History Behind The Pencil Skirt – A Writing Fashion Statement

Perhaps the most enduring fashion statement throughout the decades is the pencil skirt. This piece of sartorial chic and versatility has been the choice of staid business professionals, divas as well as the girl-next-door.


History Behind The Pencil Skirt

History Behind The Pencil Skirt

In its most basic avatar, the pencil skirt is a tweed or wool wrap -around with a hemline from below the knees to a few inches above. The cut varies from the curve-hugging to a loose style, bringing out the best of the feminine mystique. A slit (optional) can be strategically placed to add that extra allure.

The Evolution of the Fashion Revolution

Hobbling away

1910 saw the advent of the “Hobble Skirt”, the predecessor of the pencil skirt. It was so named because of the severe restriction in movement caused by the bunching of the hemline below the knee.

Taking Off

The Pencil Skirt was  launched in the ’40s by Christian Dior. The ’50s and ’60s saw the likes of Jayne Mansfield, Marilyn Monroe, Katherine Hepburn, among others, set the celluloid screens on fire with their pencils. The “Wiggle Skirt”, a variant, was seen in almost every cabaret of the period.

A Short Pause

The mini-skirt, introduced by Mary Quant in the ’60s, and a take-off of the pencil skirt, like the denim cut-offs of these days, took centre stage in the ’70s.

For Shouting Out Loud

The ’80s and ’90s saw the pencil skirt in bold zebra and leopard prints. Loud metallic prints were also the craze.

You’ve Come A Long Way Baby

The trend continues in the new millennium. Most airlines, corporates, military, and other service industries adopt the pencil skirt uniform to bring in a professional classy look with a touch of the feminine. Celebrities like Rihanna, Beyonce, Kim Kardashian, Cate Blanchet, Kate Bekinsale, and, even Michelle Obama, to name a few, have graced important media dos in grand style in their pencil skirts.

Why Root For The Pencil?

– Almost any material lends itself for an elegant cut. Silk, leather, lace, chiffon and lycra have been used in place of the traditional wool and tweed.

– Any colour can be carried off in style with the correct accessories.

– A pencil can be used to flatter any body type

– The almost endless mix-and-match possibilities of the pencil skirt is only limited by the imagination.

So dress up or dress down with a Pencil and write your own fashion statement!

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