The Art Of Shawl Neck Cardigans
Really; how much knitwear does a guy need? I’m assuming by now you’ve got the basics covered – a handful of neutral solid wool/cashmere jumpers and cardigans, with maybe a stripe or a Fair Isle thrown in for good measure. These pieces are perfect for just about any occasion and, if you’ve invested in quality, should see you through plenty of winters to come.Whether you’ve picked up a chunky version or a more lightweight office-appropriate kind, the addition of a shawl collar to your knitwear collection can liven up even the most tried and tested of looks. During these colder months, the ability to flip that collar up to protect yourself against the wind can be a welcome addition as well. Secondly, it’s just so damn versatile! Thirdly, there’s something inherently rugged and manly about them, especially when it comes to the heavy woolen varieties.
How To Wear?
1. Trade The Jacket
This is the simplest thing that most guys forget to do, just swap your suit jacket for the cardigan. Due to its fit, it looks just as good over a shirt, tie and suit trouser combination as it would with your jeans and t-shirt.Maybe even put a twist on another AW12 essential, the three-piece suit, by doing the same?
2. Middle Layer
I find the problem with most trench/macs that you can buy these days is that they are made from one single sheet of cotton/thin wool. Sure they keep the rain off but they sure don’t keep the chill out! Solution? Layer your cardigan in-between to provide an extra layer of warmth and an element of texture to your look.
If you happen to be a fan of the seriously chunky cardigans out there (I’m talking an inch thick, doing a bicep curl to pick up style) then why not just think of it as the perfect autumn coat?
For those brisk morning commutes that still don’t warrant breaking out the winter wear, simply layer the cardigan over the top of your suit and be on your way. Then, when it warms up later, take the cardigan off or stuff it in your bag rather than having an awkward stiff wool coat to carry around. Maybe even invest in a belted version to add that ‘is it a trench, is it a knit?’ conundrum.
4. Knits On Knits On Knits
We all know the easiest and most boring way to wear a chunky cardigan is to pair it with jeans/chinos and a t-shirt. But seriously, if that’s all you’re ever going to amount to with it then what’s the point? You might as well just apply to be in TOWIE. Mix things up by layering it with other, more lightweight knits instead. Why not try it with a pair of casual tweed trousers or cords and a linen/cotton blend crew neck jumper? The great thing about linen blended knitwear is that it keeps you warm and comfortable without becoming hot or stifling.