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HOW TO STYLE VESTS – 11 Different Ways To Wear The Vest Trend This Season

Although there are an abundance of new and re-emerging trends to get excited about thanks to the new-season Fall 2022 runways (stay tuned for my next blog where I'll be going into more detail about the new-season fashion trends) I'm delighted to say that vests have been on my radar for quite a few seasons now, and I'm pleased to see that they are still one of the biggest trends of the moment! Especially during this time of year…

Are Vests On Trend In 2022?

Ever since the likes of Prada, Gucci and Dior debuted a covetable selection of vests in their AW20 collections (and Versace and Etro were among the brands who further reiterated that they are here to stay for their Fall 2021 lines) they have soared in popularity, no doubt because of their versatility and just how simple they make transitioning between different seasons. Akin to boyfriend cardigans, they no longer have the reputation they once did (although nothing is wrong with a little bit of geek chic in my opinion) and they are actually one of the most contemporary and en-vogue pieces that can be added to an outfit.

How To Wear A Sweater Vest

Are sweater vests preppy? They sure can be, which only adds to their appeal. But whether you go down the preppy route or go for something a little bolder or edgier, there are lots of different styles to choose from, and the looks you can create with them are virtually endless. They tie so many looks together and often provide the missing piece of the sartorial puzzle either by way of a different color or texture or maybe even pattern, and I can’t imagine ever living without a vast selection in my closet at any given time. I'm sure that you can already tell that this is the beginning of a beautiful sartorial love affair!

How To Style A Vest

Vests are undoubtedly one of the hardest working pieces in my wardrobe, and I hope by the time you've finished reading this blog you will understand why! Take a look at some of my favorite vests that I have accumulated over the years – including some brand new ones that are still available to snap up – and the fun and different ways I have styled them!

Crochet Vest

I'm starting off with one of my favorite looks, as I am beyond excited to share it with you! Last month, I shared a picture of this outfit on my @Lily_Tracy Instagram account, and so many of you seemed to be just as infatuated with it as I was – mainly because of the stunning crochet vest. I mentioned that I instantly fell in love with this crochet vest as soon as I laid eyes on it, because I had never seen anything quite so intricate and beautiful in my life. Over one month later and I am still just as obsessed with it, and I am always thinking of new ways to incorporate it into my looks because it's so versatile.

On this occasion., I've kept things light and feminine (which I felt was definitely a much-needed change for the time of the year) and wore it with a baby blue ribbed lounge dress, white Alexandre Birman boots, an Hermès hair scarf to further feminize the look, and my Bottega Veneta cassette bag, the color of which expertly complements and brings out the colors in the vest.

What Is Crochet?

It's been a while since I explored the history of fashion, and I was very interested in learning where the term crochet (which is responsible for one of my favorite pieces in my wardrobe) came from, and I was fascinated to discover more about its origins. What does the word crochet mean? The word crochet actually comes from the French word 'crochet' which literally means 'small hook' and essentially describes the crocheting technique. Crochet is the process of making clothing (or other things like blankets, for example) by interlocking – or hooping, if you will – loops of materials. The hooks themselves can be made from many different materials such as wood, metal, or even bamboo, so there are lots of options for the avid knitters out there!

Where Did Crochet Come From?

A quick Google search tells me that crocheting dates back to the 1500s if you can believe it; but it didn’t originate in France as the current name suggests. According to sources, it actually originated in Italy under the name of 'nun's work' or 'nun's lace,' where nuns reportedly used it for church textiles. You learn something new every day!  

Denim Floral Vest

Mom jeans and a simple T-shirt – and more recently, a long tunic – is one of my go-to casual yet comfortable looks right now, but I often feel that it needs something a little extra for a little bit of wow factor. In this instance, the addition of the denim floral vest instantly elevates the look with no extra effort on my part, as the floral vest does all the hard work for me! 

I've teamed the hero piece of the look, i.e., the denim floral vest, with my ripped mom jeans, a stripe tunic, and added Chanel espadrilles and my Bottega Veneta Jodie bag for just a subtle hint of luxury.

Military Inspired Vest

I've always been very interested in military-inspired fashion, especially since it has always been such a prominent trend in one way or another. From olive green hues to the neutral and earthy tones which everyone knows I am so drawn to, and sharp lines and attention to detail by way of intricate buttons and zippers, and exaggerated shoulders, there are actually so many ways to interpret the military trend. And it's about so much more than camouflage cargo pants; although I'd be lying if I said I didn’t have a pair of those in my closet!

