Dress up Your Cardigan Sweaters

Sweater cardigans worn a variety of ways.

Cardigan Sweaters for Any Ages: Under a Dress

Quote of the day: “Do one thing every day that scares you.” Anonymous

I love this quote! Because I know how we all get into our comfort zones with everything, and not that it’s terrible. But how can you grow and change if you don’t experiment and try the “scary” things??

The last crazy way I imagined to wear our cardigans is shown here under a dress! Now this could be beneficial for a couple of reasons. One, obviously, to keep warm, yet not cover up the dress like you normally would by putting the cardigan on top! And two, it could be a way to wear your cardigan if, by chance, it’s a little small. You wouldn’t see gaping between the buttons, at least the way my mom & I are showing them!!

And if you’re looking for other ways to style a cardigan that aren’t boring, check out how we wore them backwards, here, and how we styled them under a vest, here.

Don’t forget to scroll to the bottom of the post, because I have another reader who got involved in the action!!

Jodie’s (50’s) Outfit: Here’s that slip dress that I wore for our tweed jacket series the end of last year, here. I told myself I would figure out how to wear it, since it has gone unloved for almost 10 years! Therefore, I thought wearing my cardigan under it would be brilliant.

Sweater cardigans worn a variety of ways.

However, to be honest, I don’t love the color combination. In my closet, the dress seemed to have more burgundy in it—can you see the burgundy in the shadows of the rose petals? Then again, maybe it’s more of a dark red, instead of burgundy? Because in the photos, it does seem to clash somewhat. Then again, we could just say I did it on purpose, like when I combined red & burgundy here!

Sweater cardigans worn a variety of ways.

Now I wore the cardigan backwards (like in our first rendition, here) because the buttons seemed to detract from the overall look. The bronze necklace is to bring out the goldish/bronze in the dress. And they are hard to see, but the earrings are the same copper color!

Sweater cardigans worn a variety of ways.

I wore this outfit to an open house for a friend’s new place!! So even if I did look a little unmatching, she knows me well enough to realize it’s the inside that counts! Ha ha!

Sweater cardigans worn a variety of ways.

Dress: Arden B (similar here a pricey version or here much less expensive (and check out how they are wearing it))~~Cardigan: Simply Vera (similar here)~~Boots: Shoe Mint (similar here)~~Necklace: Mauzies (similar here also pricey or here more my price range)~~Earrings: Mauzies (similar here)~~Bracelet: (similar here)

Nancy’s (60’s) Outfit: The cardigan sweater of Nancy’s that we picked for this series happened to be short sleeved. That fact, put a little bit of a wrench in our styling. I mean, I couldn’t let her freeze just for the blog, could I?

Sweater cardigans worn a variety of ways.

Therefore, I layered the sweater under her long sleeved, shirt dress, but had her wear the dress open like a duster. It’s still wearing her cardigan under her dress, right? We all styled our shirt dresses this way last year in the post, here.

Sweater cardigans worn a variety of ways.

I tried layering two of her necklaces to show the pearls and be able to have the pendant involved too. It might have looked better with the pearl necklace on top of the other necklace?

Sweater cardigans worn a variety of ways.

Nancy went shoe shopping without me just recently (can you believe it??) and picked up these olive green wedges. For those of you who don’t love heels, I think wedges are an easy way to have height yet not feel unsteady!

Sweater cardigans worn a variety of ways

Dress: WomAn (similar here)~~Jeans: Chaps (similar here)~~Cardigan: Norton (similar here)~~Shoes: Chinese Laundry (similar here in other colors)~~Belt: H&M (similar here)~~Necklace: (similar here layered for you)~~Earrings: (similar here)

Charlotte’s (70’s) Outfit: So I showed myself wearing a slip dress, and Nancy wearing a shirt dress. Thus I had to incorporate more variety with mom wearing a different kind of dress. Moms is a shift dress and I think this type of dress can be one of the most adaptable dresses to have in your closet. Since they are more straight up and down, it’s easier to add layers on top or underneath.

Sweater cardigans worn a variety of ways.

Mom wanted to try out this new scarf clip she just bought. It’s a pin that has a chain link attached for the scarf. Maybe I’m not using it correctly, because I still ended up having to knot the scarf in order for it to stay.

