Winter to Spring Layering: The Long and Short of It

faux fur vest winter outfit layers boston fashion blog

Kensie sweater xs, Topshop jeans sz 25 x 30 (size up), old hat (similar),
Blank NYC jacket xs, Abercrombie vest xs, Goyard bag, Sam Edelman boots (very similar)

I often mention outfit “formulas” on here, since having a few go-to ones will make getting dressed quicker and easier! I’m editing a new YouTube video on layering, and one of my favorite formulas discussed there is a cropped jacket over a longer top, plus one additional topper piece if it’s very cold out. For this outfit I started out with a longer tunic sweater as the base. I added warmth and texture by layering on a cropped moto jacket, plus a faux fur vest for going outdoors. The rule of thumb here is simply just to mix up the lengths – since the vest is longer, you can also tuck in the sweater to make it appear shorter in juxtaposition.

goyard st louis gray tote petite fashion blog

Speaking of this vest, I’ve been happy to hear so much great feedback from you guys about it! It’s an unexpectedly luxe find from typically preppy Abercrombie, which I don’t shop at very often. I couldn’t bring myself to when their crass CEO was in office, but now that he’s been ousted for a while and the topless models have been replaced with more sensibly-clothed (and diverse) ones, I’ve been giving their items another look. There’s definitely some interesting pieces like this navy lace dress or this cute, simple shirt dress which both come in petites.

how to style layer a black faux fur vest outfit

I borrowed this high-low hem sweater from a friend, and saw that it’s still available and very reasonably priced right now! One thing to note is the mock neck opening doesn’t have a lot of stretch, so if you have a larger head like myself, you’ll have to be careful not to mess up your hair getting it on/off over your head. I definitely wouldn’t go so far as one reviewer to say it was painful to take off (unless you have a very wide head) – just a little snug. The fit is plenty wide around your neck, so no choking feeling like with some turtlenecks. An XS is a good fit on petites overall, and the knit material has a chenille-like feel to it.

spring fall gray layers casual outfit ideas

boston south end fashion blogger spring outfits


48 thoughts on “Winter to Spring Layering: The Long and Short of It

  • Reply Kelsey Quackenbush February 20, 2017 at 9:37 pm

    I love the black fur vest it is so cute!!
    Xo, Kelsey |

  • Reply MizEats February 20, 2017 at 9:49 pm

    These are beautiful pics! I like your tip about layering different length pieces to create not only warmth but interest. I also like how the different textures add to the monochromatic outfit. Side note, I LOVE my Sam Edelman boots …Thanks again for recommending them!

  • Reply Jessica | Petite Style Script Blog February 20, 2017 at 10:37 pm

    Hi Jean, I love this layering look and how you stayed in the gray/black neutral color scheme! I also like a shorter jacket over a longer time; my current favorite is a tweed jacket that elevates any top!

  • Reply Charmaine Ng | Architecture and Lifestyle Blog February 20, 2017 at 10:57 pm

    I love the black fur vest! It looks so good with the whole outfit.

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

  • Reply Jessica H February 20, 2017 at 11:18 pm

    Both of these looks are so cute! At first I thought you had on the same thing underneath the vest and jacket and then double looked and realized – nope totally different! You created such unique looks but totally giving the same vibes in each one – I'm so impressed and in love with BOTH!!!

    xo, jess

  • Reply La Bijoux Bella | by mia February 20, 2017 at 11:18 pm

    Such a cute look … love the hat! 🙂

    ❤LA BIJOUX BELLA❤ | BY MIA | A Creative Lifestyle Blog

  • Reply Christie February 20, 2017 at 11:21 pm

    I love that you didn't support Abercrombie for that reason!

  • Reply Anonymous February 20, 2017 at 11:55 pm

    Hey Jean,

    Quick question, does your black BlankNYC jacket ever stain the shirt you wear under? Mine stains my white t-shirts in the underarm area so I was wondering if it ever happens to anyone else. Thanks!

