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More Is More: Layered Outfits for Fall and Winter

More Is More: Layered Outfits for Fall and Winter  As soon as the weather gets cold, you can count on two things: Christmas songs playing way too early and fashion...

More Is More: Layered Outfits for Fall and Winter 

As soon as the weather gets cold, you can count on two things: Christmas songs playing way too early and fashion articles about "the secrets of layering." These articles insist that a perfect set of conditions will make the most cold-weather-proof, grandma-sweater-filled outfits look sleekly Parisian and effortlessly cool.

The real secret? Layering is not that deep, you guys. It's just wearing clothes on top of other clothes. In fact, the preoccupation with the "rules" of layering may be holding your sense of style back, because wearing half your closet at once is one of the most fun things you can do in winter without any risk of frostbite. Put together maximalist layered outfits this fall and winter. After all, more layers mean more ways to express your sense of style.

4 Tips for Layered Outfits

Most layered outfits suffer from holding back too much. If you over-coordinate the layers, colors and volume, the entire look becomes one-note. Think of these tips as anti-rules for layering: things to keep in mind but ultimately do whatever you want with.

1. Pay Attention to Texture

Just like with food, different textures make a layered outfit interesting. One big texture can feel out of place in an otherwise flat outfit, so think about the texture of every piece in your layered look.

The louder the texture, the more you need to turn up the volume on the entire outfit to match. Place big and attention-grabbing textures, such as a Mongolian faux fur coat, with another interesting texture such as a chunky knit. You can also pair a loud visual texture with a bold print to keep the energy up.

2. Don't Be Afraid of Volume

Take the word "bulky" out of your vocabulary when coming up with layered outfit ideas. Avoiding volume is impossible unless your idea of a layered look is overlapping sets of silk pajamas (and if it is, must be nice to live somewhere warm).

Embrace the high-impact silhouette of a big, voluminous outfit to open up your layering horizons. A big sweater dress and a puffy coat are both excellent winter picks, and what's wrong with taking up some serious space?

3. Keep the Inside Layer Light

The ultimate way to keep warm is to carefully choose your innermost layer. A good thermal layer is thinner and tighter than you might think, with a fabric that holds heat close to the body. Invest in a few comfy cotton stretch turtlenecks, and you can layer like Keke Palmer in this adorable turtleneck-jumpsuit look.

4. Layer Accessories, Too

Don't limit your layering to just clothes. Wearing thin necklaces over chunky necklaces, layering different textured socks and even stacking more than one belt can take a layered outfit to the next level. 

5 Layered Outfit Ideas

With those tips in mind, here are five ideas for layered outfits you can try this winter.

1. Stack Your Sweaters

Sweaters are better together. Put a cable knit cardigan over a more demure knit to contrast texture and stay extra warm. Don't stop there — a sweater dress over knit leggings could always use a big scarf, hat or even more knit pieces on top.

The key to wearing sweaters on sweaters is to pick contrasting knits and keep a fun color scheme. Think fall, mustard and spice or pops of color instead of layering pure neutrals.

2. Wear a Long Skirt or Dress Over Pants

Fall dresses over menswear-styled work pants make for an edgy winter look that's surprisingly practical. While long skirts are coming back into fashion, it can be tricky to style them without channeling a schoolmarm from the turn of the century. Wearing them over a pair of traditional work pants with chunky combat boots is the perfect style contrast to make these pieces modern.

3. Pick a Bold Contrast Layer

Add a sense of surprise to your neutral and casual layering look by throwing one out-there layer into the mix. This can be a traditional men's button-down not usually seen in women's fall and winter fashion. It could also be an eye-catching print, such as one leopard print or patterned sequin layer in the middle of a black-and-tan-themed outfit. For maximum intrigue, only let a sliver of the standout layer peek through the rest of the outfit.

4. Put Blazers Over Anything

One common concern with layered outfits is that multiple warm, comfy layers can make you look "shapeless." While "cozy mass of soft fabric" is a perfectly valid fashion shape, one way to add more structure is to put a blazer on as the top layer.

The current trend for oversized blazers makes this style hack easy. Simply put a structured blazer over a pillowy sweatshirt or soft sweater, like Kendall Jenner in this laid-back layered outfit. The right jacket expertly contrasts textures and adds a few hard lines back into any layered look.

5. Go Monochrome to the Max

If you really want to wear basically everything you own at once, going monochromatic is a great way to make even the most over-the-top layering cohesive. Since there's no color contrast, use as much textural, silhouette and pattern contrast as you can to make one color as decadent as possible.

Different color choices will have a variety of style impacts. An all-neutral look relies even more on textures and details to make things interesting. For an understated monochromatic outfit that still has some color, try a denim blue or warm red color scheme. A full look in a loud color such as orange or pink is hard to pull off, but if you have enough pieces in your signature color, your layering will be unstoppable.

The Best Sweaters, Blazers and More for All Your Layered Outfits

Is your closet a little light on interesting patterned and textured layers? Statement pieces can work well on their own or as part of an intricate layered outfit. At Kate Hewko, we believe in having fun with style and abandoning the typical layering "rules." Browse our collection of layering-friendly pieces to find the new stars of your fall and winter wardrobe.


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