Adding a cardigan is one way of layering up Summer dresses, but there are more interesting options if you have the right pieces. Here’s how to create the look:

  • Pop a shirt, blouse or better-end knitted T-shirt under a plain-ish dress (sheath, A-line, sack or empire). I’ve used a black sack dress to illustrate below, but you could experiment with a subtle pattern. Jersey dresses will also work if they stand away from the body from the waist down. Dresses that cling will show through the extra layer which is not ideal.
  • Add the right jacket. This is a little trickier then you might expect. An ultra cropped jacket (like a bolero) or knee–length trench will work over most dress styles and won’t look frumpy. Anything else you’ll need to test buttoned and unbuttoned and judge whether it works.
  • Cinch in your waist with a wide belt for an extra bit of shape and sass.
  • Finish it off with leggings and you’ll have an updated look for Autumn.

These versatile layering options are the perfect way of adding a new dimension to your office look if you’re stuck in a pants rut. They can be interpreted in a modern-classic or trendy manner depending on your fashion persona.

Calvin Klein Satin Sequin Trim Shift Dress Alfani Silk Animal-Print Ruffle-Front BlousePoet Blouse
INC International Concepts® Pleated Surplice TopWalter Leopard Chiffon Blouse

A black of-the-moment sack dress and various layering options – blouses, a shirt and a knitted top.