Sweater cardigans worn a variety of ways.

We added in the purse for a little bit of whimsey!! This purse’s chain handle can be long (like in the first photo of this section) or it can be wrapped around the flap to make it shorter. Mom said that she came up with this idea—so for those of you that have a chain linked handle purse like this; you could possibly do this trick!

Sweater cardigans worn a variety of ways.

I had mom wear her ankle boots with this outfit although it’s not her favorite look. However, ever since the blog post about ankle boots and dresses, here, I feel like it’s a more modern look than always wearing tall boots! Especially since it was a relatively warmer day this day!!

Sweater cardigans worn a variety of ways.

Dress: Styleworks (similar here)~~Cardigan: Nine West-thrifted (similar here)~~Boots: Madeline Stuart (similar here a little taller)~~Scarf: (similar here)~~Earrings: (similar here)~~Bracelet: (similar here)~~Purse: (similar here or here)

Karen (blogette): I was so excited when Karen commented on the last post about styling our cardigans under our vests. She said that she was going to try this idea with her sleeveless dress! Luckily, she was game to send me a photo and join in on the fun!

In Karen’s words: I chose my mustard colored sweater and added the scarf to dress up the neckline.  I now have a new outfit without spending a dime! Before you suggested styling cardigans in new ways, I never would have worn these things together!  For the record,  I’m 63!

I really appreciate the fact that you take the time to read my blog. Thanks again and feel free to comment with your thoughts!! If there are any other women who would like to be a “blogette,” feel free to email me.

Nancy’s photography by Kari Strand Photography

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Can you imagine a cardigan under these dresses?

  • Michelle Leslie

    I love the look Jodie, that slip dress is gorgeous. I love the big bold print and the colors. So many lovely ideas to style a cardigan too. I need ti haul mine out from the back of the closet and rethink things a little

    • Jodie Filogomo

      It’s true that our poor little cardigans don’t always get the love they deserve!!
      I’m so glad you liked this post, Michelle…thanks for the kind words!!

  • Jess Jess

    Your mom looks super chic in her outfit, I’m digging it!! And I love Karen’s selection of mustard with that scarf!

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks so much Jess!! Your comment will make my mom smile!!

  • Austin Hodgens

    I do see a lot of cardigans here in Maine because it’s always so darn cold. Perhaps you need to visit and help dress my fellow Mainers a little better. It might make the long, dreadful winters a little easier to tolerate. 🙂

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Ahhhh—-you’re an East Coaster!! That’s where that humor comes from!
      There has got to be some stylish people in Maine, right? 🙂
      Or is there the thought that style is fluff? Because I’m all about showing how dressing great can make you feel great—which translate to a better everything else (most of the time) !!
      But I’ll do my part and venture out into the wilderness for a fashion class or two!! All for you, Austin!!

  • I like all of these looks! Never would have thought of wearing a cardigan this way and it makes me want to try it.

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Molly!!
      In a way, I figured it was no different than wearing a t-shirt under a dress, which I see quite often in the advertisements!!
      Happy Weekend!!

  • Never considered wearing a cardigan underneath, but it works – these are great looks!

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks!! I know sometimes I get a little crazy in trying out different ways to style an item. but I really thought this is one I’d wear again (although with my dress, definitely a different colored cardigan!!)

  • Linda Hobden

    Am loving that dress Jodie! 😊👍

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Linda!! I’m so glad I rescued it from the giveaway pile. Now that I know I can layer under it!!

  • There are some seriously cute outfit suggestions in this post! 🙂

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Monica!!

  • I love your mother’s bracelet! As a woman with curves I can’t imagine a sweater under a dress…no extra bulk needed…but I see how it can work for other body types. You ladies look lovely.

    • Jodie Filogomo

      I hear you, Anna! But you know, I’m always one to play the devil’s advocate…and it makes me wonder if it’s much different than wearing a cardigan over your dress? I guess you could keep the cardigan open to create a longer line when it’s on top?
      Both my mom & Nancy would consider themselves curvy too. In fact, when I’ve written a couple of articles for Sixty + Me using the 3 of us as models, I’ve had some comments that the models are thin. I know that makes Nancy & mom laugh because they are always working on their weight! So it reminds me that everyone’s perspective is different!! 🙂

  • Mimi

    I love the 60’s look! Such style! It would look good on all 3 age groups.

