Difference Wiki

Jumper vs. Cardigan: What's the Difference?

Edited by Aimie Carlson || By Janet White || Published on December 12, 2023
Jumper is a pullover garment, typically knitted, covering the upper body. Cardigan is a knitted garment with an open front, often fastened with buttons or a zipper.

Key Differences

Jumpers, also known as pullovers, are typically knitted tops that are put on by pulling over the head. While, cardigans have an open front, which can be buttoned or zipped up.
The jumper is a singular piece without an opening at the front, making it a cozy, slip-on garment. The cardigan is characterized by its front opening, offering more flexibility in terms of styling and temperature regulation.
Jumpers often have a more casual and sporty appearance, suitable for a range of activities. Cardigans can range from casual to formal, depending on their design and the way they are worn.
Jumpers are typically worn as the main top, whereas cardigans are often used as an overlay or addition to an outfit, providing extra warmth and style.
Both jumpers and cardigans come in various materials and styles, but the key difference lies in the jumper's over-the-head style versus the cardigan's open-front design.

Comparison Chart

Front Design

No opening, pulled over the head
Open front, often with buttons or a zipper


Typically casual and sporty
Ranges from casual to formal


Worn as a main top
Used as overlay or addition to outfit

Ease of Wearing

Less flexible, worn over the head
More flexible, can be opened or closed


Less convenient for layering
Convenient for layering

Jumper and Cardigan Definitions


A casual, slip-on upper garment.
She chose a comfy jumper for the long flight.


A knitted garment with an open front.
She buttoned her cardigan in the chilly evening air.


A top garment worn by pulling over the head.
Her striped jumper matched her jeans perfectly.


A garment that can be worn open or closed.
She layered her dress with a lightweight cardigan.


A warm, knitted upper-body clothing piece.
He received a handmade jumper for Christmas.


A versatile, button-up or zipped knitwear.
His woolen cardigan was perfect for the office.


A knitted garment covering the upper body.
She wore a bright red jumper to the party.


A stylish overlay for varying temperatures.
The long cardigan added elegance to her outfit.


A pullover top, often made of wool.
His favorite jumper kept him warm during winter.


A front-opening garment, often with buttons.
Her cashmere cardigan was a gift from her grandmother.


One that jumps.


A knitted garment, such as a sweater or jacket, that opens down the full length of the front.


A type of coasting sled.


A type of sweater or jumper that fastens up the front with buttons or a zipper, usually machine- or hand-knitted from wool.


A warm jacket of knit worsted with or without sleeves, especially a knitted jacket with sleeves that is fastened up the front with buttons or a zipper.


A slightly bow-legged variety of corgi having rounded ears and a long tail.


Knitted jacket that is fastened up the front with buttons or a zipper


Slightly bow-legged variety of corgi having rounded ears and a long tail


What is a cardigan?

A knitted garment with an open front, often with buttons or a zipper.

What is a jumper?

A pullover garment, typically knitted, covering the upper body.

Can jumpers have buttons?

Typically, no. Jumpers are pullover style without front openings.

Are cardigans suitable for formal wear?

Yes, depending on the style and material.

Are jumpers only for winter?

No, they come in various weights suitable for different seasons.

Can cardigans have zippers?

Yes, some cardigans have zippers instead of buttons.

Can cardigans be part of a uniform?

Yes, in many schools and workplaces.

Are all cardigans knitted?

Mostly, but they can also be made of other fabrics.

Can cardigans be worn as tops?

Yes, especially if they are designed to be buttoned up.

Do jumpers come in different materials?

Yes, including wool, cotton, and synthetic blends.

Is a jumper considered casual wear?

Generally, yes, though some can be more formal.

Can a jumper have a hood?

Yes, some jumpers come with hoods.

Do jumpers always have long sleeves?

Not always, there are sleeveless and short-sleeved versions.

Do cardigans come in different lengths?

Yes, from cropped to waist-length to long.

Can a cardigan be sleeveless?

Yes, there are sleeveless cardigan styles.

Do jumpers shrink in the wash?

They can, especially if woolen and not washed properly.

Is a sweater the same as a jumper?

In many contexts, yes, especially in American English.

Are cardigans good for layering?

Yes, they are excellent for layering.

Are jumpers suitable for all ages?

Absolutely, they are versatile for all ages.

Is a cardigan a good gift?

Yes, it's a versatile and thoughtful choice.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.

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