According to Kris: Don’t Sweat the Vest

By Kris James

Once upon a time, a humble sweater vest was a big example of poor styling. For years it has been downgraded and ended up being considered the “it-thing” that belonged to the golf courses of retirement communities, the campuses of elite private middle schools, and nowhere else. Of course, fashion does what it does best, from the same fashion gods that made fanny packs cool and socks and sandals HOT. The Sweater vests have been recast as a snappy, unexpected style move. This is going to be the year of the sweater-vest.

Growing up I loved my sweater vest fits my mom would get for me. Even for a chubby kid, I felt very stylish and preppy. Last year while moving I came across a picture that my mom and I took in 99 or 2000. I was wearing a cream vest trimmed in red, with a red tee and khaki shorts. Looking back at my ensemble, It was no surprise that I would find myself now wanting to recreate the look I wore from my childhood. That was the moment I told my self that I need to get me a sweater vest. How could I have predicted that the sweater vest trend would be cool?

Fast forward a few months, Harry Styles is pulling the look off by wearing them over blousy dress shirts and big wide trousers. Tyler, the Creator makes his versions that look fresh with crisp white tees and Dickies. In Hulu’s television series reboot of High Fidelity, starring Zoë Kravitz, she can be seen pairing hers with a white tee, vintage shorts, tube socks, and loafers. Honestly, a look that will work for the summer months. On another hand, Bella Hadid and Victoria Beckham styled it in very different ways, showing how versatile a sweater-vest can be. Not a single dork or geek in the bunch.

Beyond every social-economic difference, it’s one of the coolest and comfortable items to add to your closet. Furthermore, it can be worn by anyone and in every situation, making it even genderless. There are so many options, Stripes! Solid colors! Prints! And, yes, sheep! They’re also perfect to layer with over a classic button-down or wear on their own when the weather warms up. Basically, you know how the trench coat is a transitional staple for spring? Well, the sweater vest might just beat it this year because it’s just as versatile and chic.

Now, it’s time for you to join the sleeveless ranks and pull off a sweater vest. Here are some ways to get you inspired.

STYLE TIP: Google Seth Cohen from The OC for inspiration