  • Reply Helen Veyna February 21, 2017 at 12:21 am

    I love this outfit, especially that vest. I felt the same way about Abercrombie, and was totally not down with their awful former CEO and lack of diversity in their ads, but am glad they've been making some amazing changes to their advertising and designs.

    Sweet Helen Grace

  • Reply Janinafran February 21, 2017 at 12:51 am

    I love this fur vest!! Its one of my faves 🙂
    XO Janina

  • Reply Julia February 21, 2017 at 1:45 am

    I haven't walked into Abercrombie in a while either, but I'm sure I would be surprised by their latest style…just like when I last walked into American Eagle and came out with a bunch of spring summer essentials, including my all-time favorite denim shirt!

    Julia || Closet de Jules || Recent Post – The Perfect Spring Loafer (40% off at Nordstrom!)

  • Reply Miriam Elizabeth February 21, 2017 at 3:35 am

    You look gorgeous, great post! X


  • Reply Sophie Spiegelberger February 21, 2017 at 5:34 am

    Love that faux fur vest!

  • Reply Georgiana February 21, 2017 at 6:50 am

    I love the biker jacket! It is nice how you styled it with the fur vest to keep yourself warm 🙂

    Check out my cheerful spring outfit with selfmade cape (link) or read my article about "beauty" pills (link)

  • Reply Rachael Cargin February 21, 2017 at 9:12 am

    Love this look 🙂

    Rachael xx.

  • Reply Ewa Macherowska February 21, 2017 at 9:23 am
  • Reply pork & cookies February 21, 2017 at 9:58 am

    Super cute outfit!! I'm a sucker for lots of black and grey that look classy.

    -Kirsten // pork & cookies

  • Reply Emily February 21, 2017 at 10:39 am

    You're my layering guru. I can't wait to see the video. =)

  • Reply August Harvest February 21, 2017 at 11:57 am

    Love the colours! Nice combination, and I've got the same bag haha <3

    'Share' by August Harvest

  • Reply Jenn February 21, 2017 at 12:24 pm

    As always, you nailed the outfit. I love all the different layers and textures and it's perfect, since it's getting warmer in Boston this week 🙂

    jennnngo | twitter | latest post

  • Reply Daneisha Smith February 21, 2017 at 2:02 pm

    Cute sweater and jeans! Just plain cute all around! I love your style!

  • Reply Tega February 21, 2017 at 4:40 pm

    Love the look! I look forward to the video. 🙂

  • Reply Angie February 21, 2017 at 5:59 pm

    Love the outfit minus the vest. I don't think it suits your classic chic style.

  • Reply THE NEON FACTOR | Diana February 21, 2017 at 6:23 pm

    Love this!! You look great.

    || D I A N A ||

  • Reply Margaret Hong February 21, 2017 at 10:08 pm

    I am more on the opposite. I love to pair long coat or duster over short top hahh

    xx Margaret

  • Reply STBE in Boston February 21, 2017 at 11:17 pm

    Hi Jean! I love your style! I'm wondering if you are carrying the Saint Louis PM or GM? Is it sturdy enough to carry my laptop (13 inch MacBook Air) and paperwork back and forth? I'm trying to carry less in general, but usually have my laptop with me. Thank you in advance! Cindy

  • Reply Cathy February 22, 2017 at 12:56 am

    Jean, you look amazing as always! I do. Love that fur vest over the top.

    And just to update you, I received my first Trunk Club box today and I was so so pleased! My stylist Monica did an incredible job with the fit and though not everything was perfect, I was so impressed! I found a leather jacket that I'm keeping because it's literally to die for (and slightly over a budget I'd normally allot for something like that, but it's going to be a staple piece for sure!). Anyway, I wanted to thank you because I never would have known about it without you (like so many other great fashion and style gems!).

  • Reply Aria Di Bari February 22, 2017 at 8:56 am

    I love the layering of fur and leather!

  • Reply Julie Hiller February 22, 2017 at 10:51 am

    I like the idea of go-to "formulas" like this one. That's a great jacket, btw!

