It’s no secret that pencil skirts are a universal staple in any girl’s closet. Even Nina Garcia thinks so, as it was featured of one of her must-have pieces in her book, The One Hundred: A Guide to the Stylish Pieces that Every Stylish Woman Must Own. I know I personally wear one to work at least once a week, because I love the way that pencil skirts hug a woman’s curves and make even the short people like me, have infinitely long leg lines. Because I wear them so often, I can sometimes run into a rut in terms of pairing them with outfits. Thanks to some celebrity inspiration, I have five different ways to infuse new life into my staid normal pencil skirt outfits for rotation Monday through Friday:
1. The Classic Slim Fit with a Button Down Shirt
As Victoria Beckham demonstrates, you can’t go wrong in pairing a classic slim fit, high waisted pencil skirt with a perfectly fit button down shirt. Although this style does work best with a high waisted pencil skirt to better accentuate your waist (even better showcased with a belt), a natural waist or low waist pencil skirt makes this look just as alluring. The combination of a closely fit button down shirt with a snug pencil skirt elongates your body lines and perfectly showcases yoursilhouette in an captivating, yet appropriate Corporate, Citizen Girl way. The key to making this look impeccable is to make sure that the button down that you wear is perfectly tailored and like a second skin, meaning that none of the buttons gape and that the shoulders are perfectly draped. You can do no better in perfectly fit, classic White button downs than Parisian chic designer, Anne Fontaine, who creates hundreds of different designs of these shirts every year, riffing on classics to create contemporary designs, or creating the perfect timeless standard.
2. A Dose of Femininity
To counteract the sometime stuffiness and office look of a pencil skirt, try pairing the skirt with a blousy, feminine blouse to soften up the look as seen here on Rachel Bilson. Leighton Meester, wears her slightly rougher leather pencil skirt here with a simple white ruffled sheath. This contrast offsets the rigidity of her pencil skirt and a silk blouse like J.Crew’s Victoria Ruffle Cami (offered in 5 different colors), adds whimsy and playfulness.
3. A Downtown Look
Pencil skirts don’t need to be worn only for formal occasions. Much like denim, a black pencil skirt transcends both casual and formal, and Alexa Chung, showcases this perfectly with a casual, rock n’ roll look at the London premiere of The Dark Knight. Alexa pairs her skirt here with a simple white t-shirt, a short sleeve blazer, and an interesting pendant for visual interest. The mixture of the casual t-shirt and pendant gives her outfit the perfect downtown cool element that she has practically patented (and no, we don’t mean that as an insult in the way that Olivia Palermo normally derisively says the word “downtown.”) Pair your pencil skirt with the perfect white t-shirt from Alexander Wang’s diffusion line, T. Its slouchy neckline and larger armholes were purposefully designed as the designer said to make the shirt look “slept in.” Pair the shirt with this antique looking Key Locket Initial Necklace.
4. The Boyfriend Look
The sexiest look of the five featured here, this look is a more slouchy, undone version of the button down shirt featured as look number one. Kate Hudson wears her classic skirt with a slightly baggier fit white button down here with artfully undone buttons to showcase her décolletage. With her cuffs rolled back and an artfully, slightly rumpled updo with tendrils, her look blend the ideal mix of casual and sexy. The key to making this look neat (and not too messy) is to keep the hair simple and also to make sure that your pencil skirt is a figure hugging contrast to your slightly less body tailored button down. Robert Rodriguez always comes out with a version of the pencil skirt every season in his signature double knit in the perfect weight, meaning that the skirt hides everything you might be self conscious about hip wise and highlights every curve. While writing this piece, I was inspired to buy this bias cut Robert Rodriguez Double Knit Skirt.
5. The 50’s Bombshell
As a throwback to the 50’s style seen on Mad Men, pair your pencil skirt with a structured jacket. Dita Von Teese, no stranger to bombshell 50’s style, wears her skirt with a classically structured jacket with a nipped in waist. For a professional and body conscious look, try this Dior Torsade Gingham jacket with a twisted band collar, but a slight flared peplum bottom and a waist nipping belt.
Have any more questions? Tweet me @nyckat or @tdailyobsession.