Not to state the obvious, but the runways don't always showcase clothing that truly works for real life. For example, for fall and winter, many designers showed things like peep-toe boots paired with bodysuits (sans pants, of course), wispy lace blouses, and scads of sheer skirts and dresses. We love all of these trends--okay, two out of three--but they're not exactly go-to options on a freezing day, to say the least. But while there are a handful of out-there ensembles and impractical materials in the current collections, we also noted one major trend that's both fashionable and realistic: chunky knits!
While high-fashion options like Marc Jacobs' Hand-Knit Fisherman's Sweater ($1400), Rag & Bone's Kemble Scarf ($195), or D&G's Cable-Knit Wool-Blend Sweater Dress ($445) are certainly worthy of consideration, we think this is one trend that doesn't require a splurge. Save those hard-earned dollars for the fast-approaching holiday season because we've gathered a covetable collection of chunky knits for your shopping pleasure--all under $100. Yup, these yummy options will keep you snug as a bug all winter and they're super stylish too, so be sure to pick up a piece or two today. Once you've narrowed it down, don't forget to take a styling tip from Kate Bosworth and layer your chunky knit with equally interesting pieces. The actress, who was snapped running errands in Los Angeles early last month, recently combined an oversized brown Topshop cardigan, black t-shirt, army green shorts, and suede Isabel Marant ankle boots. It's a smart transitional ensemble and it's cost-effective; in other words, a win-win situation!
Topshop Knitted Short Cable Jumper ($80)
When we first spotted this darling pullover, we instantly thought of fashion favorite Sienna Miller. We're positive she'd appreciate its dusty rose color and cropped hemline. And if you're in the market for something that's a little more fitted, we think this is an oh-so sweet cable-knit worth trying. It's thick without being bulky, and guaranteed to keep you toasty, so just give it a polished finish with high-waisted trousers and a pair of pumps.
Zara Oversize Jersey ($80)
For our minimalist dressers out there, we promise you'll love this gray crewneck pullover from Zara. The basic cut makes it a perfect throw-on-and-go sweater that can be worn day or night. It's super versatile, so you can juxtapose its relaxed fit with black skinny jeans or try pairing it with a floor-grazing maxi skirt for a fashion-forward ensemble inspired by the runways--it works both ways!
Nastygal Unbalanced Crop Knit ($68)>br>
It's easy to get stuck in a routine of standard sweaters and cardigans, but if you're looking to mix things up a bit, we suggest checking out Nastygal's amazing cropped iteration. Don't be fooled by this sweet beige knit, it definitely has an edgy side with not one, but two asymmetric cuts at the hemline and neckline. For the ultimate downtown ensemble, pair this cool-girl sweater with a pair of slim trousers and lace-up boots.
byCorpus Popcorn Sweater ($68)
The masterminds behind the brand Corpus created an exclusive line for Urban Outfitters and the collection boasts many obsession-worthy items to keep an eye on--like this awesome thick-knit cardigan. When the chilly weather calls for an additional layer, you'll want to answer it with this black and white sweater. The long cut and relaxed shawl collar make it an excellent alternative to a lightweight winter coat.
Madewell Shadowbox Mohair Sweater ($75) in Pine Shadow
There's nothing that pleases us more than a piece that can take us from the office to the weekend without skipping a beat, which explains our adoration for this fuzzy v-neck sweater. Whether you choose to wear it to brunch with your favorite worn-in t-shirt or layered over a crisp button-up for your next meeting, you'll definitely appreciate its roomy fit. We're partial to this gorgeous green hue, but if you love this comfortable option as mush as we do, you might want to snag all five amazing colors.
Forever 21 Long Multi-Knit Cardigan ($25)
What's not to love about Forever 21's take on the chunky knit? The soft taupe color of this unfussy cardigan will surely give your ensembles a chic finish, so you'll definitely want to have this one on hand at the office.
BDG Knit Cardigan ($68)
A classic knit cardigan is a timeless wardrobe staple in our opinion, which is why our selection would not be complete without BDG's chunky iteration. The sweater's worn-in gray color and brown button details make it feel as if it was taken straight from our grandfather's closet. Plus, it's so comfortable and versatile, we want to wear it all day/everyday, especially over silky blouses or vintage dresses.
H&M Short-Sleeve Knit Sweater ($25)
Who says all knits have to be long-sleeved? Not your Who What Wear editors or the design team at H&M! The latter designed a pumpkin short-sleeve sweater that might be the ideal transitional piece. It's not too heavy, so you can throw on additional layers, like a cool cardi or a boyfriend coat if you need extra warmth. And we can definitely appreciate its thrifty price tag!--Jessica Baker
Photo of Kate Bosworth, courtesy of X17