For football fans, little compares to the excitement of a Sunday afternoon crowded around the television or tailgating before the big game. But whether or not you actually care about the sport, figuring out what to wear to a football game can give you an excuse to play and pull together different fall outfits.
Although bleacher seats are far from a runway, style isn't absent in a sports arena. NFL fan or not, there are countless ways to look both cute and casual while watching the game. To prove it, I've brainstormed some outfit ideas below. Now, the next time you're wondering what to wear to a football game, you'll have a solid resource to refer back to.
Your Team’s Gear
This one's a no-brainer. Undoubtedly the easiest outfit you can put together for a football game is wearing your (or even a random) team's jersey. For a classic look, opt for jeans for bottoms and coordinate your footwear to the color scheme you're representing. To dress up the jersey, or even a team sweatshirt, you can either go for an oversized fit and wear it as a dress (tie the sleeves of a denim jacket at the waist to cinch and accentuate your shape, then swap out sneakers for a pair of boots) or tuck your top into a pleated skirt.
A Neutral Uniform
Not all who watch or attend football games are fans of the sport — maybe you're in attendance for the good company or good food. Either way, if you're not rooting for one team or another, there's no need to feign fandom. Wear what you normally would to a fall outing, such as jeans and your favorite cozy sweater.
A V-Neck Varsity Sweater or Cardigan
If Gossip Girl had a football team, the Met steps would have met its match in the school's bleachers. I'm picturing the ladies of Constance Billard decked out in cozy alma mater sweatshirts over a button-down collared shirt, pleated skirts, quilted vests, and designer varsity sweaters — a lot of designer varsity sweaters. Varsity V-neck pullovers and cardigans are as athletically preppy as it gets; they'll dress up your go-to pair of denim for the game, but if you want to elevate the look even further, opt for a skirt with knee-high socks, or experiment with colorful or patterned bottoms.
When figuring out what to wear to a football game, you can't lose with flannel. The autumnal staple is also a popular item for fans of the seasonal sport, so throw one on in lieu of a jacket over a tee, under a vest, or tie at the waist as an accessory.
A Bomber Jacket
Like varsity sweaters, bomber jackets are another clothing item associated with football attire. Rather than style a jersey underneath, bombers look sleeker over casual tees (think monochromatic tops, cropped options, or shirts decorated with clean, team-spirited graphics). And whatever your stance on skinny jeans may be, I personally love pairing a bulkier bomber with leg-hugging bottoms or biker shorts, if weather permits. Keep the look lax with sneakers or add toughness to your aesthetic with a chunky combat boot.
Jackets and hoodies will always have a place in football (and, really, any sporting event) fashion, but don't discount all the other outerwear pieces hanging pretty in your closet. Change things up by wearing a blazer over a sweatshirt for a brisk afternoon game. If it's only slightly breezy, shrug a blanket scarf over your shoulders to avoid unnecessary bulk.
Lots of Layers
Layering up isn't just a styling technique but a means of survival amidst dipping temperatures. This is especially true as we transition into cooler climates (remember: football season spans from September through early February). Luckily, this functional tactic can also be quite fashionable with the right pieces. For example, utilize long-sleeved shirts and thermal pants as your foundation, then build from there: Denim for bottoms, two pairs of socks, and roomy boots (like this pair from Uggs). As for your top half, start with a cozy sweatshirt (team affiliation optional) then add a vest overtop. If you really want to show your team spirit, slip an oversized jersey over the bulk.
If you're sticking with a basic jersey and jeans ensemble, play up your accessories. Colorful jackets, statement gloves, and fun footwear are a given, but don't hesitate to experiment with the trends, i.e. dusting off your favorite 90s-style bag or wristlet for the occasion or incorporating fringe details wherever you can. You can even have fun while being safe with stylish masks.
Over the past year or so, thanks in large to the coronavirus pandemic, loungewear and athleisure have become a kind of uniform for vegging out. While some of us are ready to shed our comfy layers for form-fitting garments and various other going-out outfits, others aren't and that's OK. Football games are long and require a lot of standing up and sitting back down (to cheer or, you know, see what's happening on the field), so opt for something comfy like leggings with a hoodie or joggers and a turtleneck for maximum comfort.
Ditch the Denim
There's no rule that says you have to wear denim to a sporting event. Jeans are optional, as are jerseys. Leather skirts, cigarette pants, even paper bag and loose-fitting trousers are all fair game, so choose your bottom of choice and select your footwear (from sneakers to over-the-knee boots) accordingly.
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