You should not wear a sweater vest with a short-sleeved button-down shirt, but you can definitely wear them with t-shirts. This look is actually in trend right now due to the rise of “softboy” outfits and aesthetic fashion.
Vests are the perfect mid-layer for a variety of different outfits, but despite this fact, most people are still scared to rock them.
I think the reason for this fear is that people are just not aware of how they should be styling a vest, and are afraid that they are just going to screw things up or make some fashion faux pas.
But it isn’t really that complicated. For example, many people are confused about whether they should wear a vest when wearing a short sleeves shirt or not. And can you even wear a sweater vest with a t-shirt? Is a tie necessary in such a case?
These are the different questions that I will be answering in this article, so make sure that you read till the end.
Can you Wear a Vest With a Short-Sleeves Shirt?
A sweater vest is just going to look weird with a short-sleeved shirt. If you really want to wear a vest, you can wear a waistcoat or a puffer vest instead.
Before we go any further, it is important to break down the word “vest”. While there are endless examples of vests, I use this word only for three products – a puffer vest, a sweater vest, and a waistcoat.
A waistcoat can actually work really well with a fitted short-sleeved button-down shirt. This is perfect for something like a summer brunch, and can actually make you stand out from a crowd.
Similarly, if you prefer a more casual version, you can replace it with a puffer vest. They look great with shirts, especially if you nail the fit of the garments.
But the one thing that I would recommend you to stay away from would be a sweater vest. They just look very “off” with a half sleeves shirt. It’s like mixing two things that shouldn’t be mixed, like noodles and chocolate.
And even from the lens of practicality, the outfit is a letdown. While one piece symbolizes summer, the other is known for its cold weather usage. There is really no sense in pairing a vest with a short sleeves shirt.
Can you Wear a Vest Over a T-shirt?
A sweater vest looks great over a white t-shirt. However, you should never wear a waistcoat with a t-shirt because that is considered a style mistake.
Again, let’s cover the three different types of vests one by one.
The combination of a sweater vest and a white t-shirt is everywhere right now. Major fashion influencers are rocking it on Instagram. Due to the rise of Korean fashion overall, this look has cemented its place in the world of men’s style.
So don’t hesitate in pairing these two entities. This is a very aesthetic outfit and will look especially good on young people.
Puffer vests (some people call them gilets) are also pretty compatible with t-shirts in the style department. An earth-tone gilet layered over a neutral t-shirt is a sure-fire way to get compliments from your fashion-literate friends.
But the one combination that you need to throw in the dustbin is the “T-shirt and waistcoat”, because it just makes you look like a failed magician. These pieces reek out of 00’s fashion trends, and when a trend has been dead for over 2 decades, you stay away from it.
Is it Necessary to Wear a Tie when Wearing a Vest?
No, it is not necessary to wear a tie when you wear a vest, especially in casual situations. But you should always wear a tie with a suit vest.
While sweater vests and puffer vests can look pretty good on their own, a waistcoat usually needs the help of accessories like a tie and a watch to really make it shine.
The reason for this is the formal nature of waistcoats and suit vests.
While you can wear a sweater vest with literally anything, that is, it does not have any strong connotations, the suit vest has always been correlated with weddings and expensive parties.
Therefore, it is much more jarring to see a waistcoat without a tie than a sweater vest without a tie.
In this article, I answered your questions about wearing a vest with short-sleeved clothing. We saw that while the look may work for certain kinds of vests, you still need to pay some attention before constructing your outfit.
My name is Alex Higson and I am the founder of Magic Of Clothes. I have worked in the fashion industry for many years, and clothes and style are a huge part of my life.