How to Wear a Midi Skirt

The midi skirt trend isn’t going anywhere fast, but midi skirts aren’t always the easiest items to style. Here are some tips on how to wear a midi skirt – from one who rarely wears anything else!

how to wear a midi skirt

How to Wear a Midi Skirt

Midi skirts have been in fashion for a couple of years now, and there are two basic styles of midi skirt you’re likely to see:  the pencil-style midi skirt/dress and the 50s-inspired full skirts, like the one shown above.

Before we start talking about HOW to wear a midi skirt, it’s probably a good idea to first of all define what a midi skirt actually IS. Many people tend to use the word “midi” to describe any skirt which is knee-length or longer. Actually, though, a TRUE midi skirt should hit around about mid-calf length (hence the name), and this is why it can be a little problematic to style. That mid-calf area, you see, isn’t an area many of us want to emphasize, and by effectively drawing a line across the calf, the midi skirt does exactly that. It can – or so people fear – therefore widen the appearance of the calf, and it can also have a “stumpifying” effect, particularly on those of us who are shorter than average. So, what’s a midi-loving girl to do?

The trick to wearing a midi skirt without looking frumpy, stumpy, or otherwise, is to pay close attention to proportions. The TRUE midi, as I’ve said, hits at mid-calf. Many of today’s retailers, however, make “midi” skirts which a little shorter than that, ending just below the knee. This length is much easier to wear, but creates the same kind of silhouette, and the same basic look, as the true midi. If you can’t find a skirt that length, the tailor (or the sewing machine!) is your best friend: taking up a hem a couple of inches isn’t difficult, and can make a world of difference to how your skirt looks.

what to wear with a midi skirt

A “true” midi skirt should hit around mid-calf: these days, many people use the word “midi” to describe any skirt longer than knee-length

What to wear with a midi skirt

How your wear your midi skirt will depend, to a large extent, on your own personal style. I’ll talk about some specific scenarios later in this post, but in very general terms, if you want to know how to wear a midi skirt, I’d suggest:

♦  Cropped/waist-length tops

The crop-top is also making a bit of a fashion comeback at the moment, and can also seem fairly alarming to those of us who don’t relish the thought of flashing our abs. A top doesn’t have to be super-short to work with a midi skirt, however. Most midi skirts are cut to sit on the natural waist, and they tend to work best with tops which end at the natural waist, too. Longline tops, especially with full midi skirts, can look awkward, and draw the eye down the body, elongating everything. A shorter top, however, will create a more balanced effect, and will also help emphasize the waist, should you want to.

♦  Fitted clothing

If your midi skirt is the pencil/bodycon variety, you may be able to get away with a loose-fitting top, but full skirts generally look better with something more fitted on the top – too much volume can end up looking fussy and unflattering.

♦  Heels

As midi skirts have the effect of shortening the leg, they work best with heels which are high enough to counter that effect. Heels will also help prevent the look from being too frumpy, but if you can’t wear them – or just don’t want to – it doesn’t mean you can’t wear a midi skirt: it just means you may want to go for one which is slightly shorter, instead of a true mid-calf length.

Read on for some more specific advice how to wear a midi skirt. Next up: how to wear a midi skirt in winter…

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