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12 Ways to Style a Pullover Sweater

November 14, 2019

I find myself reaching for a pullover sweater almost every day at this point. It’s cold out there, y’all! But wearing one pullover sweater after another starts looking and feeling a little monotonous if I don’t take some care. So today let’s commit not just to wear pullover sweaters this winter. Instead, let’s style them! Today I’m sharing a dozen ways to style a pullover sweater, and I guarantee they’ll elevate your outfits and make you feel and look oh so snazzy.

12 Ways to Style a Pullover Sweater

I’m starting with a basic brown v-neck pullover sweater I purchased in the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale this summer. Of course, my sweater is sold out, but this is the same sweater but in different colors. And here’s a shopping widget with a few other similar styles. Remember, most of these are available in several other colors.

Don’t just wear a pullover sweater…

12 Ways to Style a Pullover Sweater instead of just wearing it 0
similar pullover sweater (more in the widget below) // jeans // boots // tote bag

Sure, the outfit above is perfectly lovely. But we can do better with very little effort. I’ve got a dozen ways to style a pullover sweater and they’re all inexpensive and effortless really. It’s just a matter of taking the time and thinking beyond “getting dressed.”

The following ideas are not rocket science. Ha! But let me show you 12 ways to elevate this simple look.

Style a Pullover Sweater with any of these Simple Tips

#1 – Layer your sweater over a button up shirt. Here I’ve added a colorful and warm flannel shirt. But you could also just wear your pullover with a white or other solid button up shirt.

12 Ways to Style a Pullover Sweater instead of just wearing it
add a button up shirt and earrings and similar bracelet

#2 – Let the hem of your button up shirt peak out from beneath your pullover sweater. I wish I’d pulled my sweater down a little better in the front for this photo, but you get the picture. In fact, we’re all familiar with this look. But, especially with a colorful shirt like this one, letting a little of the hem show is such an easy way to add some style to your sweater and jeans.

let hem peak out from underneath sweater
button up shirt

#3 – Add a zip-up vest to your pullover sweater. A zip up vest over your sweater can add a splash of color and interesting texture. But if it is cold, this triple layered look will keep you toasty warm, too.

Add a vest to your pullover sweater
Fleece Lined Quilted Vest

#4 – Wear a blazer over your pullover sweater. I’ve put a pretty burgundy, corduroy blazer over my sweater. But even a black blazer will elevate your sweater and jeans look. Adding a blazer adds structure to an otherwise comfy look, but it doesn’t take away the softness. So this is a great way to transition your casual look to a dressier vibe.

Wear a blazer over your pullover sweater
corduroy blazer

#5 – Wear a belt bag over your pullover sweater. Not only are belt bags easy to wear, versatile and stylish, but they add interest to an outfit in a way a regular satchel or shoulder bag just can’t. This faux leather belt bag from Target is large enough to hold your essentials and adds casual style to your sweater ensemble.

Wear a Belt Bag
faux leather belt bag

#6 – Add a chunky chain necklace. Some dainty necklaces can get lost in all the texture of a pullover sweater, and you end up looking like you tried but failed to add a little style. So I find it best to wear a chunky chain necklace (similar) with a pullover sweater. They’re trending right now and they look more intentional and yet effortless, too.

12 Ways to Style a Pullover Sweater instead of just wearing it 06
similar tortoise chain necklace

#7 – Front tuck your pullover sweater and add an interesting belt. Adding a front tuck can really help with proportions as long as you’re not short waisted. It makes your outfit look so much neater and pulled together. You can wear a pretty black or brown leather or faux leather belt. But you can add interest and texture with an animal print here.

Tuck and belt your sweater
animal print belt

By the way, I intentionally left the necklace off in this look because I think it would be too much going on to wear the large earrings and the leopard print belt with a large necklace. So do be careful about overdoing your accessories with your sweater. Add too much and you end up looking like you’re trying too hard. Err on the side of minimalism for a more sophisticated look.

#8 – Tuck in your pullover sweater all the way around. I don’t prefer this look on myself since it adds volume around my hips where I’m already a little wide. But you simply have to play around with this look.It might look wonderful on you! You don’t have to tuck your sweater in tight either. A loose full tuck looks pulled together but cool and casual.

Full tuck with pullover sweater

#9 – Wear a turtleneck under your pullover sweater. This is my favorite look of the twelve. In fact, I’m wearing this black turtleneck right now with a different pullover. While you can go with a different color turtleneck, a black turtleneck will almost always work. And the splashes of black in the neck and sleeve cuffs add a touch of sophistication to the look. Notice I put the necklace back on for this look, but it’s optional.

Wear a turtleneck underneath your pullover sweater
black turtleneck

#10 – Push up your sleeves. Yes, even just pushing up your sleeves will add style to your pullover sweater and jeans look. In fact, pushed up sleeves communicate confidence and a can-do attitude without much effort. I meant to show this look with the shirt under the sweater, too. Then I would push up the sweater sleeves and turn up the cuffs of the shirt. Now that is chic!

