Sweater Dress

AKA: poor boy shift, cardigan dress

How to say it:  swet-er dres

Traditional Features: 

Sweater Dress

  • styled like a long sweater
  • knitted
  • may or may not have waistline
  • comes in various styles

21st Century Sweater Dresses

The sweater dress continues to be a regular fall/winter favourite in the 21st century. Thick and chunky or thin and slim-line, the sweater dress is a chic way to stay warm in the colder months and perfect with a nude leg, skinny jean or a pair of tights.

Dsquared2 Lilly Pulitzer

DSQUARED2, Lilly Pulitzer

Maison Scotch McQ Alexander McQueen

Maison Scotch, McQ Alexander McQueen


…of the style: While people have been knitting wool into garments for centuries, it wasn’t until the 1930s that the sweater dress was introduced into women’s fashion. Essentially a longer version of a regular sweater (or jumper depending on where you live) the sweater dress remained popular throughout the 1940s, got even more popular in the 50s, had become a fashion staple by the 60s, and has remained as such to the present day.

In the 21st century, the sweater dress continues to be a perennial favourite, gracing catwalks and high-street stores every fall and winter. Modern sweater dresses tend to be short, but full length ones do come along here and there, and the prevailing styles change with the seasons; yet the basic premise of the style never seems to changes.

…of the name: It is a dress version of a sweater, hence the name.

I couldn’t find a lot of information regarding the history of the Sweater Dress, but what I could find was here eHow, wiseGeek and the Fairchild’s Dictionary of Fashion

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