The Midcalf Skirt

This hemline may be daunting, but pairing it with the right blouse and shoes lets you work the trend like a pro.

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The Midcalf

Known as: The “new” length.


Why we love it: Finally, a little coverage.


Best paired with: A structured bag.


Designers who do it best: Nanette Lepore, Isaac Mizrahi, Jill Stuart.

Courtesy of

Expert Tips from Designer Lela Rose

Who wears it best?

LR: I love a long and lean pencil skirt for an hourglass figure, but it flatters most women because it draws an elongated line.


Favorite fabrics?

LR: A wool tweed would be perfect. I’d avoid any fabric that’s too loose or drapey.


Preferred work look?

LR: Wear it with a cardigan and fun accessories.


How about weekends?

LR: I would dress it down by wearing it with a crisp cotton shirt, and lose the high heels.


Accessories you’d recommend?

LR: I like rich, textural necklaces that have a lot of different elements in them.

Courtesy of Lela Rose

Patron Saint of This Length: Grace Kelly

Call her Kate Middleton, the prequel: The world’s fascination with Grace Kelly had as much to do with her chic style as it did with her royal title (Hollywood stardom didn’t hurt either). With her bouclé suits, kid gloves and such a love of ladylike bags that Hermès named a style in her honor, she’s an icon for the ages.

Courtesy of Getty Images

Four Tricks to Keeping It Modern

1. Look for skirts in menswear fabrics (a big fall trend).


2. Keep the silhouette sleek (new), not poufy (old).


3. Wear with edgy shoes (for an unexpected twist).


4. Choose styles with a high waist (sexier).

Courtesy of

Perfect Pairings

1. Form-fitting knits, feminine blouses.


2. Shrunken blazers.


3. Crisp, white button-down shirts.


4. Overcoat (its hem should hit above the skirt’s hem).

Courtesy of First View

Shoe Styles That Work

1. Tall, sleek leather boots.


2. Round-toe pumps with stacked heels.


3. Open-toe pumps.


4. Wedges (at left, Giuseppe Zanotti suede wedges, $700; 212-650-0455).



Just say no to: booties, strappy sandals, midcalf boots and flats (unless you're 5'6" or taller).

Courtesy of Guiseppe Zanotti

Excuses, Excuses

“It’s not really a shorter skirt. I just have longer legs.”

—Anna Kournikova


If you're ready to hike up that hem, check out our tips and tricks to work the knee-length skirt.


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First Published October 27, 2011

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