Holigay 2013 Gift Guide: When In Doubt, Cardigan


Welcome to the 2013 Holiday season, darling humans! You may or may not know this about me, but I love cardigans. I bought my first one in 2005 and have been steadily accumulating them ever since. At last count, I was up to around 50 cardigans total. So it’s no wonder, really, that I’m here making this gift guide.

A sneak peek at my upcoming epic cardizine where I catalogue each of the cardigans I own or have owned through the last 8 years. Posting it here means I will definitely follow through on this massive endeavor, right?

A sneak peek at my upcoming epic cardizine where I catalogue each of the cardigans I own or have owned throughout the last 8 years. Posting it here means I will definitely follow through on this massive endeavor, right?

Maybe I’m biased, but I think cardigans are the perfect gift for anyone this holiday season. They are so versatile that they can be dressed up or down, and be worn across the gender presentation spectrum. There is a cardigan for every human ever, no matter what, which I think is really magical.

Wanting to know more about this mystical article of clothing, I did some research and found the following fascinating bit of history:

“The cardigan was named after James Brudenell, 7th Earl of Cardigan, a British Army Major General who led the Charge of the Light Brigade at the Battle of Balaclava during the Crimean War. It is modelled after the knitted wool waistcoat that British officers supposedly wore during the war. The legend of the event and the fame that Brudenell achieved after the war led to the rise of the garment’s popularity. The term originally referred only to a knitted sleeveless vest, but expanded to other types of garment over time.”

How cool is that? Cardigans are wearable bits of history!

So without further adieu, here is a list of 10 cardigans which any human in the world would probably love:

1. I’ll Miss Mew Cardigan

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A cat cardigan. Need I say more?

2. Home Team Player Cardigan

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This one looks so cozy, and I love the gray/green color pairing.

3. Feeling Sedimental Cardigan

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If something has elbow patches, there is a 99% chance I will buy that thing. I also really like the chunky knit on this one and the punny name.

4. The Artful Badger Cardigan

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I think this one speaks for itself.

5. Easy to be Cozy Cardigan

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I have a grey cardigan just like this and it is my favorite one. It’s cozy and really versatile, I highly recommend it.

6. Downtime to Shine Cardigan

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This is the only color cardigan I don’t own, which is crazy because it’s such a beautiful color that would match so many things! This one also looks really warm! Which is probably an important factor in buying a cardigan that I neglect, since I live in Florida.

7. Spot-On Style Cardigan

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Polka dots are always appropriate. Always. This is long enough to wear with a pair of leggings and boots, which is also appropriate, as well as adorable.

8. Muffin Run Cardigan

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This is like a cardigan/jacket hybrid. And it’s perfect. The toggle details, pattern and hood all just really sold me.

9. Grey Marl Texture Cardigan

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There is no human in the world who would not benefit from a grey cardigan. They are the most versatile of all cardigans. I love the texture of this one.

10. Country Club Date Cardigan

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I don’t know. I just thought you guys might be interested in this one.


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Cotton Cardigan Decorative Throw Pillow: I think I may have a problem.

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Chelsey is a previous Editorial Assistant for Autostraddle and currently resides in Los Angeles with her cat Olive and a large collection of cardigans. She enjoys drinking coffee/tea, writing, editing, and validating the humans in her life.

Chelsey has written 52 articles for us.


  1. I can feel your love for cardigays radiating through my computer screen.

    Also I mistyped cardigan as cardigay NO REGRETS

  2. Badgers OMG. I should probably start an animal patterned cardigan obsession immediately to go with my recent infatuation with patterned pants.

    • I will take your word on this…cardigans are something to be estimated and esteemed, and don’t you forget it!

  3. i would be really open to receiving the cabled elbow-patched one, just throwing that out there, universe

  4. Cardigans – yes, so much, all the time please. #2 looks basically *perfect*.

    Also more importantly, I want your cardizine so much! What do we have to do to make that a thing?

  5. I have a grey cardigan (see #9) and I can attest that it is incredibly versatile. It pairs with so many colors and the waffle texture is comfy and cute.

  6. I could not be more excited about the cardigan catalogue! You must do it!

    It’s like the story of your life through cardigans!

  7. Easy to be Cozy (love lighter blue) and Muffin Run are both snuggle goodness. Also love the cotton throw pillow, the perfect accessory for a lazy Sunday afternoon.

  8. I’ve been searching for a good cardigan! I’ve actually never owned one, but my colder than the rest of the entire house bedroom has convinced me I need one.

  9. None of those cardigans cost less than $40.00, which seems a bit ridiculous to me. I get the cardigan love. But is it normal to pay that much for a thin sweater?

    • +1 to Target all day every day. Also, Old Navy and H&M have a treasure trove of cardigans that won’t break the bank.

  10. God, I am ashamed that I only own 2 cardigans… neither of which fit.

    (90% sure one’s coming for Christmas since I found it and sent it to my mother with a discount code and free shipping code)

  11. Just bought a shawl collar cardigan (and two shawl collar sweaters) and it/they better be as amazing as I hope.

  12. i thought the day you pitched this article was the best day of my life, but then we actually published it and now i need to reevaluate.

    i want every single item on this list.

    i also want to purchase your cardizine. (holigay gifts for next year?)

    i also love you, truly madly deeply.

  13. Oh my glob, these are so lovely. I really like the Topman grey marl cardigan.

    Speaking of Topman, there is a Topshop/Topman finally opening in my hometown of Brisbane! And it opens on my birthday! Grey cardigans, dapper blazers, and cute socks, here I come! :)

  14. I live a cardigan loving life and if I could live in them and scarves and beanies and boots forever I’d be the happiest camper. These are seriously making me want to go out and update my teensy collection.

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