A cardigan or a sweater is a complete garment to cover your upper body and keep it warm in the cold season. It can be worn with sweatpants or a long skirt to get a trendy look. On the other hand, a shawl is one flat piece of fabric, weave or knit, worn around the shoulders to augment, either in decoration or protection from cold weather.
A shawl can give a traditional look. Females who wear traditional dresses like salwar-kameez, long Kurti, and saree can put on a shawl to cover their arms and shoulder for protection from cold. It helps to maintain the traditional look in the winter too. Sometimes many females prefer to wear a denim jacket or a cardigan over a Kurti, which also looks trendy.
Shawl is easy to wear, and you can cover your body both casually and formally. Like, when wearing a saree, you can put the shawl on the right side of your shoulder to look trendy in traditional outfits. Shawl is easy to take off also; whenever you feel warm, you can put the shawl on one side so that you are not getting much heat.
Indian Kashmiri Pashmina shawls are the tradition of Bengali and Indian women. These shawls come with embroidered work overall the shawl and sometimes only at the border; they can be carried with party kameez and saree for any function or formal gathering. You can choose according to your preference.
Sweaters are heavier than shawls; their mechanism is also different, as a cardigan or sweater comes with a full-sleeve t-shirt. Sweaters are good for any informal or casual outings like if you are wearing a polo t-shirt and a sweatpant, put on a light to a heavy sweater, and you are good to go outdoors. Sweaters are available in many patterns and designs. Oversized sweaters can be worn with any formal pants to get a look for any hangout or everyday outing. Crop sweaters or denim jackets are good with high-waist pants or skirts.
Coats or blazers are for a formal outing in the winter season. If you are a working person, you can create a classy look with a formal shirt, a fashionable blazer, and loose pants. Remember that this season is for loafers, oxford shoes, sneakers, and boots. Find which is comfortable for you and pair it according to your attire.
Finally, you can sport a shawl or sweater for different occasions. Try both with different outfits, so you are not bored with just one pattern. Thus creating different outfit pairs depends on your comfort zone and the trend. Once you find which fits or suits you more, try choosing different designs and colours to create variations in your look.