I really liked this military inspired vest when I saw it, and I knew that there were lots of different ways I could style it. True to my signature style, I thought it would work best when juxtaposed with more casual pieces, which is what I have done here. It would make perfect sense to stick to the same neutral color palette, but I actually went in a different direction this time round and chose some equally attention-grabbing red and white pinstripe flares to make the whole look stand out even more. Yet I think it's still quite casual and versatile thanks to the black layering top, Hermès sneakers, black Chanel flap bag to match with the layering top, and optional baseball cap.

Argyle Sweater Vest

It's no secret that I love preppy fashion, and I regularly add cute preppy pieces to my outfits when the occasion doesn’t allow for an all-out preppy look. This argyle sweater vest is one of my favorite vests, because it's such a hardworking piece that not only adds color and texture to an outfit, but also ties the whole look together rather seamlessly too! What’s not to love?!

I wore this exact outfit to brunch with my family, and the casual yet stylishly comfortable look couldn’t have been more perfect for the occasion! I paired the argyle vest with an Anine Bing graphic tee underneath (one of my go-to casual pieces!) barrel jeans (which are an equally comfortable alternative to mom jeans) Golden Goose sneakers, Chloe sunglasses, and my Bottega Veneta cassette bag for some expert color clashing. For an even preppier look, I wouldn't hesitate to team it with a white blouse and a mini skirt and beret, or some of my fancier pieces that I have been trying to get more wear out of since they didn’t get the outings they deserved over the holidays. And if I wanted to elevate a semi-preppy look, I would perhaps swap out the graphic tee for a shirt and a darker pair of jeans and switch up the footwear. So many styling options!

 

Fringe And Lace Vest

I love playing around with different fabrics, so imagine my delight when I saw this vest that had both fringe, sequin and lace elements! There are so many different ways I could wear this fun vest. I've gone for a feminine yet casual vibe here, but I would also use it to elevate a jeans and tee ensemble, and also to complement something a little fancier for an evening occasion. The multiple fabrics plus the versatile and goes-with-everything color means that it literally will go with everything, so prepare to see it pop up in many more pictures in the future!

I've teamed my fringe and lace vest with a maxi slip dress for some femininity, a flannel button down to add some edge but also to keep out the chill, which I will definitely forgo when the weather gets a little warmer as I think the slip dress and the vest would also work so seamlessly together. I've added my staple black Chanel boots to the look, as well as my Chanel flap bag.

Oversized Knit Retro Vest

Time for something a little bit different now. Different, but by no means less exciting. In fact, if I'm being honest, this is one of my favorite pieces in my current vest collection, perhaps because it’s a little think-outside-the-box! My fall/winter style is all about layering, and that's exactly what this oversized knit vest is perfect for! And can we take a moment to obsess over the gorgeous pastel purple color? This oversized vest can be worn over hundreds of pieces, from long-sleeved dresses to plain layering tops (of which I have many!) to tops with fancy prints and patterns too. As the spring is fast approaching, I wanted to forgo the traditional fall/winter colors and go for something much lighter, and a floral layering top seemed like the perfect accompaniment!

I've teamed my oversized knit retro vest with a floral thermal which not only keeps me warm but proves that spring is just around the corner. I've added some wide leg jeans which I feel complement the oversized and comfortable, non-restrictive aesthetic of the rest of the look, as well as my Golden Goose sneakers and Bottega Veneta Jodie bag. Do you love this vest and overall look as much as I do?

 

Longline Vest

Somewhere between a vest and a waistcoat, this longline vest was born; and I've never been happier to see it!

Why Are Longline Vests Flattering?

Longline vests (and longline pieces such as tank tops, sweaters, the list goes on) are easily the most flattering, as the longer fabric gives the illusion of a longer silhouette. Longline vests are very figure-flattering (particularly for apple and pear shapes) thanks to the beautiful long vertical lines they create, thus giving the illusion of a taller and slimmer silhouette. I swear by my longer pieces for this very reason, so I was beside myself with excitement when I saw this. It was an immediate add to cart, and I've never looked back!

