Flannel is a surprisingly versatile pattern—it can just as easily be spotted in a college library as it is on the runway, and it's popular among the business casual set and the coffee-shop dweller alike. While the pattern is generally known in its traditional form as the classic button-down flannel shirt, there are countless ways to spice up this essential design by elevating it beyond its casual shirt roots.
Whether it’s changing up the way you wear your flannel shirt or switching up the pattern but keeping the fabric, here are some trending flannel styles you’ll want to experiment with soon.
A tunic is effortlessly elegant with its drapey shape and intriguing slit collar. While we’re used to seeing tunics in refined fabrics like silk, a flannel tunic brings the perfect blend of casual style to this high-class look while dressing up your average flannel pattern. A flannel tunic brings out the gorgeous, intricate patterns that flannel offers, showcasing them at their best—you'll love tucking your tunic into a pair of high-waisted pants with a pair of statement earrings and a leather belt. A pair of leather boots finish off the look perfectly. You can also leave it untucked for a more casual flannel tunic look or belting it at the waist for a bohemian twist.
The idea of separating flannel from its print can seem sacrilege at first. However, this is the perfect way to reinvent the flannel ensemble, taking everything there is to love about the cut and feel of flannel but divorcing it from its woodsy vibe. An elegant, solid flannel shirt is a stunning addition to any wardrobe, keeping the softness of the original material but suggesting a more formal, subdued look overall. It’s easier to accessorize with a solid flannel by leaving out the busyness of the classic flannel print and allowing us to have fun elsewhere—with a bold necklace or hairstyle, or colorful pair of pants or skirt. An even wilder idea can be to switch up the plaid pattern for a different one—have you ever considered a floral flannel? Or maybe even a tie-dye flannel? Why does flannel have to be restricted to plaid? The options are truly endless.
There's much to love about how dresses solve the puzzle of getting dressed so perfectly—they’re a whole outfit in one. Dresses are always eye-catching, whether they’re flowing or form-fitting, but one way to really make a splash is with a flannel dress. It’s an unexpected look since flannel is so often only worn from the waist up. But turning it into a total head-to-toe look is genius—what better way to stay warm, comfortable, and chic all at once? Pair a flannel dress with solid tights—stay away from patterns here unless you’re trying to get really funky—and a pair of tall heeled boots. It’s also great with loafers for a fun throwback to the 90s or a pair of sneakers for maximum comfort.
When you love flannel but want to take it one step further, try a flannel shirt jacket or light coat. Flannel deserves to be seen in all its glory, so when the colder months hit, keep it on the outside by turning it into outerwear. For a trendy look, wear a super-thick flannel that doubles as a jacket in the fall. Pair it with a turtleneck and corduroy pants for a super fun, and cozy look for walks in the park as the leaves turn brown. A fleece-lined flannel shirt jacket is also perfect for fall, bringing the vibrant plaid pattern of a flannel shirt to your outerwear look and keeping you extra warm. A flannel-lined hoodie is a fun way to show off a splash of the pattern when it’s cold out as well. Of course, you can always layer these under a warmer coat—but don’t forget to top it off with a flannel women's scarf to complete the look!
Flannel is as fashionable as it is functional, so it’s no wonder we’re so eager to wear it no matter what the season or occasion. These fun style suggestions help bring some new trends into the mix when figuring out how to style your flannel, all while keeping you comfortable and warm.