Best Short Sleeve Cardigan Ideas to Elevate Your Look

Cardigans have always been in style but the new trend is short sleeve cardigans. They are ideal for chilly summer evenings or picnics in the park. You can either go bold with a patterned print or keep your outfit simple with basic colors.

While it can be overwhelming choosing your next short sleeve cardigan to add to your wardrobe, I am here to help you find the best short sleeve cardigan to elevate your summertime look.

The Bottom Line Up Front

If you are wanting a quick review on the best short sleeve cardigans to buy then look no further. Here are my top 6 hottest short-sleeve cardigan ideas:

  1. White short sleeve cardigan – think summer nights and spring dresses.
  2. Pastel short sleeve cardigan – perfect for springtime brunches. 
  3. Patterned short sleeve cardigan – an iconic statement piece. 
  4. Cropped short sleeve cardigan – super trendy and comfortable. 
  5. Fluffy short sleeve cardigan – Y2K fashion and will keep you warm.
  6. Basic short sleeve cardigan – the must-haves to build your wardrobe. 

Make sure you look at brands like SHEIN, ASOS & Monki for affordable short sleeve cardigans. 

What is a Short Sleeve Cardigan?

A short-sleeve cardigan is a perfect cover-up for summer nights or a comfortable layer in the winter. It is a versatile and trendy fashion item. In this review, I will be going through the best short sleeve cardigans for you to choose from. 

White Short Sleeve Cardigan

White Short Sleeve Cardigan

Now, this is the cardigan that first comes to my mind when I think of a short sleeved cardigan. It is perfect for spring and matches almost any outfit. This is usually affordable and a must-have for your wardrobe. 

Pros

  • A spring wardrobe fashion item
  • Goes with almost any outfit 
  • Perfect for layering up 
  • Easy to buy

Cons

  • Doesn’t stand out 
  • Only one colour option

Where Can I Buy a White Short Sleeve Cardigan?

Affordable: Monki is the best for a simple yet affordable short sleeve cardigan. This cardigan is budget-friendly and goes with any outfit – what more could you ask for? 

Splurge: Sandro is selling a white short sleeved cardigan that stands out much more than the budget-friendly cardigans. It has a scalloped collar and large ornament buttons. This can be worn as a more professional look, while still looking cute and summery. 

Pastel Short Sleeve Cardigan

Pastel Short Sleeve Cardigan

If you think the white short sleeve cardigan is a perfect spring wardrobe item then just wait till you take a look at pastel short-sleeve cardigans.

These practically spell out ‘spring’ with cute baby pink, blue, and mint green colors that can you choose from. These cardigans are super trendy and are best to bring out in the spring or summer months. 

Pros

  • Perfect for the spring or summer months 
  • Trendy & colourful
  • Easy to buy 

Cons

  • Hard to wear in the winter months 
  • Can sometimes be difficult to pair with outfits 

Where Can I Buy a Pastel Short Sleeve Cardigan?

Affordable: Head to ASOS for your next budget-friendly pastel short sleeve cardigan. This baby pink button-up cardigan is the perfect cover-up if you are wearing a white summer dress. It has a slim fit and is a bargain!

Splurge: SANDRO is giving varsity vibes with their baby pink knitted short sleeve cardigan. This cardigan has a rounded neckline and knitted design that will keep you warm on summer nights. Pair this with light-wash jeans and you’ll be looking cute and sophisticated. 

Like the knitted style? If you want a more budget-friendly ‘knitted style’ pastel short sleeved cardigan then head to J.ING for a baby blue knitted cardigan. This button-up cardigan is in a beautiful baby blue colour and matches most spring/summer outfits. 

Patterned Short Sleeve Cardigan

Patterned Short Sleeve Cardigan

A patterned cardigan can make a statement look. The good news is that patterned short sleeve cardigans are the trendy clothing item at the moment. Why is this good news? Well, it means these cardigans are super affordable!  

