Posted on: May 23, 2024 Posted by: Comments: 0

Here’s something I’ve been wanting to talk about for a while: are women’s vests appropriate for work in 2024? If you’re wearing them, are you wearing them as styled on every site (i.e., by themselves) or are you layering shirts beneath them? Which of the myriad types of vests out there is your favorite — knit, waistcoat, longer/split hem, double-breasted, belted, or something else?

Just to set the stage for you, these are some of the vests I’m seeing out there right now…





I think they’re an interesting trend because they’re more structured/tailored than a lot of the clothes we’re seeing out there, especially for WFH or business casual offices… yet I also feel like for a lot of conservative offices, going sleeveless can be dicey, as can showing a bit of midriff (know your office!) They’re also a quickly changing trend (as you’ll see below), adding yet another layer of “know your office.”

So I’m curious — are you wearing vests, readers? Are you seeing all of the vests in your offices, or are these kind of the new “shorts suits” in that they seem work-appropriate but probably are not (know your office, of course)…

Recent Trends in Women’s Vests

It’s funny because I feel like vests have been trending for a while now, but they keep changing the exact style — we’ve gone from the drapey knit vests, to cropped sweater vests, to the fitted waistcoat look (still in, I think!), to the latest looks, with longer vests that can be double-breasted, belted, or split hem and intended only to be buttoned at the very top.

(Weirdly enough, we haven’t swung back around to the men’s-vests-over-drapey-blouses à la Labyrinth and Heathers (lousy photos here and here), so clearly that’s going to come next…)

Some of the looks from recent years…

In fact, when we last discussed vests in 2015, this was the little collage I put together…

So trends are definitely moving quickly with women’s vests!

My $.02…

For my $.02, I think this is very much a know your office situation. I absolutely adore the waistcoat vest-with-blazer-and-suit look, but in my experience those vests can be pretty low cut, and the buttons can be gapey, also… so in practicality they’ve never worked for me.

I think the longer belted vests are my next favorite for work — they can be a sleek and polished look, and are usually meant to have something worn beneath them. But I know a lot of women feel that a belted, wrapped look isn’t the most flattering, along with the fact that they’re usually styled sleeveless, so I think we’re only going to see it in practice on a few number of people.

I’m biased against double-breasted looks because I almost never feel like a double-breasted jacket is flattering, on anyone. With double-breasted jackets, those are often meant to be unbuttoned when sitting because they gape in weird ways — but if you’re wearing it as a top by itself that’s going to be hard to do.

The split hem looks are, IMHO, the ones that are best left to weekends… the Tuckernuck version above is one of the most work appropriate I’ve seen (Ann Taylor is down to lucky sizes in this one, but it’s another option) — but in stores I’m most often seeing them like this or this, with the midriff exposed.


Ann Taylor


Alex Mill / Nordstrom

The post Are Vests Appropriate for Work in 2024? appeared first on

Leave a Comment