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Guide To Custom Sweaters

Sweaters have long been a staple of any self-respecting gentleman’s wardrobe. They are practical in colder months and effortlessly sharp in the proper context. In this post, we are breaking down how to dress up a sweater, how to dress it down, and some general tips on wearing custom sweaters.

Explore the different styling details for sweaters in our custom knits post. 

Dressing A Sweater Up

man models custom cardigan sweaterThough sweaters are inherently casual they can be perfect in a professional setting when paired strategically with other garments. Treat the sweater as you would any other sport coat. Pair it with dress trousers instead of jeans, a button-down shirt, and a tie. Keep in mind the color and patterns of each of the pieces so that the image you present looks intentional.

Explore more about color and pattern coordination in our previous blog posts.

Another way to add formality to an outfit is to add a sport coat on top of a sweater. This is best for colder months where the extra layers have a practical application in keeping you warm during long commutes to the office. 

Dressier sweaters tend to be high-gauge cashmere or merino wool, which has a finer finish and a smoother look than a chunky sweater. The following styles tend to look best for formal outfits:

  • V-necks
  • Cardigans
  • Sweater vests

Dressing A Sweater Down

custom grey turtleneck on modelJust as adding patterns and textures to a suit cloth will make it more casual, the same happens when using a lower gauge knit on a sweater. The added thickness and texture lend a decidedly casual look that is perfect for date nights or cocktail parties. The following styles tend to be the best-looking as casual sweaters:

  • Chunky cardigans
  • Turtle necks
  • Cable knit crew necks

What do you pair with these styles of sweaters? Our custom jeans are a great starting point, of course. Corduroys and twill pants are other options. Casual shirts, such as polos and soft plaids, look very sharp under the right sweater.

A Word On Necklines

white crew neck with v neck sweaterMen don’t often pay attention to their necklines – it tends to be a womenswear concept when talking about dresses. Still, it’s important for men, specifically as it relates to sweaters. You don’t want your undershirt neckline competing with that of your sweater.

We’ll keep things easy – with the exception of a clean crew neck t-shirt under a v-neck sweater, it’s always best to opt for a v-neck undershirt. The reason for this is that this neckline runs the least risk of competing with the neckline of your sweater. Even in the case of something like a cardigan, which would expose the neck of any t-shirt, the v-neck is still superior. Angular lines add an element of sharpness, muscularity, and strength (associated with masculinity), while curved lines (like a crew neck) create a softer and more comforting look, which is often associated more with femininity.


We hope this helps you in terms of how to wear custom sweaters. Are you ready to take your casual wardrobe to the next level? We’re here for you, virtually or in person. Call us at 215-310-0219 or email info@henrydavidsen.com to start a conversation. The time is now!

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