How to Dress Up a Hoodie: 3 Different Ways

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You have clothes in your closet. And yet if you’re anything like me you tend to categorize them and wear them only for the occasions/events that they were meant to be worn. I’m here to turn that upside down. I wanted to show how to dress up a hoodie and each of us approached it differently.

Would it work in your closet? Of course, it would. Just try all kinds of options and have fun.

MSN readers click here for all of the photos and widgets.

Quote of the day: “Originality thrives in seclusion free of outside influences beating upon us to cripple the creative mind.” Nikola Tesla

That quote seems a bit extreme when it says to cripple the creative mind. Yet I bet all of us have felt that overshadowing feeling that an outfit doesn’t “fit” the rules. Maybe it’s because we were told that something isn’t appropriate for our age group, or that we don’t look as tall and thin as we should.
Heck, it could be something as simple as the fact that a hoodie is considered athleisurewear and very casual, so why would we even consider the idea of how to dress up a hoodie?

How to dress up a hoodie
What is a hoodie
Wear it under a blazer or jacket
Style it under an overall dress
Throw it on over a dress

While I love promoting new clothing or brands, I also think by this time in our life we have a bunch of fabulous things in our closet.
And if we get out of our heads more often, we could wear them in so many different ways.

What is a Hoodie

If you look up the definition of a hoodie you will see that it’s classified as outerwear. And most of the time, they are sweatshirt material. But that doesn’t mean they can’t be worn layered under items or that you can’t find t-shirt material or sweater material hoodies.

None of these factors change the concept of how to dress up a hoodie. It doesn’t matter what material it is or which department you bought it at the store.
Heck, it could be a men’s hoodie and still be worn fabulously.

Related post: Sampler of 5 hoodie outfits

Insider tip: Stop thinking of the shirt as a “hoodie” and consider it a top with a fun add-on. And beyond that, it’s not just for casual or workout!! I think we have succeeded in showing how to dress up a hoodie with our examples.
After reading this, make sure to pin it, then go to your closet, try out a couple of outfits, and wear one this week.

You should definitely sign up for the emails below. Besides the free eBook, my email family gets personal tidbits of what’s going on in my life along with other happenings, sales, information, giveaways, extra photos, and interesting articles.

Wear It Under a Jacket or Blazer

How to dress up a hoodie for women over 80
Skirt: NYCC -Macys~~ Jacket: Joan Walter -Hudsons~~ Hoodie: No Boundaries- Goodwill ~~ Boots: KS- Macys ~~ Purse: Rosetti-JCPenny

Maybe you are like my mother, and really don’t like the idea of hoodies. You would never use the hood part on your head so you can’t understand why you should even have the item.

Lucky for me, I found this hoodie for her at Goodwill for $1 and I think the only reason she kept it is because there is an owl on it.
In fact, here it is in all its glory styled this summer with white pants.

But you know what I always say? Just as many people see you from the rear, so why not give them something interesting to look at? And I think a hoodie can be part of that.

Layer, Layer, Layer

If you noticed the owl hoodie by itself, it is sleeveless, so this time my mom layered over it with a white top. It’s not very noticeable under the red jacket, but you would notice it when we went inside and she took off the jacket.

Insider tip: Always remember that you have two choices when layering. OVER and UNDER. Say those two words to yourself every time you put an outfit together and you’ll have more success coming up with unique ways to layer.


Even my mom kept her accessories relatively simple with her outfit to show how to dress up a hoodie. Since there are gold buttons on the jacket, she wore gold button-like earrings. That doesn’t mean you couldn’t wear silver.

Insider tip: It’s very modern to mix metals. Don’t get caught up in thinking that you can only wear one metal at a time. In fact, notice that mom’s boots have silver chains on them.

The advantage of many hoodies is they have ties in the front which can act like an extra. Therefore you don’t usually need a necklace.
But if you don’t want to see the ties, just tuck them into the neck and hide them.

