Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Pencilmania : why the pencil skirt is forever chic.

If I was told that I could keep just three bottom wear items in my wardrobe; guess what they would be? They would be- my favorite pair of straight-fit classic blue jeans, my well fitting black trousers and my well-fitting black pencil skirt. That’s how indispensable I think pencil skirts are.

Descended from the venerable “hobble skirt” that was designed by the legendary French designer Poiret in 1910s, the pencil skirts have become a staple in every office going woman’s wardrobe for their simple stylishness and ability to go from season to season without ever looking out of place. Of late women seem to have rediscovered how amazingly versatile this garment and they are everywhere.

Having said that, there is absolutely no need to stick to the black skirted secretarial look, in fact pencil skirts look great in just about every color and length; even printed versions can be refreshingly pretty. The trends keep fluctuating and right now, both short and below knee hemlines are in, though the mid-calf length does not flatter most people.

But it’s not about the skirt; it’s about you, so make sure you choose a shape and length suitable for your body type, get a few good quality skirts in a few solid neutrals and watch your wardrobe anxiety vanish. Mid to high waisted styles, with hemlines that hit the middle of your knee, or a couple of inches above, would suit almost everyone and never go out of style.

Once you identify the shape and length that works best for you, stick to those, where you can experiment safely is – fabrics, colors and styles. Think dull metallic brocades and
Jacquards or soft clingy jersey with a little draping detail, if that’s not your style you could consider crisp khakis or nautical looks with a large pockets or a double row of brass buttons and so on.
I personally love the taffeta silk skirts in jewel tones, with a few well placed pleats or the large tie-on bows at the waist - fabulous.

Apart from the office look, there are endless casual looks you can create by pairing the skirts with tops ranging from simple sleeveless vests, long sleeved T-shirts & lacy blouses to cardigans.
For the evenings opt for rich jewel colors and luxurious fabrics, add dark tights and sky high heels. You could throw on a plain satin boyfriend jacket or a sequined blazer for added glamour.

Equally open is the option of footwear, pencil skirts look best when paired with slim heels but I have seen amazing looks where they have been styled with shoes ranging from gladiators, derby shoes, ballerina flats to clogs and uggs. Belts work really well with these skirts  as  do most kinds of bags from over-sized to evening clutches.
Look here for some tips on choosing and wearing it right-

1 comment:

  1. Hola:

    One always thought there were only two types of skirts: those that were tight and terminated above the knee and those there were not tight and didn't terminate above the knee. One now stands corrected.

    Nice article. Educational and well written, as always. As we say in Amchi Mumbai, you have 'ishtyle'.

    BTW: How come you never write about Indian fashions? Do you not consider the 9-yard silk saree a 'classic', for example? I was at a wedding recently, and almost every maami there looked pretty chic to me. Almost made me rue my single status (almost, but not quite).

    Suggest you cogitate on this suggestion.




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