Layering Tricks That Will Help You Outsmart the Weather This Year

If the thought of layering clothes gives you flashbacks to being told to dress for school with the requisite reminder, "Don't forget your coat," we promise you that piling it on has never been better. We've long associated experimental layering with the Olsen twins during the mid-noughties—hiding from the paparazzi in mountains of bohemian fabrics and hefty coatigans. And a decade later, playful layering is still on the style agenda, especially when navigating weatherproof dressing in winter.

To help, we've compiled key layering tricks that will help you get more wear out of your existing favourites over the next few months and help you decide what you need to invest in. If there's one major tip we can give you? You'll find that one of the most versatile, long-wearing purchases is a black roll-neck, along with a classic leather belt and over-the-knee boots. Below you'll see classic layering techniques that minimalists always lean on, and then more out-there combinations—such as clashing prints and doubling up on coats—for those who like to experiment more with their looks.

See below for outfit formulas to make you excited about adding those extra layers.

1. Try the Preppy Shoulder Knot

Style Notes: Looping a colourful jumper around your shoulders is an old preppy styling trick you'll spot at any golf club, but it's also Alexa Chung's favourite way to layer up knitwear.

2. Use Leather to Add Extra Warmth

Style Notes: Use leather separates to add extra warmth, weather that's a shirt, trousers or blazer.

3. Pile on the Accessories Too

Style Notes: Don't only layer up your outwear but also pile on the chain necklaces too. It makes the outfit look more considered rather than like you're pulling a Joey Tribbiani and wearing all your clothes at once.

4. Layer Up Knitwear

Style Notes: One of our favourite layering tricks is to pile on as much knitwear as you can physically fit on your body. We love how Brittany Bathgate wears a knitted skirt, jumper and another jumper knotted around her shoulders.

5. Tuck Skinny Jeans Into Knee-High Boots

Style Notes: One way to add an extra layer of warmth is to tuck your trousers or jeans into your leather knee-high boots. 

6. A Black Roll-Neck Will Work Under Almost Anything

Style Notes: A fine black roll-neck is a layering staple that you can wear under everything from dresses to shirts to cardigans. 

7. Wear a Knitted Vest

Style Notes: One way to add layers to your look without feeling bulky is to wear a knitted vest over your shirts and T-shirts.

8. Wear a Jacket Under Your Coat

Style Notes: Ada Oguntodu shows how you can double up on coats and outerwear: by layering a blazer under a trench coat. 

9. Layer A Cardigan Under A Blazer

Style Notes: Layering a wool cardigan between your favourite top and blazer is a foolproof way to keep cosy. 

10. A Blanket Scarf Will Be Your Best Friend

Style Notes: While you can't acceptably leave the house wearing a giant duvet around your shoulders, an oversized wrap scarf is the next best option. 

11. Two Jumpers Are Better Than One

Style Notes: When all else fails, try layering a thin jumper underneath a bulker one. When it comes to winter warmth, two jumpers are definitely better than one. 

12. Invest In A Puffer

Style Notes: When it comes to warmth, a puffer coat is an essential. Whether you opt for a playful printed style, or keep it neutral. 

13. Elevate Your Favourite Hoodie With A Structured Coat

Style Notes: While your favourite hoodie might be reserved for trips to the gym or days spent on the couch, pairing it with a structured coat and jeans will elevate the look and keep you warm. 

Related Stories