Pros

  • Budget-friendly 
  • Trendy  
  • Stand out cardigan
  • Lots of options to buy 

Cons

  • Hard to match with different outfits 

Where Can I Buy a Patterned Short Sleeve Cardigan?

SHEIN: SHEIN offers many options for patterned short sleeve cardigans. They have the perfect floral patterned short sleeve cardigan on offer. This cardigan is perfect for outdoor picnics or brunch with friends. 

If you are wanted to be a trendsetter then head over to SHEIN and buy their patterned Argyle cardigan. This cardigan is super preppy and the black and white colors stand out against a plain white dress underneath. It is the ideal cardigan for a date night or lunch with friends. 

Pacsun: If you really want to stand out then head over to Pacsun for a yin-yang design cardigan. While this might be hard to style, try and pair this with a dark pair of jeans and large sunglasses. 

Cropped Short Sleeve Cardigan

Cropped Short Sleeve Cardigan

Anything cropped is trendy! While it might not be the warmest option, you will be looking fashionable and this cropped cardigan look can elevate most looks. 

Pros

  • Trendy
  • Versatile 
  • Different colors and patterns to choose from

Cons

  • Won’t keep you warm

Where Can I Buy a Cropped Short Sleeve Cardigan?

Splurge: Tropic of C is selling a gorgeous peachy pink cropped short sleeve cardigan. It’s off-shoulder and has a knitted material, plus its cropped! 

Affordable: SHEIN is selling a budget-friendly knitted cardigan in a gorgeous lemon colour. This short sleeve cardigan has a ribbed, slim fit design that can be worn on its own. It’s cropped, meaning you can show off your stomach in the summertime. 

Worried about being cold? Cropped short sleeve cardigans don’t scream ‘warmth’ to me but you can still buy a cardigan to keep you warm if you know what to look for. Farfetch is selling a cotton/cashmere cropped cardigan that has large ornament buttons on it. While this is still a cropped short sleeve cardigan, its material makes it a warm cover-up on chilly evenings.

Fluffy Short Sleeve Cardigan

Fluffy Short Sleeve Cardigan

Fluff, fluff and more fluff! Anything with fluff on it is the new trendy item of 2022. Think fluffy handbags, fluffy phone cases and even fluffy short sleeve cardigans. 

Pros

  • Super stylish 
  • Keeps you warm

Cons

  • Not as suitable in the summer months 
  • Hard to wash 

Where Can I Buy a Fluffy Short Sleeve Cardigan?

H&M is selling the hottest trending cardigan at the moment. Coming in either white, black or hot pink, you can get your hands on the trending fluffy short sleeve cardigan. You can wear this cardigan either on its own or with a matching colour tank top underneath. This cardigan is ideal for nights out with friends. 

Want to wear a fluffy cardigan in the summer? Head to Cider for a key-lime fluffy cardigan that would look perfect during a summer picnic. Wear this fluffy cardigan with a summer dress and sandals, and you’ll be oozing summer vibes.

Basic Short Sleeve Cardigan

Basic Short Sleeve Cardigan

What’s a basic short sleeve cardigan? Every wardrobe needs ‘basic’ items. This means colors like white, brown, black, and cream. These colors match with almost any outfit and can help you create tons of new looks!

Pros

  • A must-have to add to your wardrobe
  • Lots of options to choose from (basic colors like white, cream and black)

Cons

  • Doesn’t stand out 

Where Can I Buy a Basic Short Sleeve Cardigan?

Splurge: Harumio has a simple yet elegant basic short sleeve cardigan you can buy. This polo short sleeve cardigan is the creamiest thing I have ever laid eyes on and is perfect to add to your spring wardrobe. 

Affordable: Abercrombie is selling an affordable black short sleeve cardigan. This short sleeve cardigan has ruffled hems that give you a slim fit. Grab this cardigan for the winter months and you’ll be wearing it constantly. 

What Can I Wear a Short Sleeve Cardigan with?