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Mimi!! I have found that wearing a shirt dress as a duster works wonderfully. I do it all the time now!!

  • I have never thought about using a cardigan under a dress, but I have to admit seeing the pictures that I like it!!

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Pili!!

  • Is that snow I see in the background? You must be freezing!! Love the dress too! I have to say I really love love love the 50’s boots and clutch bag too. They are gorgeous! Thanks for linking up with us on #FabFridayPost

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Yes Su—we definitely still have snow here in Colorado! In fact, usually March & April are our snowiest months. The nice thing is there are still many days that are relatively warm. In saying that—I was a tad chilly without my coat for these photos—but luckily we took them fast!!
      Thanks so much for supporting the linkers that come to your party!! It’s so much fun that way!!

  • Debbie Stinedurf

    I have always loved that quote too…it’s a good reminder to not get too comfortable. I also love your slip dress; that print is fabulous my friend! And who says we have to match?!

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Exactly!!! Thanks Debbie!!

  • Melissa Ruddy

    Love the way you created a new look on something that was sitting in your closet. Very creative. Inspired me to look in my closet and see if I can make something new.

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Melissa for such a nice comment!!
      I have been finding so much enjoyment in creating new looks without having to spend a ton of money!! Thanks for stopping by and letting me know your thoughts!

  • You are all looking so glam in these photos! What a great way to style the slip dress. Love it! Thank you for linking up for Celebrating Style. It means a lot xx

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Laurie!!
      And to think I thought I’d never wear a slip dress at this age? Goes to show we need to keep an open mind, right?

  • I love these comparisons. Some wild combos, too! I am over from over the moon linky.

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks for stopping by Carol. I recognize you from the FB group I used to join in on!!

  • Liz

    Super cute way to mix things up! I’d just be worried about adding any bulk to my frame…

    • Jodie Filogomo

      I totally get that Liz! At least for these outfits, I picked out thin cardigans. And I do wonder if it’s any different than putting a cardigan over the dress? That would be a good experiment!!
      Thanks for stopping by!!

  • Sarah Stockley

    Wow, the cardigan under the dress looks great. I have noticed pinifore dresses seem to be back in fashion too – these would look great with a jumper underneath. Sarah #FabFridayPost

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Sarah!
      You’re absolutely right about the pinafore dresses—it’s a great way to add a layer of warmth to them!!
      Thanks for stopping by!

  • Jacqueline Rendine

    Love these! What a great way to get multiple ways to wear a cardigan!
    Stylin In St. Louis

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Jacqueline!!

  • Love the scarf clip! Pretty and practical!

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Michele!

  • I always get so inspired by you three! Jodie – that floral dress you’re wearing is sooooo great. Thanks for sharing all the looks with Vis Monday, xox


    • Jodie Filogomo

      That’s such a wonderful thing to read, Patti!! Thanks so much!!

  • Jodie you look darling in this post! As usual! Your moms look beautiful. I love all your cardi ideas and even took a leopard one out of my closet with sparkly buttons to wear backwards with jeans soon! Have a great week! Peace!

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Cheryl!! 🙂

  • Rina Doria

    I love that you styled the cardigan sweaters under your dresses! Such an inventive and innovative way to wear cardigans! You all look so beautiful!

    Rina Samantha

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks so much Rina!! It’s fun to change it up occasionally!

  • You all look lovely! What a gorgeous slip dress and it’s a good idea to wear it over a cardigan (backwards) or top. I see the touch of burgundy in the roses, but it is is hard to notice from a distance, still, it’s a fun look. I have worn my cardigans backwards, something I learned from my mom, she often did that. I’ve never done a post about it. Someday I should and I’d love to include you! 🙂



    • Jodie Filogomo

      That would be fun Carmen!!
      It is funny how many women commented on the first post of the series when we all wore our cardigans backwards, how many of them did that back in the 60’s. It’s true how styles come around again & again!!
      Thanks for stopping by!!

  • Vettae-Fee Kling

    That are nice ideas. I far prefer the 3rd one. I find it more to my taste to wear on top of a cardigan this style of dress and the scarf brings a touch of peps. Nice post 😉

    Nice Weekend 🙂


    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Vettae-Fee!! My mom will be tickled pink to read this!!

