Let’s give another round of applause for the Internet, and its incredible ocean-bridging capacity to make things even more difficult than they already were, particularly when it comes to communicating. It would seem that an online fashionista looking for the current range of newly trending jumpers in women’s fashion could simply type something like “Jumper” in the search bar, and begin a nice shopping adventure, amid all the new choices and styles of ladies’ jumpers. Not so, as the word “jumper” tends to net (no pun intended,) more info on basketball moves by the pros than anything to be worn. So further specifying with words conveying “garment,” “women’s” and “fashion” oddly produce a connection not made commonly in the U.S.–yet quite the norm in the U.K., where “jumper” is the term used to describe sweaters for both men and women. So, proceeding further, by adding the word “dress,” to search for “jumper dress,” guess what you get? Sweater dresses–and a whole bunch of links to them.

Not Now, Thank You
While we love sweaters, sweater dresses and everything sweater, the spring and summer months are ones where our “jumper” searches must surely be for the cooler-wearing form of U.S. jumpers–the ones that are so comfortable and convenient and were huge in the 70s and 80s. Well, guess what? They’re BACK. In one way, you could almost classify the jumper as the dress form of answer to the pants form of overalls. The jumpers now resurging are the ones that are classically sleeveless and often worn over a blouse or top, in a pinafore fashion. In use as a synonym for “sweater,” “Jumper” is a relatively new thing. (And the original “sweater” was a garment worn with the sole purpose of making the wearer sweat, but that’s another story for another time.) The jumper form of non-sweater dress is described in a 1916 Sears & Roebuck catalog as a jumper frock, detailed as “a pinafore dress worn over a blouse or shirt.” This original term was subsequently shortened to the plainer jumper.

The Often-Implied Duo Jumper
Today in some cases, jumpers in women’s wear can actually refer to clothing sets that are complete, while consisting of separate components. There’s a certain convenience found within this style that is unique and can be toned down or up, depending on other additions, from jackets, shawls and sweaters to the style of shoes, scarves and other accessories. Jumpers are not all dresses, however, and today’s options in pants jumpsuits are winning combinations for all types of occasions. This being said, not all jumpers are in parts, either. Some are solo pieces, and choices of matching  jumpers with a top is up to the wearer. The new jumpers offer a lot of distinction in form, with much artistry found in today’s jumper straps as well as the distinctive types of jumper hardware for fastening and just fashionable embellishing.

The Best Jumpers of 2016
With strappy tops, oversized buttons and boxy looks, trending jumpers are happening in all lengths, with the mid-calf, tea length among the most popular. As always, denim is the most adored fabric of all for the classic jumper. It’s got just enough body to stand, but it’s oh so comfortable and rugged. There still may be some archaic, stone-age rules forbidding denim-wearing at the older, highfalutin’ clubs and associations, but there’s a lot of denim today that amazingly poses, disguised as other fabrics. The classic jumpers are still the traditional blue jean denim, with wonderful pockets and adjustable straps, and whether paired with high-topped Converse sneakers or frilly socks and stilettos, with the right statement-making accessories, as always, jumpers are one of the most versatile and fun forms of dress ever!