denim, it’ll age beautifully the more you wear it. Shop away.
Buck Mason - Timeless Design. Made in America.

The Shirt: Big Flower Stretch Poplin Shirt, $125 — Given the fact that we’re layering just a bit, you want a shirt that moves well, fits comfortably and looks great. Enter this classic stretch poplin shirt; pair it with charcoal chinos and this same cardigan sans chore coat if it gets a bit warm.

The Denim: Cheap Monday Sonic Jeans, $90 (Available via East Dane) — When you’ve got a variety of textures up top, it’s best to keep your denim simple. In this case, a no-frills pair of black denim gets the job done & contrasts with the blue selvage denim chore coat. Don’t forget a textured leather belt, yeah?

The Boots: Thursday Boots Brown Wingtip Boots, $220 — If you thought the folks at Thursday Boots were done making stellar, affordably priced boots — well, you were wrong. These stunners are perfect for fall. Worried about mixing brown and black? This casual outfit makes that less of a problem.

The Socks: CHUP Missouri Socks,$38 — “Nearly $40 for socks? Isn’t that a bit much, Beau?” Well … yes, yes it is. But rather than buying disposable, cheap socks by the dozen, you could snag the CHUP Missouri Sock from Huckberry and be set for the season.

The Watch: Lum-Tec Special Edition Combat B30 Bronze Watch, $899.98 — So, first things first — this Lum-Tec watch is a tad bit pricey, to say the least. But it’s a beautifully crafted, durable field watch that’s as suitable for the office as it is for your next fall adventure.

The Everyday Carry: Taylor Stitch Raw Brass Keyhook, $32 — Do you necessarily need a made-in-America, raw brass keyhook? Well, it’s not a matter of life or death. But it makes keeping track of your keys a whole lot more enjoyable.

And, well … there you have it, folks. Taking a premium cotton-cashmere cardigan from an unexpected source (that would be the chino purveyors at Dockers) and blending it with simple denim and a comfortable stretch poplin shirt can set you up for all kinds of versatile style situations this fall. From a casual Friday at the office to a day in class where you just want to look a bit more put together than the dude next to you, this outfit’s got it all. Hey, you’d be OK with cheap beer for a bit if it means you look great, right? Just me? Ahh, well. And the durable wingtip boots add quite a bit of polish to the whole ensemble, while the selvage denim chore coat serves as both a durable piece of outerwear and a fine addition to the rest of your seasonal wardrobe. Oh, and while that tough-as-nails Lum-Tec watch is just a  wee bit pricey, it’ll perform all the better given the extra investment. How would you wear your cardigan this fall? Still need one? Circle back around to our picks for the top cardigans for fall when you get the chance.

Until tomorrow’s post — stay stylish,

-Beau

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Online Shopping Picks: The Best Men’s Cardigans for Cold Weather

Editor’s note: Click through for a full set of menswear shopping picks.

In recent weeks, things have really picked up in terms of fall style preparations in my neck of the woods — if you’re into menswear, that probably means it’s been much the same for you. A late September weekend in New York City really brought with it the first slight hints of fall, and slight seasonal changes should remind us of all of gear we need for the chillier months ahead. In the case of today’s latest Online Shopping Picks post, that means we’re talking about a valuable sweater style to keep on-hand — and wear plenty — during fall and winter. What’s that style, you ask? It’s the ever-versatile modern man’s sweater — the cardigan. Whether cut in soft cotton-cashmere or premium merino, or with a more substantial shawl collar, a stylish cardigan is a nice hybrid style that fits in seamlessly with more tailored or more casual looks. Want to go more dressed up? Throw on a slim cotton-cashmere cardigan in place of your blazer with a wool tie and crisp dress shirt. Want to stay casual? Take that same cardigan and pair it with a long-sleeve henley and a durable, essential pair of sturdy selvedge denim for your off-duty hours. The picks below come in at price points low and high, and feature style that’s minimal and tailored — as well as casual and rugged. If you haven’t bought a cardigan for fall and winter, consider this the perfect starting point.

#1. JackThreads Fair Isle Cardigan — $79

A neutral base livened up with a visually interesting Fair Isle pattern.

A neutral base livened up with a visually interesting Fair Isle pattern.