  • Amy D. Christensen

    I love that you styled your slip dress and the cardi even thought it didn’t really match. It still creates a lovely silhouette! I love Nancy’s look, and want her shoes. But you Mom’s is the one that I thought nailed it. The colors, the cut of the dress, the scarf and tell her the booties are so chic and stylish. She looks amazing. And so does, Susan! What a great post, Jodie! – Amy

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks so much Amy!!
      I am super glad I came up with this idea for my cardigans—they hadn’t been getting as much love recently, and how sad is that?

  • mummabstylish

    Lovely Jodie, more looks I’m going to have to try out. Jacqui

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Jacqui!!

  • Love the looks!
    Dora xx

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Dora!!

  • I am loving this series you ladies are doing! You’re so creative. I love everyone’s outfit , and the bold print on your dress is gorgeous…but I gotta say, I do agree with Suzanne. I’m really loving your mom’s outfit! Her scarf and purse were the perfect touches! I’ve never thought to put my sweater under my dress before either. I going to have to give this one a try too once the weather cools down!


    • Jodie Filogomo

      This will just make my mom’s day to hear you say this, Lindsey!!

  • I think your Mom’s look is my favourite here although I gotta say I’m loving that bold rose dress you’re wearing. Rock on!


    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Suzanne!!

  • I love your outfit Jodie! I love layering longer sleeves tops under sleeveless dresses!


    Tamara – LoveofMode.com

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Tamara!!

  • Love all of these new ideas for how to wear a cardigan! I seriously wouldn’t have thought to wear one under a dress!

    pumps and push-ups

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Brooke! It fun to come up with other ways to wear the same item!!

  • You are so clever, and I can’t even begin to count how many “aha! moments” I’ve had reading your posts. I often treat my cardigans like an afterthought. I never plan an outfit around them. Instead, they’re there to complete an outfit. They never get to be the star, and with this series, you showed how to put the cardigan first. Your look is so 90s reimagined, and Charlotte’s reminds me of Mad Men. Such inspired styling choices!

    <3 Liz

    • Jodie Filogomo

      But see—I was the same way. A cardigan was a topper only. But this blogging journey has seemed to opened up the creative juices (well, somewhat)…ha ha!
      I think part of the reason I try these crazy things, is I have a theme for the week, and I try to keep within that theme. It really makes me try to consider other possibilities!
      Thanks for that wonderful comment, Liz—it makes me feel so good to have others think my ideas aren’t the weirdest ever!!

  • Only problem with the cardigan under the dress is that you can’t easily take it off should you get hot! (I know, what is the chance of that right?) I do enjoy how creative you got with these stylings, and maybe if your slip dress hasn’t gotten much love in 10 years it’s time to let it go?

    • Jodie Filogomo

      That’s very true Lydia—it’s definitely not going to be easy to take off the sweater if I get too hot. Luckily my hot flashes have gone away for awhile—otherwise, I’ll have to wear the cardigan the regular way (there’s always a pro & con, right?)
      And I was actually putting this dress in the giveaway pile when I realized it was a slip dress, and it seemed like so many bloggers were touting them! I decided to see if I should try to wear it? The verdict is still out….

  • I especially love them paired under dresses. So versatile!

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Laura!!

  • Madhubani

    My my… everybody is looking so beautiful and chic. I used to wear sweaters under my dresses when I was small.. This post reminded me of those golden days 🙂

    • Jodie Filogomo

      How fabulous that you used to do this, Madhubani! Maybe it’s one way to bring back our youth? 🙂

  • I need to try using cardigans under dresses. I love the way it turned out with these looks. Thanks for sharing this great quote!


    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks so much Kathrine!!
      Have a fabulous weekend!!

  • I love that you wore the cardi backwards AND under a dress! So inventive and chic! And I actually don’t mind the color combo since they are complimentary to one another (artist talk ha!). Happy Friday!


    • Jodie Filogomo

      See—I need you to check my color combinations more, Liz!! It’s a whole different perspective when you have an artist looking at things!! Thanks for making me feel not so crazy!!

