Casual chic: the evergreen combination of jeans and loafers

Here’s an easy way to make a simple jeans outfit feel more chic and put-together: just swap out your sandals or sneakers for a pair of loafers. Jeans and loafers are a timeless, ageless combination, but one that can be tweaked to express your personal style. Today I’m sharing a jeans and loafers look I wore recently.

It’s been a busy few days. I’m finally catching up with doctor’s appointments and other errands, so I’ve been leaning into “no-brainer” outfits to get ready and out the door without fuss. Jeans and a sweater have been my starting point most days. A few accessories help me feel “present and accounted for.”

A casual jeans and loafers look

Susan B. wears a jeans and loafers look with a slouchy cashmere sweater

Above, the loafers add some structure and polish to a slouchy sweater and jeans outfit. They’re comfortable enough to walk the dog and run errands, and don’t feel too fussy or “try hard.” (OK, so I know not everyone is a fan of off-white loafers. But here I like how they add lightness, and echo the sweater and my hair color.)

I like the slightly oversized and slouchy fit of the sweater, and have balanced the volume with a slim boyfriend jean. The sweater is SO soft! I’m wearing size Small in the sweater, 28 in the jeans.

Jeans & loafers combos

This combo works with just about any style of jeans: slim, bootcut, flare, wide leg or cropped.

Mixing levels of refinement in an outfit is one of my favorite ways to add interest. So if the jeans are a little distressed, go with more polished (or classic) footwear. And yes, you absolutely can wear socks with your loafers. Coordinate with your outfit or clash…it’s all good.

Do you have a favorite outfit combo that always seems to work for you?

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  1. You are right a sweater, jeans and loafers are the ticket. It’s still warm where I live so I enjoy wearing Bass loafer mules and trade out the sweater for a button up shirt. A nod to fall but honoring the temperature. Also, in the past you have said you enjoy Quince. I just received a couple of their cotton cashmere sweaters and they are wonderful. Along with the sweaters I bought a burgundy clutch shoulder bag hybrid and the quality was also better than expected.

  2. That is such a great look pairing jeans with loafers. I’ve tried on many pairs over the years hoping to find some that work for me. I think it’s the long vamp that makes my feet look like I’m wearing a boat. I love this look on other people, however.

  3. Jeans (any kind) and a white v neck tee. I add jewelry and shoes to match my mood (boots, sandals, trainers, loafers) or agenda for the day.

  4. You always look put together.
    Two things for me. Flat shoes or loafers make me feel short, with long feet.
    I’m 5’1″
    And I’m trying wide leg jeans but I feel like I look wide myself without a high shoe.
    I’m not over weight.
    I dont think I’ve seen you model wide leg jeans.

      1. Help us resist the wide-leg jeans trend! Retailers are trying to make us buy new jeans in a style that is not flattering, resist! Mid to high-rise jeans with a straight leg look good on most figures, not wide legs.

        1. Hi Pearl, the good news is there are still plenty of styles available in just about every fit. Straight, slim, cropped, bootcut, high rise, mid-rise, etc. I think we’ve never had a better range of styles available. Yes, the brands and fashion industry are telling us wide legs are “in” but if you look at what women are wearing and what’s in the shops, they’re by no means predominant. (And full disclosure: I have a couple pairs of wide leg styles that I LOVE…it’s all about balancing proportions.)

  5. I love the loafers on you. I always feel a bit too preppy in loafers but I think I need to try them again.

    On a different topic – I purchased the long skinny version of the Emma Shipley scarf this last spring (or summer?). It’s lovely. However, every time I attempt to wear it, I feel like it doesn’t fit my gamine style. Maybe it’s too long? I’m struggling. How do you style it, as a gamine?
    PS I’m aSpring, too, so you are my go-to blogger/style gal!

  6. I would “never” buy light loafers, but they look great with your look today. I don’t buy light boots either. I think I’d just everything too dirty. I do have white sneakers though, but they can be washed. We’re still in the low 70s here in RI, but in a few weeks, replacing the jeans with cords would be a good look, too, I think. I need to shop my jewelry box and find some bracelets and necklaces as I think they up your look a lot. (BTW, present OR accounted for … just saying ..)

  7. Great classic look today. Love the look of loafers but haven’t been able to find a pair that do not slip up and down on my heels. I wear a 7 or 7.5 in most shoes and my heels are not considered to be narrow. Will keep looking. Any thoughts? Have the same trouble with ballet flats. Love your style!

    1. I have the same problem. I like the look of a chunky loafer, but I think if the sole is too stiff, they don’t bend with the foot so they slide off the heel. I have tried many different insoles and heel pads with various shoes, but they tend to push my foot forward in the shoe and crowd my toes. I recently bought a pair of Cole Hahn loafers at the NAS that have a chunky look but a more flexible sole. They also have excellent cushioning and are incredibly comfortable! Between those two things, my feet seem to stay in place with no sliding. I think it is mostly a matter of trial and error to find a shoe that works. I just wish there were more styles available in stores to try on. It took so many online orders, returns and just plain mistakes before I finally stumbled on the right shoe.

  8. Personally, I LOVE the ivory loafers, especially when paired with that color sweater. (And I Iove pure white ones too.) I only wish I could find a style that’s both comfortable and doesn’t slip on my narrow heels. Have you come across any stylish brands that work for narrow feet, Susan? So few brands carry narrows anymore. :/

  9. I love great fitting jeans and a cashmere sweater. I also love classic striped pullovers. In the coastal Pacific NW, I can wear this look most of the year. I add dressier slacks for going out to dinner. For jackets, I like moto styles or the boxy Chanel type tweeds. I add booties, ballerina flats or loafers. I did buy a Quince sweater blazer this season and like it. Living where I do, I am very fond of the Pendleton Native inspired sweaters and coats.

  10. Hi Susan
    Thank you for the hard work you put into this! Could you possibly review pull on jeans? I have given up wearing jeans with a zip and button. I hate that little ‘poke out’ and I really like the high waists and stretch of pull on jeans as I am short and have a tummy. I haven’t seen any reviews of these, unless I missed it.
    Thanks so much.

    1. Hi Susan
      I second the request for pull on jeans. My stomach is a little too much for traditional zip jeans. Thank you for all your blogs!