Art of Style

Lessons In Layering: The Season’s Must-Try Styling Tricks

From after-dark tops worn over everyday T-shirts to head-to-toe tonal looks – here’s the lowdown on how to layer this season

Words Grace Cook, Kara KiaFashion editor Hannah Cole
A denim or leather jacket, a blazer, a crisp shirt, a white tank top or tee: these are all wardrobe staples that are perfect for everyday layering this fall

The fall season heralds the opportunity to gravitate towards our coziest separates and also allows us to wear multiple pieces at once. Done properly, wrapping up amid gradually declining temperatures can be a masterclass in multifunctional dressing, where layering separates can seamlessly take you from dawn to dusk; alfresco to inside – and negate the need for bulky outerwear on cooler days when you want to feel polished. But how do you curate your closet for the season ahead? Here’s how to navigate the art of layering this autumn.

Basics don’t have to be boring

That back-to-school mentality never dissipates — even into adulthood, as September rolls around again, it feels like it’s time to double down on the hard-working staples that will see us through the shifting temperature in style. And, this season, the easiest way to make those core closet pieces feel fresh is all in the styling: think business-like shirts from in fluid proportions, styled over a crisp white tank from which instantly takes this look from boardroom to brunch-casual. Paired with and a relaxed blazer from this look is giving ’90s-minimalist-on-a-New-York-commute vibes – especially when teamed with a pair of retro-look sneakers.

‘Winterize’ your dresses

Colder weather doesn’t mean you have to pack away all your favorite – instead, make them fall/winter-ready with smart separates. For example, long-sleeved dresses with a playful knitted vest layered on top are perfect for the transition into cooler days. ‘Jen Fair Isle’ knit features hot-pink hues that will brighten up the softer pastel shades found in floral midi dress; plus, the ruffled grandad collar will look cool popping out from beneath the crew-neck sweater. To keep the silhouette chic and city-ready, slip on a cone-heeled knee boot from for added edge, then look to supersized bag and gold-tone jewelry to amp up the grown-up feel.

Warm up a beloved summer dress for fall with a playful knitted vest
Use different textures of the same color to create a stylish head-to-toe tonal outfit

Embrace tonal textures

A crew-neck sweater is one of the most versatile pieces in your closet, thanks to its easy ability to be worn on its own or under everything from crisp shirts to slinky dresses. But, this season, layering one with a tonal cardigan will feel like a fresh base upon which to build a head-to-toe tonal outfit. Consider sumptuous, cashmere-blend gray crew-neck sweater as your canvas, worn underneath soft gray cardigan. Or, amp up the back-to-school mood with woolen pencil skirt with a playtime-ready thigh-high cutout. Add over-the-knee sock boots, ‘Puzzle’ bag, plus everyday diamonds from for an effortlessly polished look.

Channel Y2K with a skirt over pants

When fall comes round, tougher fabrics and oversized fits are a fail-safe choice, but a versatile can add softness to layered silhouettes. The ruby-rich midi from will dial up the autumnal palette of any look – and with its waterfall hemline and lace appliqué, it perfectly balances the lightness and fluidity of the warmer months with a fall/winter satin fabrication. Layer it over tights and boots for an effortless transition, or toughen it up with an oversized leather jacket from and track pants from x Alternatively, look to penny loafers to temper pretty separates and lighter materials.

A delicate skirt worn over pants adds a seasonal softness to layered silhouettes
A white T-shirt or fitted top are all you need to adapt your dinner staples for daytime wear

Make an evening top work double-duty

‘Jeans and a nice top’ have long-been a sartorial mainstay of the after-dark wardrobe, but who says your favorite eveningwear should be reserved strictly for night-time hours? Turn your dinner staples into daytime essentials by layering over a crisp white T-shirt — ideal for smart-casual events or for adding a touch of glamor to an office-ready look. strapless crinkle-cut top is perfectly paired over slouchy tee — add stonewashed jeans from and classic ‘The Chelsea Long’ for a wear-anywhere look.


The people featured in this story are not associated with NET-A-PORTER and do not endorse it or the products shown