Why Is Everyone Tying Sweaters Over Their Coats?

Street style has spoken: Sweaters are scarves with sleeves now.

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There are street style trends you expect to see when heading into a Fall/Winter season at New York Fashion Week. Shearling coats, maybe, or perhaps corduroy suits. Sweaters fall into this category, too, but the knitwear I saw outside the Fall/Winter 2024 shows is not the the knitwear I recognize from my half-decade of attending fashion week. No, the sweater styling this season is just plain unconventional.

They're being tied around the necks of fashion insiders like cable-knit cashmere scarves. They're being worn as belts. They're being layered, one over the top of the other, without a coat or jacket. In one case, a sweater was worn not around the neck, but over the actual arms of an overcoat. In another, a knit was tied diagonally across an attendee's body. Even Sofia Richie-Grainge got in on the trend while attending the Tommy Hilfiger show by wearing a cream-colored knit across the shoulders of her trench coat.

While I admire the drive to wear sweaters like they've never been worn before, I have one question for the group: Is anyone considering the damage all this knotting could do to the shape of your sweater's poor sleeves? I'm scared to hang my cashmere in a closet, let alone tie it in a knot across my torso. Regardless, I trust fashion's best-dressed to not lead me astray. Is this a puzzling fashion week street-style trend or a call to re-think the most fundamental piece in my winter wardrobe as the cold weather reaches its end? I'm erring on the side of the latter. Here's to bringing insouciance back to winter style.

Ahead, I've rounded up some of the best (and most out-of-the-box) ways sweaters have been styled over New York Fashion Week. Let this be your inspiration to forgo a coat altogether as the tricky transitional weather period begins. Maybe a sweater is more versatile than I previously thought.

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Even Sofia Sofia Richie-Grainge got in on the scarf-sweater action.

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Starting off semi-normal with a sweater over a coordinating gray suit.

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A gray sweater as a relaxed scarf!

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A purple sweater *on* a white sweater!

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Here, a sweater over the top of the sleeves of a jacket.

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Again, a sweater-on-sweater combination sans coat.

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Monochromatic sweater-scarf action.

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Why not try a sweater as a belt?

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A pop of color, via a sweater-scarf.

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Another classic gray sweater-as-scarf combination.

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Jade Tillman Belmes/Getty Images

This scarf loves to be tied diagonally across the body.

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Christian Vierig/Getty Images

A scarf on a scarf on a button-down.

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Christian Vierig/Getty Images

Another scarf-on-blazer-on-sweater combination.

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Red is trending, especially when worn over an all-black outfit.

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Sweaters NYFW

Now this is a transitional outft: scarf on jacket on shirt on shorts.

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