It’s official: Sweater weather is here. As we all collectively say “buh-bye” to our beloved summer wardrobes, the good news is that a fall season brings with it the opportunity to throw on a big ol’ sweater and get cozy. And we’re not just talking any sweater — we’re talking cardigans, people.
The workhorse of the sweater category, cardigans are everyone’s favorite because they’re just so versatile. With limitless designs on the market — cropped and bulky, soft as butter and buttoned up, knit and ultra long — cardigans can be worn solo or layered, making them a sure bet when you just don’t know what the day’s weather will have in store…which is fall in a nutshell.
More good news: Cardigans are a great way to look professional when working from home. Throw one over pajamas and your appearance will go from sleepy to snappy in a second. To help you navigate your sweater journey this season, we’ve rounded up 20 great cardigans, from luxe cashmere options (read: splurge time!) to more affordable alternatives that are equally adorable (and so cheap you can afford to buy a few). The hardest part is going to be deciding how many you need as we head into the winter months.
Old Navy Long-Line Open-Front Sweater for Women (starting at $28, originally starting at $39.99; oldnavy.com)
Ultra soft and lightweight to boot, this cotton/rayon cardigan has a lovely long-line silhouette that’s super versatile. Available in six colors, the sweater has two cute front pockets and venting, making it the perfect option to layer over a T-shirt and leggings.
Barefoot Dreams CozyChic Lite Circle Cardigan ($116; nordstrom.com)
Nearly 3,500 Nordstrom customers agree that this Barefoot Dreams cardigan, which has a 4.7-star rating, is worth the purchase. Raving that it’s the “coziest, softest sweater ever” and “comfy, cuddly perfection,” reviewers also note that shoppers should size down. Available in seven colors, the lightweight knit sweater has hidden welt pockets too. Looking to spend a bit less? Check out this much cheaper Amazon lookalike.
Zesica Open-Front Leopard Print Cardigan (starting at $24.64; amazon.com)
We told you all about the Amazon nightgown dress, the Amazon coat and the Amazon pajamas — now it’s time to dish on the Amazon cardigan. With more than 3,200 positive reviews and a 4.5-star rating, this super-cute, oversize cardi comes in 20 hues, though the A-beige leopard print is the one you’ve probably spotted on influencers time and again. The best part? It costs only 25 bucks.
Prologue Puff Button-Front Cardigan ($34.99; target.com)
Bursting with cool-girl style, this fuzzy cardigan features a V-cut neckline, puffy sleeves and at-hip length. The black hue is currently sold out, but that’s OK because we preferred the totally fall-approved cream and camel colors anyways.
AE Oversized Cardigan ($49.95; ae.com)
Remember that big ol’ sweater we talked about throwing on earlier? Well, this is it. Oversized to perfection, this rib-knit cardigan looks like you grabbed it out of your grandpa’s closet — it’s just a wee bit too long and just a wee bit too baggy, making it absolutely right for lounging around on chilly days this winter. We love the pine and pink hues, but don’t worry, it comes in black, gray and cream as well.
Cropped Cable-Knit Cardigan ($175; naadam.co)
Naadam, the brand known for its fairly priced cashmere sweaters, has a cardigan we’ve fallen head over heels for this season. In this bright purple color that would pair beautifully with your favorite black or gray coat (or even a slinky slip dress underneath), it’s perfectly cropped and features a lovely cable knit, plus it’s ultra cozy in a fabric that’s 90% wool and 10% cashmere.
Old Navy Pointelle-Knit V-Neck Button-Front Cardigan Sweater for Women ($40, originally $44.99; oldnavy.com)
Chock-full of sweet details — from the pointelle stitching to the blouson sleeves and the rib-knit cuffs — this cardi will look just as great layered over a tank or tee as it will worn solo or over a sexy cami. Available in dark gray and marled burgundy, this sweater is thin enough to be tucked in too.
Athleta Pranayama Wrap (starting at $71.99; athleta.com)
Crisp and clean, this beloved wrap-style cardigan from Athleta is a customer favorite — it has more than 3,000 reviews, 2,700 of which gave the sweater 5 stars. Available in nine colors, the super-soft wrap is lightweight and breathable too, making it perfect for some post-workout warmth.