Ruffle skirt and red jacket

How to Dress Up a Hoodie Under an Overall Dress

Add a brooch to an overall dress
Dress: ~~ Hoodie: Southern Soul Collectives ~~ Boots: Embassy London-won in a giveaway ~~ Earrings: from Just Be Youtiful ~~ Purse: from Just Be Youtiful

Some hoodies are thin like t-shirts, but even heavier-weight sweatshirts can be layered over the top if you chose the right piece. You could obviously style this hoodie with overall jeans but since we were working on how to dress up a hoodie, I wore an overall dress.

Insider tip: Don’t forget that your hoodie jackets would work too. Just zip them up, and think of them as a sweatshirt like mine.

Graphic Sweatshirt

This is no ordinary sweatshirt. This is the one that Southern Soul Collectives made for me (and you can buy it too) because I loved the graphic tee, but I needed something warmer. For first-timers, use code Jodie10.

The way I styled this hoodie, you would never know there’s a message on it, so it’s a great way to hide that detail.

Other Details

Even though the idea was how to dress up a hoodie, I thought adding in these combat-like boots would be a great mix. This brand of footwear called Embassy London has the most unique shoes and boots ever. They are like pieces of artwork with their colors and prints.
These are the Brick Lane Boots and happen to be on sale if you’re interested. I just drool over their selection every time I’m on the site.

Insider tip: I also added a “pin” to the front of the overalls. The reason I used quotation marks is that the turquoise flower is really a ring that I pinned with a safety pin. No reason not to make my own brooch that way!

Since the outfit was full of neutrals, I tried to add color with my glasses, jewelry, and shoes.

How to dress up a hoodie with color

Throw It On Over a Dress

How to dress up a hoodie for women over 70
Dress: No label-online~~ Cardigan: ~~ Hoodie: Zersion-thrifted~~ Shoes: Almafi-Macy’s ~~ Scarf: Steinmart ~~ Purse: Steinmart

Confession time. Lesley admitted that she considers hoodies to be casual and are for much younger women. But she found this fabulous color sweatshirt hoodie and came up with a look that she would wear for our idea of how to dress up a hoodie.

You can see there are ways to “style” it that help it from looking overwhelming and overpowering. One, I discuss below, but the other is to cuff the sleeves.

Insider tip: By showcasing the underlayer at the sleeves and cuffing them, you give the outfit more intention. It can look sloppy to have a too-long sleeve especially when the goal is how to dress up a hoodie.

BTW, this is another great trick to style your black dress that is just sitting in the closet and waiting for an event. Layer your sweatshirt hoodie over it and take off on your daily errands.
If it’s winter, throw on your tights and snow boots, and if it’s not as cold, then grab your sneakers.

Scarf as a Belt

Lesley will tell you that she has a non-existent waist yet she still used a scarf as a belt to give the outfit a focal point and an interesting feature. This is the other style trick that I touched on above. Adding touches like the cuffed sleeve and scarf as a belt are ways to make you look fashionable.

Insider tip: Find a lightweight scarf that doesn’t pouf out too much. Lesley just tied the scarf towards the side and it looks fabulous.


Since Lesley added the scarf as her belt, she didn’t go above and beyond with her other accessories. She did wear a silver bracelet and earrings and kept the purse and footwear black.

Turquoise hoodie sweatshirt worn with a dress

Here are some other hoodie options that you might already have in your closet. They don’t have an age on the tag so just because you see them on young models doesn’t mean we can’t wear them.

How to dress up a hoodie for older women
How to dress up a hoodie

Photo credit: Rob Filogomo

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Welcome to Jodie’s Touch of Style. I’m here to prove that it’s never too late to look great. Clothing and style are meant to showcase your inner personality. So let’s have fun and try new things.

It’s not just about me on this blog, but also about my mother and friend. We get to showcase not only different decades of life but also different body shapes and unique personal styles.

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Celebrating our best lives at fifty and beyond! 50ismorefun brings you motivational news and stories centered around life, fitness, fashion, money, travel and health for active folks enjoying the second half of lives.