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Tips for Wearing Men's Sweater Vests

Crystal Schwanke
Sweater vest

The men's sweater vest is the perfect layering pick when it's cool outside, but not quite time for a full sweater or coat. It's a classic look, so you never have to worry about not being able to wear this year's purchases next year.

What the Sweater Vest Says

Men's sweater vests can be sexier than you might initially think. Like certain pairs of glasses, the sweater vest gives off an air of sophistication in many circumstances, and it gives the impression of an intelligent, traditional guy. In most cases, the sweater vest is considered "preppy." You also get to demonstrate your sense of style by donning a sweater vest rather than letting the T shirt or button-up stand alone. Adding something a little extra can make a huge difference in how put-together you look.

The details of the vest itself will allow you to express yourself, too. Choosing argyle or a solid neutral color will say that you like fashion, but you may not want to brave the bright colors or newest trends. Choosing a neutral color with stripes and a pop of color along the neck like the Striped Sweater Vest and Long Sleeve Shirt combination from Neiman Marcus will suggest that you appreciate trends and the unexpected a bit more than the next guy might.

How to Wear Men's Sweater Vests

While wearing a sweater vest with a T shirt is completely acceptable for casual days, one of the sexiest ways to wear a men's sweater vest is with a fitted button-up in coordinating colors. Pair a solid colored vest with a patterned button-up or vice-versa for a classic look. Roll up the sleeves a bit on the forearms to make the ensemble appear more casual. This can suggest that you're either up for anything or you're hard at work, depending on where you are and what the atmosphere is like. To dress up the vest, choose a solid colored tie that works with the vest and the shirt underneath, then tuck the ends of the tie into the vest so that only the knot and up to a few inches of the tie show. The sweater vest can be dressed up or down.

Sweater vests look equally good with nice blue jeans or trousers, with the shirt tucked in or left out (as long as the shirttail isn't especially long). Skip the athletic shoes and pair loafers, boots, or even casual sneakers like Converse with your ensemble if you're going for a laid back vibe.

When worn under a lightweight jacket, a sweater vest can give the illusion of a full pullover sweater without having to suffer through the additional heat or bulk that would come with layering a jacket over a sweater and a button-up shirt. If you love the layered look, this is one of the most comfortable ways to pull it off during the cooler days and nights of the year.

Where to Buy One or Two

You can buy sweater vests for men almost anywhere men's clothing is sold, from Walmart for around $14.00 to Neiman Marcus for over $400.00. Sweater vests can be as basic or luxurious as you'd like since they're available in materials from plain cotton knit to cashmere or wool. Check out:

No matter where you shop, you probably won't have to stray off-course in order to find a selection of sweater vests. That means that you won't have to step outside of your budget to acquire one. Be sure to check out the selection of button-up shirts that might coordinate rather than sticking to a plain white shirt. Sometimes the color scheme is what makes you stand out in the crowd.

Tips for Wearing Men's Sweater Vests