A New Day Colorblock Open-Front Cozy Cardigan ($27.99; target.com)
If you’re looking for a basic medium-length cardigan to get you through the colder months, look no further than this option from Target brand A New Day. Available in nine colors and patterns and in sizes XS to 4X, the ultra-versatile sweater is totally soft and has some stretch in it too.
AE Cropped Balloon-Sleeve Button-Up Cardigan ($33.71, originally $44.95; ae.com)
It’s official: Cropped cardigans are having a moment. This one, with its slouchy silhouette and boxy frame, is perfection.
Italic Office Cashmere Cardigan ($80; italic.com)
Paper thin and light as air, this chic cashmere cardigan from members-only brand Italic is notable for two reasons — first, it’s gorgeous in real life. And second, it’s a steal at this price. The sweater would normally retail for triple the cost, but Italic’s direct-to-consumer model eliminates retailer fees and brand markups. Whether you wear it loose or cinched at the waist with a belt, you’re going to love this pick.
H&M Rhinestone-Button Cardigan ($29.99; hm.com)
We’re just going to go ahead and declare this cardi to be red carpet-ready, thanks to its glam rhinestone buttons and pretty lavender hue. Drape it over a little black dress on a chilly night and you’ll be good to go — alternatively, pair it with distressed denim for an adorable high/low look.
Banana Republic Cropped Cardigan Sweater (starting at $47, originally $79.50; bananarepublic.gap.com)
Part cardigan sweater, part adorable top, this piece comes in five cute colors and is perfect for pairing with jeans for a night out.
Athleta Spirit Wool Cashmere Wrap ($199; athleta.com)
Splurge alert: This lovely cashmere wrap from Athleta is a total dream of a sweater, perfect for throwing on after a yoga sesh, on your way out the door or as an extra layer of warmth while you binge-watch some TV this winter. Available in three neutral tones (black, gray and taupe), the incredibly soft cardigan has easy-access pockets, side slits and some upper shoulder ribbing details that add some detail to the simple silhouette.
Banana Republic Merino Long Cardigan Sweater in Responsible Wool ($50, originally $84.50; bananarepublic.gap.com)
Part of Banana Republic’s new responsible wool collection — knitwear composed of wool compliant with the global standard that protects both the sheep and the land they graze on — this easy, breezy cardigan is light enough to wear in the spring and summer but also warm enough for chilly nights. Machine-washable, the sweater comes in seven colors (we’re smitten with the gray!) and has a loose cut perfect for layering over a tank and jeans or leggings.
Old Navy Cozy Long-Line Open-Front Sweater for Women ($35, originally $39.99; oldnavy.com)
Similar in design to the above cardigan from Old Navy, this version is made of an acrylic/nylon yarn that is definitely heavier and warmer (and cozier too!). Available in a brown and gray and an adorable striped pattern (teal is available in limited sizes), this sweater is a staple your closet needs.
Madewell Bobble Cardigan Sweater ($98; nordstrom.com)
If you’re looking for a statement cardigan, this is it. Ultra cozy, the “bobble” sweater from Madewell features adorable pompoms on the balloon sleeves and a shawl-collar design that makes it perfect for layering over a button-down shirt on Zoom calls. More to know: Ample sizes are available, from XXS to 3X.
Maeve Makaya Cardigan ($148; anthropologie.com)
Fun personified, this cardigan is busy and loud, and that’s exactly why we love it. Featuring multiple animal prints — yes, that’s zebra and leopard — as well as pops of bright pink, this sweater is also super cozy and perfect for layering over jeans or sweatpants.
Nenona V-Neck Button-Down Knit Cardigan (starting at $19.99; amazon.com)
Another Amazon favorite is this thin cardigan that has racked up more than 4,000 positive reviews. Featuring a dozen dainty buttons, the cotton/polyester blend has ribbed detailing and comes in 26 colors and patterns.
H&M Long Cardigan ($19.99; hm.com)
Don’t let this cardigan’s price fool you; it’s much more expensive-looking (and -feeling) in person, thanks to its crisp, clean design. Available in five colors, the classic cardigan is a wardrobe staple that can be dressed up or down.