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Sweater Clips

Updated on October 8, 2014

Sweater Clips | Sweater Guards | Cardigan Guards

If you love to drape your sweater or cardigan over your shoulders instead of wearing it, you probably love sweater clips. Sweater clips, also known called these names:

~ cardigan clips

~ sweater guards

~ sweater clips

Whatever you call them, sweater clips are jewelry for your sweater!

Sweater guards have two clip-style decorative pieces on either end connected by chain or a length of beads that you can clip to your sweater to hold it over your shoulders. Think librarians! But anyone can wear sweater clips though. Jazz up your office attire today!

The vintage sweater clip shown here features a butterfly charm with decorative beads and chain links.

Photo Credit: Peggy Hazelwood

Vintage Sweater Clips - Click a small image to enlarge it.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Vintage sweater clip with decorative gold tone, round design clips.  All photos by Peggy Hazelwood.Decorative round ends clip to a sweater.Close up of decorative butterfly charm on cardigan guard.Sweater guard with three strands:  chain and pearls.Sweater clip in gold with decorative alligator clips.Cloth sweater clip with gold tone alligator clips.
Vintage sweater clip with decorative gold tone, round design clips.  All photos by Peggy Hazelwood.
Vintage sweater clip with decorative gold tone, round design clips. All photos by Peggy Hazelwood. | Source
Decorative round ends clip to a sweater.
Decorative round ends clip to a sweater.
Close up of decorative butterfly charm on cardigan guard.
Close up of decorative butterfly charm on cardigan guard.
Sweater guard with three strands:  chain and pearls.
Sweater guard with three strands: chain and pearls.
Sweater clip in gold with decorative alligator clips.
Sweater clip in gold with decorative alligator clips.
Cloth sweater clip with gold tone alligator clips.
Cloth sweater clip with gold tone alligator clips.
Cardigan guard, sweater clip, whatever you want to call it!
Cardigan guard, sweater clip, whatever you want to call it! | Source

The History of Sweater Clips

Sweater clips have been around for decades. Women wear sweater clips on cardigan sweaters, which are sweaters that open down the front with buttons running down the front.

When women drape a sweater over their shoulders, they can attach a sweater clip to either side of the sweater near the top to hold the sweater in place without having to "wear" the sweater in the traditional way.

You might associate sweater clips with prim and proper ladies, like librarians who use sweater clips to keep their sweater on their shoulders in a chilly library. But they're also great for the office, around the house, or to keep your sweater at hand any time.

Sweater clips are also called cardigan clips, sweater guards, sweater necklaces, or cardigan guards. The parts that attach to the sweater usually are an alligator clip design (they open similar to a spring-loaded clothespin). This portion can be plain or decorative.

As with all things retro, sweater clips are new again. It's possible to buy vintage sweater clips or new ones. You can even make your own.

Photo Credit: Peggy Hazelwood

Sweater Clips Sweater Guards - Find just the right accent piece for your sweater!

These one of a kind sweater guards vary and there's something here for all tastes (and all sweaters!).

Sweater Clips of Your Very Own

A nice sweater clip is a nod to the past. This jewelry for your sweater is timeless on a cardigan sweater or even a light jacket.

Do you love sweater clips?

See results

Sweaters To Go with Your Cardigan Guard

Calvin Klein Jeans Women's Cropped Cardigan Sweater, Charcoal Heather, Large
Calvin Klein Jeans Women's Cropped Cardigan Sweater, Charcoal Heather, Large

A basic neutral sweater is a great addition to a wardrobe. You can wear it with everything and dress it up with a sweater clip.


Cardigan Sweater Patterns ~ Make Your Own Cardigan To Go with Your Sweater Clip

Don't have a cardigan to go with your sweater clip? Fear not! Make a sweater and you'll be safe from chills.

How to Make Sweater Clips - Make your own sweater clip

These fun blogs and Web sites provide instructions on making your own sweater clips. These creative women use vintage earrings (clip and screw on styles), findings, ribbon, toys, watch faces, and more to make sweater clips!

Affiliate Disclosure

This author, Peggy Hazelwood, participates in Amazon, eBay, All Posters, and other affiliate advertising programs. When you click an advertising link on this page and make a purchase, I receive a small percent of the sale. Thank you for reading this far!

Please share your thoughts on sweater clips. - Do you think they're just for librarians?

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    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I use to wear them back when poodle skirts and oxfords were popular. I didn't even know they were still around. I predict there will be a surge of this trend. Thank you for this lens.

