Modern Cardigan Outfits {Winter 2024}

For years, one of the most popular posts on my blog was how to wear cardigans without looking frumpy. It was last updated in October of 2020, and it’s interesting to see how styles have changed since then.

Treasure & Bond cardigan (S) // Gap Factory tank (M) // Paige Anessa (29) – on sale // Marc Fisher boots (8) –  on sale // Frame belt (M) // Jenny Bird earrings & necklace // Gucci crossbody (similar for less)

Usually I would just update that post and republish it, but I actually really like the advice I gave there and the variety of photos I had to illustrate each point, so I’m starting over with a new post from a slightly different angle.

Cardigans have taken a back seat to other sweater styles over the past few seasons, and I haven’t worn them much. Truth be told, I’ve always preferred the ease of a pullover to a cardigan and all of the factors involved with layering and styling them.

But now that cardigans are trending again, I’m enjoying how they add some variety to my winter outfits. That said, cardigan styles and what looks current to me has changed a bit, so let’s discuss!

What Types of Cardigans Are In Style for 2024?

Rather than the waterfall cardigans and long, slim, open cardigans of the 2010s*, we are seeing more of the v-neck styles with buttons and blazer-inspired looks.

Most are short (even cropped) or mid-length, and some are slouchy while others are more flowy.

Also, stripes are a big trend in cardigans right now, as are fair isle prints. And belted cardigans are making a comeback.

Rails Geneva Cardigan (S) – on sale (more sizes at Saks & Nordstrom) // Tom Ford sunnies // Baublebar necklace // Madewell earrings

* This is not to say that you won’t see any waterfall or long duster cardigans in the stores, but they aren’t the most current look. As always, you should wear what you like. I am just sharing what looks fresh and modern to my eye.

Personally, I’m feeling drawn to the button-up v-neck styles, like the Rails Geneva stripe cardigan I’m wearing above.

I also like this clean oversize cardigan from Treasure & Bond, as it has more of that borrowed-from-the-boys vibe. They are often worn buttoned-up, but they can also be worn unbuttoned, as I styled mine here.

I was actually inspired to create this outfit by the model on the website, in the charcoal grey cardigan.

I’ll admit, I didn’t think of wearing this cardigan unbuttoned until I saw this picture, and I certainly didn’t think about pairing it with wide leg jeans.

photo credit: Nordstrom

Which brings me to my next point, how to style cardigans for winter 2023-24.

How to Style Cardigans for Winter 2024

Just as cardigan styles have evolved over the past few seasons, denim silhouettes have also changed a lot since October 2020.

Treasure & Bond cardigan (S) // Paige Anessa (29) – on sale // Marc Fisher boots (8) –  on sale // Jenny Bird earrings & necklace // Gucci crossbody (similar for less)

I love how these wide leg ankle jeans with pointed toe ankle boots update this classic cardigan. These are the Paige Anessa, and the denim is super soft and comfortable.

They have a 27″ inseam with a 22 1/2″ leg opening, and a high 11 1/2″ front rise, and they happen to be on sale right now!

Also note, I followed my tips #2 and #5 from How To Wear Cardigans Without Looking Frumpy. My under layer is both form-fitting, and it shows some skin at the neckline, which is slimming, especially when wearing a more relaxed cardigan on top.

When worn buttoned-up, the denim silhouette really depends on the length of the cardigan.

Shorter cardigans, like the Rails Geneva, can work with a variety of denim silhouettes, but I like them with these AG Mari slim straight ankle jeans. These jeans are also on sale this weekend, by the way.

They’re more of a classic style, rather than the trendy wide-leg ankle jeans shown above, but this cardigan has a more modern style to it, with the stripes and the wide sleeves, so the combination looks current without being too try-hard.

Rails Geneva Cardigan (S) – on sale (more sizes at Saks & Nordstrom) // AG Mari (29) – on sale (more sizes at Nordstrom) // Marc Fisher Fabina (8) – on sale // Tom Ford sunnies // Baublebar necklace // Madewell bucket bag

Here are a few more cardigan outfits I’ve styled recently that I feel look current for winter 2023-2024.