  • I get the best styling ideas from you! Love the idea of wearing a sweater under the dress. You all look lovely, as usual :). And I loved your first quote – I definitely needed to read that today! Hope you have a great weekend!

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks so much for such positive words!!
      I know—this quote really makes me think and reconsider!!
      Happy Weekend. Lana!!

  • Chloe

    Hi, what a great post I would never have though about wearing a cardigan under a dress. I think I may have to give it a try now, Chloe #fabfridaypost

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Chloe—it is funny how we compartmentalize certain items and then never think of them in other ways!! I was the exact same way before fashion blogging! To me a cardigan was a topper only!!

  • Judy Gramith

    What a totally fun post! Can’t believe your
    pretty slip dress has waited so long to see daylight! I actually like the combination of the not perfectly matching colors in your combo! It’s funky and dramatic!
    I have to say I think it’s key to either remove the label from the back of the sweater or find a necklace or brooch that completely covers it.
    Nancy’s open shirt dress is GREAT! I recently snapped one up at a consignment shop for just this kind of look! Because of the neutral color of this dress she can pop it over all kinds of outfits and colors beneath it!
    Charlotte’s warm colors are terrific. This is a great outfit. The small size of her scarf could work to cover backward sweater labels like a necklace too.
    Karen seems to have channeled some of your mom’s ideas! Her outfit is lovely!

    • Jodie Filogomo

      I’m hitting my palm to my head, Jude!! Of course, I should take out the label….how is it that I never thought of that? But it’s brilliant!!
      I can’t wait to see your shirt dress that you thrifted, Jude!! It’s funny how I would have never thought to wear them open like this before the blogging journey! But the chambray shirt dress I bought last fall has only been worn this way—I really should wear it like a dress at least once—ha ha!!
      Have a fabulous weekend….doing anything fun?? My husband and I are going to a writers conference—he’d like to write a book one of these days, and I need all the help I can get!!

  • Jodie, I love how you talk about things you would change as you are looking at the photos , you are right, it is more fun to challenge ourselves and try new things than to never try anything new at all. Love your slip dress , stacking the necklaces with Nancy, and the sweater under the jumper for your mom.
    have a great weekend!
    jess xx

    • Jodie Filogomo

      You bring up a great point Jess!! It’s so much easier to admit that I’m not perfect (because really, who is?) I always think I should know better since I’ve taken some classes, etc…but part of the fun is doing what you don’t really know!!
      Thanks for all of the support & love, Jess!
      I hope you’re feeling better & enjoying the end of the week!!

  • Lynda E

    These all look really nice! I bet the first would be just right if you chose a black cardigan to match the background of the pattern, instead of trying to pull a color from the floral design.

    • Jodie Filogomo

      You’re absolutely right Lynda!! I will have to try that soon…because I want to actually wear this dress now that I’ve rediscovered it!!
      Thanks for the great idea!!

  • Great dressy looks! Have a lovely weekend Jodie.

    Gemma x

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Gemma!! Enjoy your weekend too!!

  • Jocelyn (@ReadingRes)

    I do like that mustard colour, so many of these work really well! Thanks for sharing with #WotW

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks Jocelyn!!

  • All are lovely!! I love the second look the best this go around. Have a great weekend, everyone!

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks so much Elle for stopping by!!
      I’ll tell Nancy that you liked her look—it’ll make her day!!

  • That dress you are wearing is fabulous! I would love to wear that dress! And your mums pursevis amazing! What a fun item!

    • Jodie Filogomo

      Thanks so much Nancy!!
      A fun purse can really add some comedy to an outfit, right? And to think I never used to think twice about my bags—-silly, me!!

  • Karen

    I LOVE the idea of Nancy’s dress worn as a duster! Another great idea! And I actually like the “clash” of colors on your dress/sweater combination. From the back, it looks like the sweater is part of the dress and the buttons are needed for getting it on! But the colors look good together. And I love your mom’s purse! What a great touch to a classic outfit! It adds some fun and shows personality. Thanks for always helping us to think in different ways about the things in our closets. This proves there is no need to go broke putting together fun outfits!

    • Jodie Filogomo

      And thank you so much Karen for being part of the fun!!
      I love hearing that I’m not the only one that likes to switch up our clothes and give them new life!!
      Anytime you want to join in again, just email me and I can let you know the schedule!!