From keeping you warm and resisting water to fighting wrinkles, fleece is an amazingly versatile fabric that can do almost anything. Another less well-known feature of fleece, however, is the way it can also be a part of stylish outfits.
That's right: So if you only wear your favorite fleece for days when you're exercising or having adventures in the great outdoors, then you're missing out!
But how can you take one of your favorite active fabrics and make it feel stylish for your everyday life? These fashionable fleece guidelines will help you rethink the fuzzy wonders of fleece and find new and creative ways to wear it more creatively in your everyday outfits.
If you think fleece only shows up in awesome fleece jackets and vests, think again. There's a much wider array of clothing made with fleece for you to choose from.
Fleece can be found in fleece sweaters, turtlenecks, tunics, and even blazers, all of which can be the basis of terrific weekday outfits.
Add a few more of these choices to your fleece lineup, and you'll discover chances to wear fleece that you've never considered before. For instance, a fleece turtleneck can be a pretty fashion selection for your next book club meeting, or you could wear a fleece blazer to a parent-teacher conference.
Because we tend to associate fleece with when we need to feel comfortable and have the ability to move freely, we usually wear it in styles that are loose and flexible, along with other elements that do the same, such as relaxed hiking pants.
Sure, this does make sense for a day on the trail, but if you're looking to amp up the style factor of your daily outfits, play with the proportions of your clothing. Create a contrast by mixing your loose pieces with more closely fitting ones and your look will instantly feel more interesting and stylish.
For instance, if you're wearing a flowy fleece tunic that hangs loosely around your hips, try playing against that loose line by wearing pants that follow the line of your legs more closely (a great option would be a pair of leggings. Wearing a fleece turtleneck that's a little bit tighter? Pair it with wide-leg pants or even a relaxed skirt and you'll have a perfect mix of fashionable proportions.
One aspect of fleece that makes it stand out is its texture. Fleece will always look soft and plush, giving your clothes an inviting feel and attention-grabbing quality.
But when you want an outfit to look stylish, too much coziness can be an obstacle—picture the sleepy-time style of a velour tracksuit or your kid's favorite footie pajamas. The best way to make the most of fleece's softness without drifting into the too-relaxed territory is to pair it with fabrics that have a distinctly different feel.
Women's jeans, particularly in dark washes, make a great contrast to fleece because the sturdy look of deep blue denim seems crisp and energetic against a softer fabric. Another great option for pairing with fleece is faux leather, whether it's with leggings or even skirts because the tough edginess of that material is a zippy contrast to fleece's soft-and-comfy look.
We're talking about contrast again here: When you want to make your fleece look stylish for the city (or suburban) streets, it's important to play against the instinctive expectations we have for a performance material.
One of the most critical places to do just that is in your footwear selection. To highlight the fashion over the functionality of your outfit, pick shoes that wouldn't hold up well on a day hike—think ballet flats or fashionable boots. This contrast creates a visual reminder that you're wearing the fleece for its looks first, not its functionality.
The shoes you choose can be as subtle or as bold as you'd like, depending on how confident you'd like to be while wearing it. Tall biker boots with a fleece vest? A daring look. High heels paired with a fleece pullover? A fashionably unexpected combination. Both display a striking sense of style.
Accessories are one of the easiest, and the most fun, ways make any outfit look trendier and more stylish. Outfits featuring your favorite fleece pieces are no exception, so before you head out the door, add a few accessories to give your look some fashionable charm.
Glittery dangling earrings can look luxe against a fleece turtleneck. A pretty patterned scarf will add a delicate pop of color to an outfit featuring a fleece vest. Or you could even add your best going-out clutch to an outfit with a fleece pullover and leggings to elevate the formality of your look.
The key to making fleece feel fashionable is to treat it just like you would anything else in your closet. Experiment to find new and creative combinations that unleash its fabulous style.