The best sweater dresses are one of those few items that combine a scrumptious, cozy feeling with a put-together look so beautifully. Like the airy fabrics and shoulder-baring cuts of summer, there’s an inherent effortlessness to knit dresses that are highly covetable in the fall and winter months. But beyond the ease of wear, sweater dresses pack a lot of versatility, whether styled for relaxed moments with comfortable sneakers or dialed up with heels and jewelry for work, an event, or date night.
The vast range of silhouettes and designs on offer play into the sweater dress’s universal appeal, from the classics like cashmere designs, chunky cable knits, and basic black to of-the-moment styles like modern mixed-media silhouettes, long and lean maxis, and collared polos. No matter your taste, there’s a tone and pattern for you. Discover the nine best sweater dresses to fill your cold-weather wardrobe with stylish options for every taste.
Long & Lean
A maxi is the ultimate sweater dress for shielding yourself from the cold, and of late, long and lean styles have stood out on designer runways from Khaite to Chloé and Saint Laurent. Style yours with lug-sole boots for a utilitarian offset. Or go the elegant route with heeled boots and sculptural jewelry.
Brandom Maxwell, Staud, Christopher Esber, and more have delivered an incredibly fresh-for-fall take on the sweater dress via mixed-media styles for pre-layered ease. From ’90s-era cashmere and liquid silk combinations to the timeless shirtdress and cable-knit combo, these unique styles are dimensional and unique that span casual, professional, and dressy aesthetics.
For an evolution to ’90s and Aughts, cut-outs and asymmetric necklines, from Proenza Schouler’s wrap midi rendered in wool to Jacquemus ribbed mini that sits off the shoulder for a subtle flaunt of skin.
Chunky Cable Knit
Thinner knits are perfect when transitioning seasons and in early fall, but once a brisk chill hits, go for a chunky cable knit for a classic sweater dress look. Whether an oversized mini, figure-skimming cardigan, or bustier-inspired midi suits your taste, this iconic knit design looks great with everything from chunky loafers and Mary Janes to tall riding boots and heeled ankle styles.
Decidedly high-impact yet enduring is the combination of black and white. Bold iterations of this contrasting color combination are notable this season, whether you’re for a tailored look like Tory Burch’s ‘70s-inspired pleated polo design, Joseph’s tie-dye turtleneck, or Lisa Yang’s ombre-effect cashmere midi.
If there’s one sweater dress you’ll never regret investing in, it’s one of the cashmere variety. Simple and luxurious, styling possibilities are endless in any silhouette, be it a V-neck mini, crewneck midi, or loose, ankle-skimming style. And even better, these sumptuous styles come with the feel of a warm and cozy hug.
On the chilliest days, a turtleneck sweater dress will keep you stylishly warm, be it crafted of heavyweight wool with ribbed detailing, a fluttery stretch-knit midi silhouette, or a delicate and feminine pointelle design with scallop-edged ruffles.
Ribbed sweater dresses are among the most comfortable and versatile—in other words, a wardrobe essential. From Simon Miller’s signature wide-rib takes to Toteme’s minimalist wool maxi and Jil Sadner’s ribbed cardigan design, these also lend themselves to transitional dressing and varied styling for all occasions, like with sneakers for casual errands to polished moments with a blazer and heels.
Though it takes inspiration from the ’70s, the ribbed polo dress is one of the season’s must-try sweater dresses. Variations range from ultra-fitted to loose and fit-and-flared—take your pick and finish with a sleek pair of boots.