    Style by Joules

  • Reply Kaitlin Schubert February 22, 2017 at 11:04 am

    I'd say this formula is pretty perfect! Gorgeous.

    Katie | Willow and White

  • Reply Josephine Ellen February 22, 2017 at 12:17 pm

    I love how you added the vest over the jacket (I have the same one!)! So cute!!

  • Reply b. February 22, 2017 at 2:31 pm

    Great vest! You are adorable!

  • Reply Sara McFarland February 22, 2017 at 4:12 pm

    Jean. Love this outfit. Would be great for your packing method using staple items that can be repeated. Would love you to do another post for packing 10 days worth of outfits but for colder winter/early spring days! My hubby and I are taking a trip to Europe in early April and could use your help 🙂

  • Reply Sarah Lilly February 22, 2017 at 6:41 pm

    I love both of these outfits and I love how you have styled the layering to not only be warm, but stylish too! That vest looks so good layered over that jacket and jersey!

    Sarah Lilly | The Lilly Mint Blog

  • Reply Barbara M February 22, 2017 at 9:46 pm

    Love you, Jean, and this is nothing against you because you are just following the fashion of the day. But I will be glad when the torn/distressed jeans fad is over. I think that most will look back at this fad and say, "What were we thinking!"

  • Reply Julia Mazzucato February 23, 2017 at 12:18 am

    I love the moto jacket! You styled these looks wonderfully!
    Julia・Little Miss Haute Couture

  • Reply Ramirez February 23, 2017 at 9:17 pm

    is that the goyard st louis tote?

  • Reply Minau February 24, 2017 at 2:25 pm

    Great look with my faves colors!

  • Reply Emily March 1, 2017 at 6:26 am

    I second this!

  • Reply Alex March 3, 2017 at 2:15 pm

    Hi Jean! I bought these boots after reading this post and am wondering if you do anything specific to keep them clean? would love any tips before I put a lot of wear into them. Thank you!!!

  • Reply Jean March 3, 2017 at 2:48 pm

    Yay, I'm SO happy to hear that! Might be one of my favorite boot styles ever : )

  • Reply Jean March 3, 2017 at 2:49 pm

    Oh wow … I haven't worn mine very often with white underneath but in general I haven't noticed it staying any of my lighter tops. I'm sorry to hear that!

  • Reply Jean March 3, 2017 at 2:50 pm

    Sorry for the late reply! It's the PM size (the GM is very large, fyi!). I use mine to shlep a lot of stuff, including laptop, and it hasn't shown signs of wear yet. But note it's a very thin and lightweight bag. I'd suggest checking it out in-person at the Barneys in Copley mall!

  • Reply Jean March 3, 2017 at 2:51 pm

    Hi Cathy,
    Thank you so much for your sweet comment. I'm so happy to hear you had a good experience! Would you mind sharing the brand / style of the jacket with us? I would love to check it out too!

  • Reply Jean March 3, 2017 at 2:54 pm

    Hi Sara – thank you for the wonderful suggestion! Unfortunately I don't think I'll be going on any longer trips in this current weather, but I would definitely bring a vest for layering and then a trench-style jacket for wearing over everything, from casual denim outfits to dressier dinner looks. A neutral scarf would also be on my list for unexpected chillier days. And instead of lighter tops and tees, I love a good classic striped sweater, which elevates even basic outfits a la the Parisians. Hope you have an amazing time on your trip!

  • Reply Jean March 3, 2017 at 2:55 pm

    Barbara – I don't doubt that you may be right, but I have to admit I'm rather fond of the fad these past years : )

  • Reply Jean March 3, 2017 at 2:55 pm

    Yes it is

  • Reply Jean March 3, 2017 at 2:56 pm

    Hi Alex! I didn't do anything to these but I've used the Cadillac brand suede & leather spray (if you search on my blog I've shown it a few times and in a video too) for several other shoes and handbags. I was too eager to wear these, and you have to spray your products before wearing otherwise it might seal in dirt.

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