How to layer transitional cardigans for a stylish spring look

As the days get longer and the weather warms up, it’s time to lighten up your look by shedding those heavy layers. One versatile wardrobe essential that seamlessly transitions from winter to spring is the trusty cardigan. A cardigan can be the perfect layering piece to elevate your spring outfits to new heights of style. So, here’s my take on the art of layering transitional cardigans for a chic spring look.

Susan B. wears a coral linen sweater, vintage glass bead necklace, brown leather belt, brown utility pants and gold fisherman sandals.
(My sizes: cardigan – XS, jeans – 27. Yes, I’m wearing socks with those loafers! They run a little large, suggest going down 1/2 size.)

Step 1: Start with a Solid Base

Before I get into the fun part of layering with cardigans, it’s essential to establish a solid base outfit. Opt for a wardrobe basic such as a classic white tee or a lightweight top paired with your favourite jeans or a flowy spring skirt. 

Step 2: Play with Lengths and Textures

To add depth and interest to your layered look, mix lengths and textures with finesse. Experiment with layering a long cardigan over a shorter top for a contemporary twist. For a sophisticated touch, pair a sleek silk blouse with a chunky knit cardigan for a textural contrast.

Step 3: Belt it Up

Elevate your cardigan ensemble by accentuating your waist with a stylish belt. Whether you opt for a statement belt to make a bold statement or a classic leather belt for a more understated look, cinching your cardigan adds structure and flair to your outfit.

Step 4: Embrace Colours and Prints 

Spring is the perfect time to infuse your wardrobe with fresh pops of colour and playful prints. Don’t be afraid to experiment with vibrant hues or eye-catching patterns when choosing your cardigan. A bold floral print or a bright pastel shade can instantly brighten up your look.

Step 5: Accessorize with Flair

Complete your stylish cardigan ensemble with carefully chosen accessories that enhance your look. Consider adding a statement necklace, chic scarf, or trendy sunglasses that reflect your personal style.

With these tips and tricks, you’re well on your way to mastering the art of layering transitional cardigans for a stylish spring look. To further inspire your style journey, check out some of these chic long cardigans featured on une femme, that I highly recommend!

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  1. Thanks Susan, great ideas for us over here starting to need to add a layer to our summer clothes!
    I have lots of old long merino cardigans in my autumn colours which no longer meet in the middle…so I will try my leopard print belt over them!
    Best wishes,
    Julie xx

  2. Ooh I have a question! I have a tan long belted coatigan similar to your middle pic, unworn because it’s really long for my 5 foot 2 body. How long is too long? Do you have any tips that could make it work over jeans?
    Many thanks,
    Julie xx

    1. Hi Julie, a lot of it depends on you proportions and preferred silhouettes, but I generally find that the best lengths that work for petites are: a) anywhere between high hip and “leg break” (where your legs and torso meet, b) knee length and c) ankle length (dusters, long coats). I also think it looks best if the line between your top and bottom halves is higher than the hem of your cardigan. (if you’re wearing a column of color, you can ignore this.)

      1. Thank you Susan, that’s so helpful and makes a lot of sense. I don’t think my coatigan is going to work for me because it’s halfway between knee and ankle length. That’s a great tip about a column of colour too!

  3. Your previous blog on Marc 4 was very useful …as a matter of fact my Banana Republic package arrived Friday ( very prompt) containing 2 Fern linen pullovers…that lovely coral one as well as one in black. Both have been worn and enjoyed. Thanks for the tip.

  4. I love the Boden crewneck and the the lovely colours it comes in and you look fantastic in that green. I’ve recently been typed as light spring and it’s challenging, as not colours I’m drawn as too bright for my earth tone loving soul. They do look better on me so trying to pick up a few base layers. Which of those colours would be best for light spring?

    1. Hi Karla, on my monitor the green looks good for Spring (may be to saturated for Pastel springs). For Light Springs, I’d check out the Warm Ivory. Most of the other colors will be either too cool or too saturated. For Paintbox, Golden, or Blue springs, try the Poppy Red or Meadow Green.