2018 Sweater Guide

By: Meghan Gates, Salt Lick Sisters

Ah, sweater weather. The term brings warmth and cozy feelings to my remembrance. Snow falling in the mountains always had me reaching for one of my dad’s old wool sweaters to layer in before I hopped on the tractor. When living in the city, I would make sure to throw a cardigan into my purse before dashing out the door to catch the train. For all of my chilly weather needs, sweaters have always there to wrap me up in a warm sense of bliss, as a necessary layer, as a statement, as a comfort piece.

Sweaters are the graphic tees of the wintertime; you can never have too many of them, and if you style them correctly, you can wear one every day of the week. However, sweaters can sometimes be intimidating and many people have a preconceived notion about them. What do you think about when the term “sweater” crosses your mind? For many of us, it’s our grandmother crocheting an itchy, monogramed nightmare that we will feel obligated to keep and wear for every Christmas…forever. But I’m here to encourage you to shed those fears and look at sweaters in a new light! From cropped to oversized, statement sleeves to traditional knits, and everything in between, sweaters will never go out of style. There is always a knitted garment for every body type and every desired style.

Speaking of body types, another beautiful quality of sweaters (and all garments) is that there aren’t any rules! “Oh you can’t wear that sweater because you’re too heavy, “ said no one ever. There are fitted sweaters for the curvy girls, oversized for the less-bodacious, and everything in between.

The key to taking things from frumpy to flattering is how you style it. How can some girls pull off even the ugliest of Christmas sweaters and still look cute? Balance, knowing your body, and styling is how. If you are a lover of all things fitted, pair your sweater with some high-rise, wide-leg trousers that elongate your legs and emphasize your natural waist, without adding more “tightness”. If you prefer your knits loose and roomy, balance it with a short skirt and knee-high boots or your favorite pair of skinnies and a killer pair of pumps.

Sweaters aren’t meant to be a confusing puzzle of cashmere and unwritten rules, and they will never be outdated! Investing in classic pieces now will save you money and headaches in the future. So dive to the back of your closet and give that old cowl neck a new life! Check out my list of secrets below if you’re still on the fence about the idea of a stylist sweater.

Here are some tips and tricks to styling sweaters:

  • Don’t be afraid to play with the boys. Some of my favorite sweaters come from the men’s department. Adding a little masculinity to any wardrobe provides versatility and sense of creativeness.
  • Turtlenecks are your friends! The whole point of a sweater is to keep you warm, so you might as well stay toasty aound your neck too. They are also a great way to show off your statement earrings.
  • Experiment and think outside the box. Pairing a sweater with skinnies and booties is a great classic, but don’t stay away from some non-classic styling techniques, like skirts, blazers, and puffy vests!
  • Sweaters aren’t only for grannies. One of my favorite looks is to combine my mother’s old traditional sweater with my edgy leather jacket. Pull some current trends with your sweater to make a great overall and put-together outfit.
  • Cuffing your sleeves is a game changer. It may sound like the simplest and smallest change, but it will take a plain sweater from boring to interesting in the subtlest of ways.
  • Mix your textures. A hugely overlooked and immensely simple style secret is to mix and match your textiles. A wool sweater goes great with just about anything: suede, denim, leather, corduroy, and more!

Meghan Gates is the manager and owner of Salt Lick Sisters. She is a professional blogger, using her talents in the writing, modeling and styling capacities. Meghan’s passion for all things western and vintage stems from her ranching background and childhood. Her mission is to inspire the western industry with authenticity, grace, and kindness, and to move them towards their calling. When not working, Meghan can be found riding through cattle with her husband, listening to George Jones on vinyl, experimenting in the kitchen, snuggling with her dogs, or nose-deep in her Bible.