Women's Charcoal V-Neck Cardigan

woman wearing charcoal sweater

A women's charcoal V-neck cardigan is one of the most versatile and effortless pieces available. Perfect for throwing on with everything from jeans to dresses, this comfortable sweater will see you through cold weather in style.

Basic Cardigans

The cardigan may be a basic, but it is actually anything but basic. Thanks to a myriad of updated designs, color variations, patterns and even fabrics, the new breed of cardigans are quite unique. Though they may differ in terms of pattern, fabric, or color, a defining feature of this sweater type is that the cardigan's neckline tends to be either round or V-shaped. Both are classic and ideal for showing off a striking collarbone, décolletage or a pretty top underneath.

Wearing Charcoal

Despite all the brilliantly colored cardigans available on the market today, there is always a need for a neutral or two. While blacks, browns and whites are all quite common, variations of charcoal have grown in popularity over the years. Charcoal, in fact, is a color that routinely pops up on the radar at the first sign of cold weather. It is rich and dark, yet less severe than black. It also looks phenomenal with just about every color of the rainbow.

Charcoal is also available in a variety of shades. There are lighter versions that are ideal for women who prefer less harsh tones, and there are darker shades that scream "charcoal" from miles away. No matter which tone you choose, you can count on it to be extremely versatile and play well with most pieces in your existing wardrobe.

A V-neck style in a dark color like charcoal can provide a very slimming look. Choosing a cardigan in this dark shade is also a very classy look, and because of this sweater type's timeless appeal, you'll get plenty of wear and styling opportunities out of it.

Styling a Women's Charcoal V-Neck Cardigan

V-neck cardigans allow women the opportunity to show off a peek of the top underneath. For that reason, many women choose to wear a sexy camisole underneath. Often accented by lace, beadwork or another type of fancy embellishment, camisoles do not usually look appropriate worn alone. Underneath a V-neck cardigan, though, they really stand out, especially in a contrasting shade. Charcoal in particular looks great with a touch of red or, on the lighter end of the spectrum, peach or violet.

In addition to color, pay attention to these factors when shopping for a women's charcoal V-neck cardigan:

  • Length: These days, cardigans run the gamut from cropped to coat-length. Consider your existing wardrobe when deciding which to choose. A cropped cardigan is cutesy and rather youthful in design, and tends to look best over a dress or sleek pants. Women with full hips may wish to avoid this particular cut, since it exposes that area quite plainly. Long cardigans, on the other hand, are extremely versatile, can be worn casually over jeans or over a flirty dress for a bohemian-chic look. Finally, coat lengths are wonderful to wear later in the year, when it is not quite cold enough to warrant a winter coat, yet still brisk enough to require something plush and long.
  • Design: Though the great majority of charcoal sweaters are solid in color, there are plenty that incorporate some sort of pattern into their designs. You'll find everything from polka dots to stripes. If you're planning to wear your charcoal sweater to, say, the office, you may wish to avoid such playful prints in favor of a simple, conservative solid. If your goal is to find a cardigan that can be worn out and about, on weekends or over a dress, you can push the boat out a bit and go for something with a bit of flair.
  • Embellishments: It's not unusual to find charcoal cardigans that work various embellishments into their designs, like ruffles, sequins and silk trims. These are all quite classic, but again, think about where you plan to wear your cardigan before purchasing it. Sequins and ruffles are not work-appropriate, but silk trim, diminutive gold buttons and houndstooth prints would all work well in conservative environments.

Shopping Tips

There are plenty of brands out there that carry charcoal V-neck sweaters, so whittling down your favorites may prove challenging if you're the indecisive sort. Consider these tips:

  • If you're on a budget, visit stores like Old Navy and New York and Company. Both sell an excellent selection of basic V-neck cardigans year round at very reasonable prices.
  • If cost is not a concern, look to luxury department stores, like Barneys New York and Saks Fifth Avenue. These stores carry beautiful charcoal V-neck cardigans by labels like Diane von Furstenberg, Alexander Wang and Tory Burch, to name a few.
  • As with any garment, try your sweater on first. A V-neck may be classic, but the sweater itself may be cut in a way that is unflattering to your body. Ensure that it drapes and falls properly and does not call attention to any trouble spots.
  • Pay attention to the specific shade of charcoal, too. Ensure that it does not wash you out.

With these tips in mind, you're sure to find a cardigan that you will enjoy for years.

Women's Charcoal V-Neck Cardigan