The Ultimate Guide to Knitwear

From shawls to twinsets, we breakdown knitwear and how to wear it

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One of Merino wool’s great benefits is its ability to maintain body heat. This, along with its incredible softness and resilience, makes it such a wonderful fibre for winter knitwear.

Here, a definitive list of women’s knitwear for women to keep you warm – and looking stylish – throughout the winter months.


Also known as turtlenecks for their roll of extra material at the neck, this style is perfect for extra warmth and protection against the cold by protecting the neck. Either fitted for more formal looks or worn loosely for a luxurious casual feel, roll necks work great as an additional layer under jackets.


A knitted jacket, cardigans come in smaller, more fitted varieties (often part of a twinset) and the looser, chunkier variety worn oversized and long. Thrown over jeans and shirt, heavier styles of cardigans such as cable or a traditional Aran knit offer easy and comfortable warmth ideal for relaxing in over the weekend. Smaller, more fitted varieties, teamed with tailored pants or a skirt, are great for more formal situations or as an alternative to a blazer.


V-neck sweaters are cut with a low collar, in the shape of a ‘V’. Traditionally, no more than three buttons should be visible but looser styles can often come with a more exaggerated neckline. While there is a rule that V-neck sweaters should always be worn with a collared shirt, this really only applies in professional situations. Looser, oversized styles offer a more relaxed feel that pairs wonderfully with denim.


A somewhat traditional garment made popular again, twin-sets are basically a matching cardigan and sweater or shirt made in the same colour and fabric. The tight-fitting undergarment can be either long- or short-sleeved, and the cardigan is more often than not left undone to reveal a piece of statement jewellery. A touch too formal for the weekend, twin-sets can add a sweet, vintage look to your nine-to-five wardrobe.


Knitted vests are a wonderful way to add extra warmth without the weight of a traditional sweater. Commonly worn over a business shirt, vests can provide both additional protection against the cold and add a touch of colour to corporate attire.


While not essentially knitwear in the traditional sense, but not quite a scarf either, shawls are an indulgent way of keeping warm. Shawls are also an elegant way to keep warm at formal events, such as dinners or parties, when the outfit of the night doesn’t quite work with a more standard outer layer.


Photography Liz Ham | Illustration Barry Allen Patenaude

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