#11 – Wear a colorful scarf around your neck with your pullover sweater. You can also go with a longer or textured scarf, but I especially love the feminine touch of a silk neck scarf with a textured pullover sweater. This silk scarf from last season even has little touches of brown in it, but the real object here is to add a splash of pretty color. I like the way this particular scarf looks with the leopard print belt, too.

Add a scarf to your pullover sweater
similar silk neck scarf

#12 – Go all out with accessories and a top layer. While I certainly wouldn’t combine all of the above style tips for one look, you can certainly mix and match. I think the scarf, belt and vest all work well together with the pushed up sleeves. Bottom line? Layer on some style elements and then take a critical look in the mirror. If something looks off or it appears you have too much going on, just start removing elements until you have a look that pleases the eye.

Go all out

But remember, we’re agreeing that this year we won’t just wear a pullover sweater! Instead we’ll consider these and other ways to style a pullover sweater. And yes, there are definitely additional ways you can style your sweaters. For instance, in this previous post I just wore a plain t-shirt under my sweater and let it show at the neck and hem.

BONUS!!! I’m adding one more look from this later blog post. Here I simply added a denim shirt underneath the sweater and added my leopard print coat. Click through to the blog post for all the shopping and styling details.

How to Feel Warm and Look Stylish this Winter
Check out this post.

I’ve collected all the styling elements used in this post in the shopping widget below. But I also have a wide selection of beautiful but basic sweaters in the widget. (For the most up-to-date offering of sweaters, use the widget at the top of the post!) All of these would work beautifully with these style tips above. Enjoy!

Save + Share

If you enjoyed today’s post, I hope you’ll save it to one of your Pinterest boards. Oh, and share it with your friends on Facebook, too. I love it when new readers find Dressed for My Day because you’ve shared what you found! You’ll find share buttons just below the scripture in the Blessed for My Day portion of the post. And Pinterest buttons should appear when you hover over the following graphic (or any of the graphics in this post).

Blessed for My Day

Some people mistakenly believe that Christians are people who live by a long list of do’s and don’ts. But hopefully you and I know that Christians are people who have been saved by grace and who continue to live in the freedom of that grace. We’re not checking boxes or steering clear of taboos. Instead, we walk in the wide open space of the freedom Christ bought us with His shed blood.

But just because we have room to move through life freely doesn’t mean we should abuse that freedom by doing anything and everything our flesh draws us to. There are some things better left unsaid. There are places my feet don’t need to go. There are activities that don’t serve me well and relationships that would bring more trouble than good in the long run. Today let’s ask God to give us wisdom to know how to use the freedom He has granted us to His glory, for our own good and to the edification of those who are watching us so carefully.

For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God. ~ 1 Peter 2:15-16

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xoxo, Kay
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15 thoughts on “12 Ways to Style a Pullover Sweater

  1. There is one more way that you could have styled your sweater. I live in what seems to be the frozen tundra of South Dakota. We have had single digit temps here since late October! Because of those temperatures, I have grown to love blanket scarves! With that said, I loved all your suggestions today.

  2. Who knew there were so many different ways to elevate a basic pull over sweater! My favorite is the button down underneath and chunky chain necklace. I’d push up the sleeves and cuff them as you suggested. Thanks Kay!

  3. Such clever looks Kay! Love each one of these! I wear sweaters pretty much all the time when it’s “winter coat weather”, so these are great tips and ideas. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Thanks so much for all the great styling tips, I love this post.
    I don’t see the shopping widget, am I missing something?

  5. I love all of the ways you styled the sweater! The bright pink vest is something I didn’t consider but looks great. Enjoyed your post today. Thank you ?

  6. Wonderful ideas for elevating an outfit when wearing a pullover sweater. My two favorites are with the plaid shirt and black turtleneck underneath. Last Friday I had on a pair of nice jeans and a pullover sweater in one of my best colors. The outfit looked okay, however, when I added a slim fitting puffer vest, the outfit looked complete! Have a fabulous day!

  7. I love this post. Here on the coast, we live in sweaters and jeans and rarely need an outside cost so this is very helpful.

  8. I like the blazer over the sweater look. I like structure but have a hard time with sleeves fitting under a jacket. I shop at Talbots often and find it a recurring issue. I tried on the jacket you styled. Were you comfortable wearing the thick sweater under the jacket? Being petite I can look sloppy if sleeves/jacket are
    too large which would occur if I sized up.

    1. Hmm. I do have trouble with arm comfort in jackets sometimes too. But all the ones I showed here (and all that I own) work fine for me. I don’t generally have a problem with Talbots jackets. And the sweater I’m wearing in the last photo is fairly thin. Just a basic cashmere thickness. So it’s fine. But I wouldn’t be able to wear a chunky sweater with that jacket. Hope that helps. By the way, are you trying the petite size jackets because I would assume they would have shorter sleeve lengths. But remember to size up one size in petite from what you wear in a Missy. Also you can have sleeves hemmed fairly reasonably as long as there is room before the first button hole.