how to wear a pencil skirt

How to wear a pencil skirt (especially if you’re short)

  • Marie Claire is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn commission on some of the items you choose to buy.
  • Let it not be said that when I love a trend, I don’t try my hardest to make it work for me. Case in point: pencil skirts. For both AW17 and SS18, they flooded the catwalk. They were knitted and featured bold prints at Versace and Prada for winter, while they got a floral and pastel makeover at Gucci and Max Mara for spring.

    But can a skirt that grazes below the knee of willowy models work on a much shorter frame like mine (I’m 5ft3)? In short: yes. The trick is to play around with proportions for the rest of your outfit so it doesn’t look like your heels are cut off. Read on to see what I mean.

    Rule number 1. Don’t wear a long top that’ll swamp you. Instead, take full advantage of the nipped in waist by tucking in a top in it, or rolling it up so it sits just above your hips (see below).

    how to wear a pencil skirt

    Top: Arket, Skirt: Reiss, Shoes: Topshop, Bag: Cos

    Rule number 2. This style really does work better with height, so heels are a must, though it’s a case of showing enough flesh or none at all. For winter, try high boots, and for summer, kitten heels. Anything in between can make even the thinest of legs look stumpy. Sorry.

    Top: Arket, Skirt: Zara, Shoes: Zara, Bag: Topshop

    Rule number 3. It’s ok to cheat. Sometimes if the style is way too long, then I do roll it up every so slightly at the waist, and hide it under an oversized jumper (like the above look at London Fashion Week).

    Rule number 4. Mix it up with the seasons. For winter, go for a leather or knitted skirt: the cosy look is in. For spring, opt for a lighter fabrics, and do dare to experiment with colour, be it a pastel mint (ice cream shades are very much in for SS18) or scarlet red.

    Rule number 5. Don’t be afraid to have fun, remember it’s not illegal to try any trend you want, sartorial rules ARE meant to be broken. Shop my edit of the best pencil skirts out now below.

    how to wear a pencil skirt

    Shop now: OLIVIA STRETCH PANEL LEATHER SKIRT OX BLOOD for £195 from Reiss

    how to wear pencil skirts

    Shop now: LEOPARD-BOOM PRINT SKIRT for £54 from BIMBA Y LOLA

    how to wear pencil skirts

    Shop now: CALF-LENGTH LACE SKIRT WITH STARS for £37.50 from GUESS

    how to wear a pencil skirt

    Shop now: Pencil skirt for £17.99 from H&M

    how to wear a pencil skirt

    Shop now: JOSEPH Zip-detailed ribbed merino wool-blend midi skirt for £265 from Net-A-Porter

    how to wear a pencil skirt

    Shop now: BOTTEGA VENETA Patent-leather pencil skirt for £820 from The Outset

    how to wear a pencil skirt

    Shop now: SATIN SKIRT WITH PRESS FOLDS for £58 from COS

    Reading now

    Popular fashion stories