Just a quick PSA: if you’ve been wearing the same gray crewneck sweater since November of last year, it’s probably time for an update. The same goes for that black turtleneck that you’ve been layering under everything. Your favorite basics might keep you warm year after year, but these 2021 sweater trends will keep you looking way more stylish.
If you’re anything like me, you live for the thrill of adding a few new pieces into your usual rotation at the start of every season. During the winter, those new items are usually a new sweater or two (or three). While last year was a bit of a wash when it came to fashion—hello, wearing the same hoodie everyday—I’m determined to make more effort in 2021. Ordering a few new sweaters means I’ll still be able to look cute on my Zoom meetings, while also wearing my favorite pair of sweatpants just out of frame. Nobody needs to know!
There are seven major trends that I have my eye on this season, and if you haven’t seen these pieces all over your Instagram feed just yet, you’re about to. From preppy sweater vests and sporty quarter zips to cut-outs and maxi cardigans, all of these trends will fit perfectly into your wardrobe when styled correctly. Case in point: I already have three sweater vests hanging in my closet, and that’s not just because a Gossip Girl reboot is coming and I wanted to live my prep school fantasy.
Read on for the top seven sweater trends worth shopping this season, plus our favorite picks you can buy right now.
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The Prep School Half-Zip
Collared knits and half-zips give any sweater a more polished feel, and this WAYF option comes in five different colorways, so you can pair it with any fall or winter look while blasting “Red (Taylor’s Version)” and pretending you’re in a music video.
The Longline Sweater Vest
Last year, Harry Styles inspired the return of the sweater vest. This season, longline vented vests are in for styling over dresses and skirts, often belted to help define the waist. This Eloquii pick is a perfect option for plus shoppers wanting to rock the style without looking like they raided a men’s department store.
Super-cropped half-sweaters and accompanying tanks are still in from last winter, so if you don’t have a set already, it’s time to get one. This look takes a totally covered-up knitwear moment and adds a little ~spice~ that won’t leave you freezing during a cold winter date.
The Fur-Trimmed Maxi Cardi
Remember that one fur-trimmed House of Sunny cardi that went viral on TikTok last year? This Show Me Your Mumu maxi cardigan is her classier older sister. Long cardigans in general are all the rage this season, so snuggle up in something chic that feels like wearing a Snuggie. Fur trim is another popular trend, so this baby has the best of both worlds.
The Going-Out Knit
Sweaters! Can! Be! Worn! To! Happy! Hour! Cut-outs aren’t just for bodycon dresses and crop tops—and this chic little number is proof! Showing a little skin without putting it all on display is a great way to look hot even in the colder months, so don’t be afraid to opt for asymmetry and rock the unexpected.
The Chunky Patterned Cardi
Remember last year when fitted cardis-as-tops were all the rage? This year, more relaxed, chunky cardigans worn open are in, and the bolder and brighter the layering piece, the better. This checkerboard cardi courtesy of Free People comes in three fun colorways to breathe life into your winter wardrobe.
Kitschy sweaters for fall and winter play a key role in Princess Diana’s sartorial preferences, so it’s no surprise they’re still in. Want a sweater she actually wore? This Gyles & George I’m A Luxury Sweater for Rowing Blazers is a luxury you can afford.