Styling dresses for colder weather – a cold blooded person’s guide

Yes, my fellow cold-blooded dress lovers. It is possible to wear dresses in the cold.

Know what layers well

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It’s not secret that key to wearing dresses in the fall and winter is to layer. Off-the-shoulder dresses are adorable in the spring and summer, but those sleeves can really get in the way if you’re throwing a jacket over them. Midi length dresses are great with bare legs, but not all of them look good with tights.

Before you buy a dress, try picturing it with tights and a cardigan/blazer. That’ll save you from having nothing to wear when the colder months come. I gravitate towards fitted, dark coloured dresses without long sleeves.



Consider the rest of your outfit

Since a dress won’t be keeping you warm, the rest of your outfit better be. Have proper outerwear, wear a scarf, and don’t wear open toed shoes. Undershirts, such as plain camisoles, are a seamless way to keep your core warm.

I’m going to sound like a broken record, but pay attention to the material your clothes are made from. It’s possible to freeze in a thick, cheaply made cardigan. It’s also possible to stay perfectly cozy in a thin, well made one.



Invest in a few fall/winter dresses

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Many summer dresses could transition to fall dresses with the right layers. But there are also knit dresses made specifically for colder temperatures.

I used to not like the feeling of cowl necks and turtlenecks, but now I find them so elegant. If you’re new to knit dresses, I suggest buying two to start. One in a basic shade like black, cream, or charcoal. And one in a colour like burgundy, mauve, or navy.

Once again, pay attention to material and the tightness of the knit.



Good leg-wear is key

65+ Trendy Ideas skirt with tights and boots long cardigan #skirt #bootsLooks con medias negras - Trendtation

So you’ve layered up and kept your upper body cozy. But don’t forget your legs! If you leave your legs cold, you’re going to be uncomfortable anyways.

Similar to knit dresses, invest in a few pairs of top quality knit tights. I say “a few pairs” because having options keeps layering fun and not annoying. My mom bought me a pair of $15-$20 knit tights three years ago, and they’re still lasting! Only recently I poked a small hole in them with my dagger nail…oops!



Choose the right day

We all have different tolerances for cold. If you’re like me and have a low “cold threshold”, you’d have to pick the day for a dress. What will you being doing that day? How much time would you be spending outdoors? What are the temperatures like?

This may be tedious to consider, but it’s necessary. Wouldn’t you rather be comfortable while looking cute?



In conclusion…

It really sucks when your environment limits your fashion choices. But there are ways to adapt your favorite styles to the environment! As Elle Woods said, “don’t fight the fabric, change it.”


What is a garment you’d love to wear year-round?


Hugs and kisses,

~ Jin

You can also find me on my personal blog 







Author: Jin Cao

I am a multi-faceted designer, fashion blogger, makeup enthusiast, lover of cats, and connoisseur of ramen! Writer of Main fashion writer of Find my work at

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