Dear Lucky: What's the Best Length For A Summer Cardigan?

I need new cardigans for summer, when I’m going from sweltering to office AC … What’s the trendiest length? Long boyfriend cardigans? Or a fitted, waist-length, more professional-type thing? —Karen

A: Dear Karen,

Trendy, according to associate market editor Noelle Sciacca, a.k.a. Cardigan Editor, is on the slouchier, boyfriendier side at the moment. Noelle particularly loves a “mixed media” sweater right now—where the sleeves and body of the sweater are made of different fabrics, say, a knit body with silk sleeves or a silk back.

Trend aside, you’re talking office. The role of the office cardigan in summer, as far as I’m concerned, is to make cool, skimpy, unprofessional pieces look appropriate, as well as warm the wearer. Fitted literally pulls everything together, as Our Lady of the Cardigan Michelle Obama—who always needs to look vaguely professional—illustrates. Executive fashion director Alexis Bryan Morgan agrees; further, she votes for cotton, as Michelle often does. “The thing in summer is staying fresh,” says Alexis. “Cotton in a classic color—navy, white, gray, black—it goes with everything. Leave it at the office and you’re set.” Alexis adds that a fitted navy jacket also solves any skimpiness/chilliness problem. She likes Rag & Bone, Juicy Couture and Madewell for navy jackets; hang one in your office and take a fashion risk this summer, knowing you can sharpen it right up with your fitted cardigan/jacket whenever you need to.

Michelle Obama will go down in history for many things; her way with cardigans will undoubtedly be one of them.

Image: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

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