White short sleeve cardigan: This cardigan can go with almost anything! Think colourful dresses, light wash jeans that you can layer your white cardigan with. I would try and avoid anything black underneath as it would clash too harshly.

Pastel short sleeve cardigan: I would recommend wearing a pastel cardigan with your favourite pair of jeans. It makes the outfit look more sophisticated and makes the cardigan stand out. A trendy fashion statement to wear in spring after the cold winter months. 

Patterned short sleeve cardigan: Be ahead of the trends by wearing an argyle patterned short sleeve cardigan or bold design cardigan. Keep your clothes underneath plain so that your cardigan can really pop. 

Cropped short sleeve cardigan: Wear a cropped cardigan either on its own or with a matching cropped vest top. Many retail sites sell matching sets of cropped cardigans & vests (ie Monki, ASOS & SHEIN). Pair with your favourite jeans and sandals, and you’ll be rocking a trendy summer look. 

Fluffy short sleeve cardigan: If it is winter then this can be the perfect cardigan to layer an outfit with. A puffer coat, tank top, fluffy cardigan makes the best combo in the winter. If you are wanting to wear a fluffy short-sleeve cardigan in the summer then look for pastel colors and a bright sundress to elevate your look. 

Basic short sleeve cardigan: Once you have your basic colors added to your wardrobe (black, cream, chocolate & white) you can have a lot of fun experimenting with new outfit ideas. Basic colors mean you can be creative with the colors underneath the cardigan. Think bold print jeans or a patterned tank top underneath. 

On its Own!

Night Pearl Cardigan - Light Blue

A new trend is to wear a short sleeve cardigan on its own. Now, this might be a risky move so make sure you have boob tape at hand (you don’t want a spillage!).

You can buy some cute short-sleeve cardigans that have a glamorous accessory on its clasp. For example, if you want to splurge then head to SSENSE for a neon pink short sleeved cardigan. It has a diamond style accessory clasping the cardigan together and is perfect for your next night out. 

If you want something on the cheaper side then head to Fashion Nova for a cheap blue frilled short sleeve cardigan. This light blue cardigan is perfect to wear on its own. You can either wear it on a night out or a summer picnic, as it gives the best spring vibes. 

FAQs

Question: How do You Wear a Short Sleeve Cardigan?

Answer: I would recommend wearing a short sleeve cardigan with either a summer dress or a pair of light-wash jeans. Keep the rest of the outfit simple so you can show off your new short-sleeve cardigan. 

Question: How do You Wear a Short Sleeve Cardigan in the Winter?

Answer: Buy a fluffy cardigan or a knitted short sleeve cardigan to keep yourself warm. Don’t forget to layer by adding a large puffer jacket and thick gloves. I would avoid wearing a scarf if possible as you still want to show off your short-sleeve cardigan. If you are really worried about being cold, pack an extra sweater in your bag to layer up outside. 

Question: What is the Best Short Sleeve Cardigan to Buy?

Answer: Now this depends on how budget-friendly you want to be! The cheaper you go usually you are limited on the quality of the cardigan. Brands like FARFETCH and Tropic of C produce good quality short-sleeved cardigans but have a high price tag. Head to SHEIN or ASOS if you are wanting to save some cash but be aware of the quality of the garment you will receive. 
In terms of what type of short sleeve cardigan to buy, I would recommend a fluffy cardigan in the winter, a pastel cardigan in the spring, and a white cardigan in the summer. 

Final Thoughts

I would 100% recommend at least buying a white short sleeve cardigan to add to your wardrobe. The white short sleeve cardigan can go with almost any outfit and is perfect for the spring/summer months. 

All of the short sleeve cardigan ideas I have given should help you make your decision on the perfect short sleeve cardigan to buy. Make sure you are aware of the seasons, what social events you have coming up, and what stores are most affordable for you.

Short sleeve cardigans are trending hot at the moment so you can find one in almost any retail store. Short sleeve cardigans are the perfect fashion item for keeping yourself warm but also showing off your brand-new outfit underneath.

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