Some of these were quick try-ons, so they aren’t all accessorized the way I would prefer, but I like the combination of sweater styles and denim silhouettes and footwear.

This is fun for a casual holiday party or dinner out, with the embellished button cardigan and inky black trouser jeans.

Halogen embellished button cardigan (S) // PAIGE Leenah trouser jeans (29) // Marc Fisher Ulani boots (8) – on sale

This is a more casual vibe, with the Treasure & Bond clean oversize cardigan from above, this time worn buttoned-up with over a black tank with washed black slim straight ankle jeans and classic loafers.

cardigan (S) // black tank (M) // similar jeans // similar loafers // silver hoops

I love the unique herringbone pattern in this Splendid cardigan, although it seems to be selling out. I wore this with light wash blue jeans and sneakers, to dress it down, but it’s also cute with black jeans and loafers, as I wore the one above.

Splendid cardigan (S) – on sale at Saks & Nordstrom // MOTHER Dazzler (29) // P448 sneakers (39) // silver hoops

This stripe cardigan is super soft and has such a pretty color palette, and I like how it looks both buttoned and unbuttoned with the wider leg jeans.

While this may not be as classically flattering as some of the other combinations, it has an effortlessly-chic, slouchy look that I like.

I’d like to try this with black boots, though. Along with my dark hair, they would create a bookend to the look, as well as coordinate with the black in the stripes and tank.

Splendid Kendall (S) – on sale at Splendid // similar jeans // Dolce Vita booties (8.5) // black tank // Jenny Bird earrings & necklace

And here are those same jeans with black lug sole boots and a fun fair isle cardigan in shades of black, grey and white.

Fair isle is having a moment this season, and fair isle cardigans are a nice alternative to the solid colors that ruled the day for so long. Plus, they help keep the outfit looking current, as long as they’re styled with modern-looking footwear and denim silhouettes.

Style Tip: With a style as classic as a fair isle print, keep the other elements of the outfit modern to keep it from looking dated.

Design History cardigan (S) – on sale at Saks // white tank (M) // similar PAIGE denim (29) // Steve Madden Chelsea Boots (8)

And finally, this super luxe ribbed v-neck cashmere cardigan is a classic with a twist. I love the contrasting buttons and side slit detail, and the knit is such a nice quality.

I love the combination of the oatmeal knit and light wash denim, and I wore a white tank underneath to keep the color palette light and low contrast.

Nordstrom Signature cardigan (S) // white tank (M) // MOTHER Dazzler (29) // P448 sneakers (39) // Jenny Bird earrings // similar pendant

The sporty sneakers give it a fun, playful appeal, but I’ve also worn this same outfit with taupe loafer mules (similar here) for a slightly more elevated look and feel.

I hope this post gives you some modern styling ideas for your cardigans this season! And if you’re looking to add a few more current cardigan options to your closet, I rounded up some of my favorites below.

Shop My Favorite Cardigans

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10 Responses

  1. Love the slouchy look of the burgandy cardigan with the wide leg jeans. Fun different look. I like the color it shows on you rather than website. Which is accurate? The website looks more of a darker drab burgandy. Great post.

  2. Thank you for this post! I think you have mind reading abilities because I have been thinking about how to wear my cardigans in an up-to-date way. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

  3. Love cardigans and your first outfit is super cute! And you know I’m going to ask as one of your tall girl readers, can you suggest a wide leg jean like the Anessa but with a 28-29” inseam?

  4. Thanks for the ideas. I like the shorter cardigans with wide leg jeans. I prefer the longer ones with the straight leg. Can a the first sweater be worn with a bootleg or flare? The model in the gray sweater with crop wide legs is so tall she can carry that look. I would look like a bag lady. I got rid of all my waterfall cardigans a couple of years ago. I prefer my sweater blazers from JCrew.

  5. Love this post! I’m a lifelong fan of cardigans and I love seeing them styled in fresh new ways every year. Your post is outstanding!

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