    • Pam Irie profile image

      Pam Irie 

      5 years ago from Land of Aloha

      I once had a vintage set of mustard seed sweater clips. They were a favorite of mine. :)

    • writerkath profile image


      5 years ago

      These are beautiful! One of our "honorary daughters" loves and wears these, so any time I find one at a yard sale, I get it for her. Now you've got me thinking about getting a couple for myself. What a unique fashion statement!

    • lesliesinclair profile image


      5 years ago

      Sweater clips were very popular when I was young, but I haven't seen them for years. They were very handy and will no doubt be popular again since sweaters are now in fashion.

    • ismeedee profile image


      5 years ago

      Very useful, love the list of ideas for making your own!

    • Gypzeerose profile image

      Rose Jones 

      5 years ago

      What a cool lens. Leave it to you to make such an entertaining and informative article about sweater clips. Pinned to my fashion board and blessed.

    • JeffGilbert profile image


      5 years ago

      I haven't seen these in a long time, and it's great how you explained their history and amassed a good collection on the page. Great lens!

    • darciefrench lm profile image

      darciefrench lm 

      5 years ago

      My Nana used to wear sweater clips, thanks for the lovely memories

    • kabbalah lm profile image

      kabbalah lm 

      5 years ago

      My wife liked these. I've never heard of sweater clips before. I guess I need to get out more often :)

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      I have childhood memories of my first swearer clip too, there were stars in my eyes when I wore it and I just knew everyone would think it was beautiful. They are jewelry and I'm glad to see they are still here for all to enjoy....not just for librarians!

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 

      5 years ago from Arkansas USA

      My dad brought me a sweater guard many, many years ago when I was just a child. I had it all these years until our house fire. Thanks for bringing back that lovely memory - I still own it in my heart. :)

    • Ibexing profile image


      5 years ago

      What a brilliant idea I had never heard of sweater clips until I read this lens.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Love the pictures of the lovely sweater clips! Don't recall seeing any for a long, long time! Very cool lens!

    • Jan 1980 profile image

      Jan 1980 

      6 years ago

      This lens is great described,i like it.I am big fan of sweater clips but this is very nice.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Haven't thought about or used these since I was a kid!

    • MBradley McCauley profile image

      MBradley McCauley 

      6 years ago

      Like sweater clips and like the lens. Thanks for sharing.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      cardigan sweaters

      nice post I really like it.

    • Joan Haines profile image

      Joan Haines 

      6 years ago

      A must for scarves and ponchos and such as well!

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I love it!!! Great lens. I must get me some of these.

    • Susan300 profile image


      6 years ago

      Excellent examples. So pretty and functional! :)

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      What very attractive sweater clips! Thanks for sharing!

    • gottaloveit2 profile image


      6 years ago

      Especially with the crochet wraps coming back in style, a sweater clip would be a great idea. I've never heard of one before but will be on the lookout for it now.

    • Pam Irie profile image

      Pam Irie 

      7 years ago from Land of Aloha

      I think sweater clips are very cool. I gave my niece a set of mustard seed vintage sweater clips. She adores them.

    • CruiseReady profile image


      7 years ago from East Central Florida

      Sweater clips were quite popular when I was in school, not just for librarians then! I hadn't thought about them in years until now...

    • Scarlettohairy profile imageAUTHOR

      Peggy Hazelwood 

      7 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

      @Virginia Allain: That's okay, Virginia! You broke the stereotype!

    • lasertek lm profile image

      lasertek lm 

      7 years ago

      Of course not. The sweater clips on this lens are really lovely.

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 

      7 years ago from Central Florida

      I'm a librarian and never had any sweater clips. Guess I missed out...

    • Diane Cass profile image

      Diane Cass 

      7 years ago from New York

      I love vintage costume jewelry. I have a lovely Sarah Coventry sweater clip with pearls. It is so pretty. My favorites are the ones with sparkly rhinestones. Love the lens.

    • jptanabe profile image

      Jennifer P Tanabe 

      7 years ago from Red Hook, NY

      Hmm, sweater clips do sound a bit librarianish, but these ones look really cool! I want one!

    • Ann Hinds profile image

      Ann Hinds 

      7 years ago from So Cal

      My mother was a librarian and did not wear sweater clips but I still have a few left over from my 50's childhood. Haven't thought about them in years, guess I should dig them out. Great lens.

    • Nancy Hardin profile image

      Nancy Carol Brown Hardin 

      7 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      Oh no, not just for Librarians, "although there's nothing wrong with that!" sweater guards perform a very useful function...and "everything old is new again," so young people will be wearing these (and probably are already.) Great lens, good information on the subject. Thanks for sharing!

    • ClassyGals profile image

      Cynthia Davis 

      7 years ago from Pittsburgh

      I love vintage sweater clips!

      Blessed by a Squid Angel**


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