And now onto the second reason I fell in love with this piece. The collar and intricate gold buttons make this vest seem like a cut above the rest, as it's on the more formal side of the vest spectrum. I'm also obsessed with the check pattern, which I think only adds to the sophistication of it, and I think it's perfect to add to more understated and even casual pieces to make an overall more polished look.

In the spirit of going for something different, I went for some edgy accompaniments on this occasion, and teamed the vest with a snakeskin print midi skirt (which I think is so fabulous, especially for this time of year; and you can expect to see me style it with more summery pieces over the next few months!) As the weather is still a little chilly, my Chloe Franne boots came to the rescue, and I finished the look off with my YSL Niki bag.

 

Quilted Floral Vest

I wanted to step back in time and go for a real 70s fashion vibe with this outfit, and the 70s colors, prints, and accessories all worked well with each other to make my vision come true! I don’t know why the seventies got such a bad rap for fashion; it’s the decade that brought us flares, so I won’t hear any negativity about it!

There are no hero pieces in this outfit, as I feel each piece deserves to be the star of the show. Since this is a post about vests, it goes without saying that the quilted floral vest is something super special. I love how it is both quilted (perfect for warmth) as well as floral, and the color combinations just put a huge smile on my face. To make the vest the hero piece of my next look, I could team it with something plainer in a more subtle or contrasting color, but on this occasion, I wanted to stick to the same color palette, and knew my stripe sweater dress was the perfect piece for it! I finished off the look with my Chloe Faye bag, and my Swedish hasbeen clogs. No other footwear choice would have been acceptable for this seventies-inspired look!

 

Shearling Vest

Shearling pieces are great for providing some much-needed warmth (perfect for this time of year!) and are especially handy for layering during unpredictable weather times, or when you want to wear slightly more adventurous pieces but still want to keep out the chill. Again, just what this current season and time of year calls for!

I am obsessed with this shearling vest, and I can dress it up or down with ease as it's so versatile and goes with practically everything! On this occasion, I've dressed the vest up by teaming it with a white ruffle sleeve button-down, which I think instantly elevates any outfit, an animal print midi skirt (there's never a bad time for animal print, am I right?) my Alexandre Birman boots, and my Chanel 19 bag.

 

Men's Style Houndstooth Vest

Sometimes women have all the fun in fashion, but not always. In fact, I often get a little envious of some of the menswear pieces that come out on the catwalks during Men's Fashion Week and even find myself wanting to purchase the pieces that come from the menswear fashion shows. And on more than one occasion, I have! This men's style houndstooth vest is one of those pieces! Although it is technically aimed at women, I can definitely see where the menswear fashion inspiration comes from, and I'm all for it! I just hope my husband steers clear of it because I'm currently too in love with it to share!

I've teamed my men's style houndstooth vest with some sand-colored barrel jeans and accessorized with some Chanel boots and my Valentino floral flap bag which gives the outfit just a splash of femininity, while ensuring the look sticks to a predominantly muted and understated nude color palette. My favorite! I also had a few extra moments to spare in the morning (it's not often a mom of five gets to say that!) so I curled my hair in my usual way (check it out on my @Lily_Tracy Instagram).

 

White Leather Ruffle Vest

I wanted to finish off with another one of my favorite pieces in my current vest rotation, and that is my white leather ruffle vest that I have been obsessed with ever since I purchased it! I haven't seen many leather or ruffle vests, I must admit, so this purchase definitely seemed like a no brainer. I love the juxtaposition of the tough leather with the feminine ruffle, and of course the light and understated white color. Perhaps I wouldn’t have been as shocked to see this if it came in a more conventional black leather color, but I can't be sure. In fact, if I do see it come in other colors, I will more than likely snap that up too!

There are so many ways to wear this leather ruffle vest, but on this occasion, I wanted to make the most of the feminine vibes, which is why I teamed it with a floral thermal layering top (perfect for this time of year) and my wide leg corduroys. Accessories wise, I went for my Valentino beige candy stud bag and toned the look down (or perhaps just disguised my unwashed or unbrushed mom hair – no one will know!) with my much-loved Burberry cap.

I hope you've enjoyed reading my post about all the different ways to style vests. They really are one of the hardest-working pieces in my wardrobe right now, and I hope I have given you a little inspiration to either expand your collection or simply given you new ways to style your existing ones.

Love,

Lily x x