Quick, what brand makes all manner of essential goods for every season? At nice, low prices? It’s JackThreads — and this cardigan is a big-time winner in that regard. The brand keeps taking steps forward as far as its products go — pieces like this Fair Isle cardigan nod toward trends without being too over-the-top. The fabric quality and fit should be reliable and modern, and the tan base should help it play nicely off navy chinos or grey flannel trousers — yes, it’s almost flannel season!

#2. J. Crew Cotton-Cashmere Cardigan Sweater — $74.50

Nothing too fancy about this sweater -- but with fabric this nice, it doesn't need to overdo it.

Nothing too fancy about this sweater — but with fabric this nice, it doesn’t need to overdo it.

Like JackThreads, J. Crew consistently comes up with fresh takes on wardrobe staples no matter the season. Although some of those creations can lean quite expensive, this cotton-cashmere cardigan is the definition of an everyday sweater at a low price. If you keep a weather eye out for sales and deals, you could snag it even cheaper. As it stands now though, a slim burgundy cardigan from a reputable brand is something every guy can put to good use. Team up this cardigan with a blue Oxford, slim tan chinos and high-top sneakers for a bit of sporty, retro style.

#3. Grayers Shore Club Cotton Cardigan in Navy Heather — $93.75

A cotton cardigan can still work in the fall -- just pair with a slim henley and cold-weather accessories.

A cotton cardigan can still work in the fall — just pair with a slim henley and cold-weather accessories.

Have you had your fill yet of navy sweaters? Hope not. Grayers’ fabric quality is top-notch (which explains the Grayers x SeaVees sneaker collab), and that’s the case with this easygoing navy heather cardigan. With details like a chest pocket and dual hip pockets, plus that heathered fabric, it’s going to wear easily over a slub pocket T-shirt with olive chinos and a pair of durable moc toe boots — like the ones seen in this #OOTD. It’s the perfect cardigan for weekend coffee runs — and you’ll be the sharpest guy in the place.

#4. Todd Snyder Shawl Cardigan — $157.50 (Available via East Dane)

If you're not a Todd Snyder fan, get on board -- this cardigan is but one example of his excellent work.

If you’re not a Todd Snyder fan, get on board — this cardigan is but one example of his excellent work.

It’s tough not to be a huge fan of what Mr. Snyder has done for casual, rugged menswear — right? The designer’s collaborations — from the Timex x Todd Snyder partnership to his work on P.F. Flyers sneakers — merge menswear’s past with modern fits, a dash of Americana and all-around terrific style. So, it should come as no surprise that his knitwear knocks it out of the park. A midweight jersey fabric is complemented by a faded indigo wash — that combo means it’ll stand out stylishly even up against dark blue denim. And while you could style it with an essential chambray shirt and tan chinos, it’s going to be at its best with a vintage team T-shirt during your next football game.

#5. Rag & Bone Standard Issue Avery Shawl Cardigan — $275 (Available via East Dane)

A strong silhouette, neutral color and luxury fabric make this cardigan worth the investment.

A strong silhouette, neutral color and luxury fabric make this cardigan worth the investment.

Did you think we’d make it out of this post without at least one eye-popping splurge? Not a chance. Some of us aren’t necessarily into brands that skew more heavily toward minimal high fashion — Rag & Bone is one such brand, yet they always temper that approach with military styling, classic colors and beautiful fabrics. This navy knit shawl cardigan has a lot going on visually — the shawl collar, front hip patch pockets and textured fabric — but it’s done so in a pleasing way (with a strong silhouette to boot). When teamed with a red plaid shirt, you’re getting a look that’s heritage-inspired and fall-appropriate without going too far overboard.

With any of the above cardigans, you’re checking some key fall #menswear criteria — 1) Warmth and solid layering potential. 2) Visual interest — in the form of a shawl collar or a slim dress cardigan. 3) Plenty of styling versatility — crucial when you want to switch things up from a stylish fall or winter blazer. And while some of the above price points stray upward a bit, it’s worth it to make an investment now — especially when you can wear a nice cardigan all through winter (even the Grayers cotton cardigan can be layered under a winter topcoat when snow hits). If you suspect you might get funny looks or comparisons to everyone’s favorite neighbor, rest assured that the cardigan is a modern style move — take the plunge, y’all! If you have suggestions for other stylish men’s cardigans, check out The Style Guide on Facebook.