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Knitwear & Sweaters

Four ways to wear: A grey sweatshirt

Four ways to wear: A grey sweatshirt

If you consider grey sweatshirts gym garb, think again: buy one that fits like a jumper and you can wear it with everything from shorts to formal trousers. "You don't need a stylist to tell you that a sweatshirt looks great with jeans," says Thread’s style director, Shaunie Brett. "But it's more of a challenge to up the smartness to make it smart casual—or even just part of a slightly more put-together casual look." 

This sweatshirt in particular can go smart because its sleeves are "set in" rather than "raglan"—meaning the shoulder seams run along the corners of the shoulders instead of from the neck to the shoulders. This set-in sleeve makes the sweatshirt more jumperlike, and therefore a notch smarter. 

Here, Shaunie shares five sweatshirt-centric outfit ideas, from smart to casual.

1. For a casual Friday (if your office is smart)

The outfit: Grey sweatshirt, white shirt, formal trousers, leather lace-up shoes

Why this works: "Wearing formal trousers with a casual sweatshirt is the same as wearing a blazer with jeans; you're making one item of clothing more casual, but keeping the rest of your outfit smart. This works particularly well because the formal trousers are fairly slim, like the sweatshirt."

Photographed: Research Garments grey sweatshirt (£35), Only & Sons white shirt (£26), Jigsaw navy houndstooth trousers (£54)

2. For an afternoon that might turn into an evening out

The outfit: Grey sweatshirt, chambray shirt, navy chinos, desert shoes

Why this works: "This is such a classic weekend outfit. Everything's a bit interchangeable: you could make this more casual by wearing trainers instead of desert boots, or a t-shirt instead of a shirt. But as it is here, it works casually or a bit smarter: the shoes and chinos make this outfit appropriate for a nice dinner out."

Photographed: Research Garments grey sweatshirt (£35), Our Legacy chambray shirt (£115), Gant navy chinos (£140), Sanders desert shoes (£129)

3. For a Sunday at the pub

The outfit: Grey sweatshirt, t-shirt, mid-blue jeans, Harrington jacket

Why this works: "This is great because the minimal trainers and practical, stylish jacket make it look a bit more thought through than just jeans and a sweatshirt."

 Photographed: Research Garments grey sweatshirt (£35), Selected Homme navy Harrington jacket (£32), A.P.C blue jeans (£135), All Saints grey desert boots (£74) 

4. For a day that fluctuates between hot and cool

The outfit: Grey sweatshirt, white t-shirt, chino shorts and slip-on trainers

Why this works: "A grey sweatshirt is an easy jacket alternative for summer: You can chuck it in a bag and it won't wrinkle, plus it won't make you too warm because grey doesn't absorb heat. Again, simple, light trainers give this a nicer look than it would have with your running shoes; you could also wear boat shoes to go a touch preppier."

Photographed: Research Garments grey sweatshirt (£35), Research Garments white t-shirt (£15)