Lessons in Layering

Mr. Rogers

It’s possible that I watched too much of Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood in the early seventies when I was young and impressionable, because I LOVE CARDIGANS! Any and all cardigan sweaters are welcome in my closet. Short sleeved, long sleeved, bulky knit, cotton, lace, etc. Unlike the other large, clothing collections I’ve mentioned before, not only do I have a lot of these versatile sweaters, I have an almost hoarder-like amount. So the other day when a fabulous friend of mine asked me to write about layering – it was no problem at all.

She said, “I need some help layering my clothes.”

And I thought, “I need professional help because I can’t stop layering my clothes.”

Lucky for me (and her), great style has spoken and layers are lovely.  I could go on forever on this topic, but I know you’re busy. Let’s discuss two of my favorites . . .

Scarves. Not just for winter anymore.  A scarf made of a lightweight material like cotton, linen or lace can dress-up a short sleeved shirt or tank. This type of layering can add pizazz to a plain tee or a little dimension to a boring tank.  Don’t be afraid to mix patterns. Do be afraid to add a heavy-knit scarf to anything short or sleeveless. Get crazy and add a patterned “summer scarf” to a solid maxi or sundress on a late summer evening – and with fall arriving, the possibilities are endless! Ah. I love scarves.

Cardigans! It’s absolutely alright to put a cardigan over anything. A few things to keep in mind . . . never put a tight cardi over a blousy shirt (duh) and never let it get all bunchy in the sleeves. Keep it sleek underneath.  If you love a tighter shirt BUT don’t love your butt? Grab a long cardigan to top off the look.  You are now beautifully layered and polished and hiding your buns. Don’t be afraid to buy cardigans in every color, cut and length. The basics almost never go out of style and you can easily switch it up with the seasons by swapping tanks for long sleeves and ADDING A SCARF (see above).  Do be afraid to wear a cardi that doesn’t fit quite right. Too big and it’s Grandpa City, too small and it’s Cougar City.  Find a good fit. Get crazy by wearing a short skirt with a long jacket (cardigan). Remember Cake singing about that girl? They were right. It’s a hot and edgy look.  Now, I didn’t say “mini skirt” I said short. If you must mini with your long jacket, cover your gams with tights. Gracias.

Another great way to find a layering look that works for you is to take in the scenery. Steal a glance at the woman next to you in line at grocery store and then steal her look (or at least the idea of it).  Grab an US Weekly and see what the celebrities-in-the-raw are wearing while pumping their gas in Van Nuys. They are the BEST examples. They’re always layered to the max and usually look pretty great.

The art of layering is more than just that. It extends our wardrobes, hides our flaws makes the ordinary trendy, and gives us a multitude of options when we just need a little change. To my fabulous friend asking for some assistance with layering- I hope this was helpful. And I’m going to go out on a limb and give props to that wonderful man who taught us so much about kindness and layering -and who like me, had a never ending closet full of sweaters  . . .

Won’t you please, won’t you please . . .Please won’t you try and layer?


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