A gilet is a long vest or sleeveless jacket or coat. They can be dressy or casual, and come in a variety of lengths, fabrics and style sensibilities. It’s a fabulous item to wear over a Fall or Winter-weight dress, which I’ve been doing the last few weeks. I’ve layered my knee-length gilet over two sweater dresses that hit me just above the knee. The gilet is a good four inches longer than the dresses, which works well. I finished off the outfit with tall, tailored ink blue boots and a Dutch orange satchel.

Here are the exact items from my wardrobe.

The beauty of the gilet is manifold:

  • It’s a good transitional piece that keeps out the chill
  • It is fab for those who run warm
  • It is fab for mild Winters
  • It adds interest, a playful component, or polish to an outfit 
  • It adds a relaxed vibe to the dress by taking out the “bombshell factor”
  • It is forgiving on “lumpage and bumpage” if you feel exposed in a dress

The outfit formula is dead easy. Choose any colour palette across a dressier or more casual dress code. Grab a Fall frock and layer a weightier gilet over the top. Finish off the look with booties, tall boots, pumps, oxfords, loafers, hi-tops or flats, and throw in a bag to match. Hosiery is optional. Add jewellery, watch, headgear and eyewear as desired. 

Here are some combinations with an assortment of vests and dresses to get you going. Shop your closets and have fun with fashion. Happy Friday.

Ensemble: Fall Dress & Gilet