I’ve never been much of a skirt girl. Even in summer, I’ve always felt more at home in a loose pair of culottes or a denim playsuit, leaving all of the cute girl skirt vibes to babes like Sophie who look more at home bearing their pins than I do in just having them (my balance leaves a lot to be desired, let’s just say that).
It’s not that I don’t like skirts - they’re cute and airy and flirty in an uncomplicated way - I’ve just never felt very at home in them. I guess there’s always been a practical element involved; knowing that I prefer to sit cross-legged and that, often, I trip over the recurring discovery of my own feet, having a strip of fabric to protect my pretty bits has always seemed like the most logical option. It’s possible that this protective instinct has come from one too many a drunken stumble courtesy of late teenage moi, the likes of which always resulted in a flash that bordered on autobiographical. Despite the motivations, however, I’ve just slipped into the role of a trousers wearer. Cropped, wide leg, jeans or jumpsuit - no matter the style, as long as my bits and bobs are covered and there’s no risk of chub rub, I’m happy (if a little hot).
As summer started to bubble up from beneath the all-too-familiar British rainclouds, however, I found myself a little bored. Jeans are great and all, but the styling options for a nice top and denim duo are pretty limited, and when a large part of your job is taking pictures of whatever you’ve thrown on that morning, you tend to want to inject a little variety where you can. So I decided: once I was back from my bougie summer holiday, I was going to embrace the leggage and invest in a couple of skirts. Well, a denim one at least (you can take the girl out of denim, but you can’t take denim out of the girl, right?).
Top - Glamorous
Skirt - Glamorous
Boots - Topshop
Bag - J.W. Anderson
Another reason I’ve found myself avoiding skirts over the years is the fit. Being as petite as I am (4’11, if you’ve somehow missed me banging on about my height all these years), skirts tend to a) be too wide on my waist and much, much too flattening on my arse, and b) bunch up awkwardly around my stomach, making me look like a backwards turtle. Cue that uncomfortable moment when you catch your reflection in the passing of a shop window, and wonder why you insist on wearing clothes that patently do not fit (basically my life story).
I’ve just found skirts exceptionally difficult to get right, and even in those instances where I found a shape that sat around me perfectly, I’ve always felt that in being short, I was crossing the border into schoolgirl territories (and not in the weird sexy way, either - in the ‘I’ve escaped a school trip and my guardian will turn up, panicked and panting any minute’ kind of way).
This year, however, I was determined to turn the tables. You see, 2018 has been a solid compilation of increasingly sexy months for me. I feel like I’ve kind of found myself again - not in the sense that I’ve realised I love extra mature cheddar cheese instead of mild, because a girl always knows in her heart of hearts what her true cheese preference is and mine is MILD AF - but in the sense that I just feel sorta sexy again.
This fresh, full moment of feeling sexy again and not harbouring an ounce of shame seems to have manifested in a lot of skirt wearing. I try and avoid the word feminine as much as possible, but for lack of a better replacement, my outfits appear to have moved in a decidedly ‘feminine’ direction (please excuse the stereotyping). I’m embracing flirty hemlines and cute strappy sandals and boobs boobs B00BS everywhere. I’m wearing pink blusher and balmy lipsticks and I’ve incorporated two new hairstyles into my extremely limited repertoire, taking the weight off the trusty 3-day-old greasy low bun. Okay, I’m still partial to some blue denim and white trainers whenever I’m feeling less than motivated come the 6am alarm, but even then I’m allowing myself to feel cute. To be nice to myself, just because.
Over the past few weeks, my skirt collection has bloomed from a measly moth-eaten duo to a healthy assortment of various colours, fabrics and lengths. Maybe it’s frivolous, and maybe, in the grand scheme of things, the fact that I’ve fallen back in love with an item of everyday clothing hardly makes for groundbreaking reading, but do you know what? I think it says a lot about the status of my relationship with myself, and I’m here for that.
Long live the summer of the skirt.
You know when you’re 18, and somebody mentions something about making the most of your youth and how time passes...