Frock Advisor: our new style column with Sonya Lennon and Brendan Courtney
Starting today, the sartorially savvy duo will help you dress
The ladylike trend of full skirts is good in theory, but I’m terrified by the concept. Will it make my hips look huge ?
At Frockadvisor, we like to contextualise your fashion choices in an embrace of provenance and suitability. In other words, what is it, where did it come from and will it work for you?
Understanding your lifestyle and your body are the keys to avoiding expensive and inexpensive mistakes (it’s only a bargain if you use it, you know). With our help, you can alleviate the sartorial un-dead, tagged and bagged in your wardrobe, unworn, evidence of both delusion and optimism.
To improve the choices we make, take a look to history’s high points, what did they wear that looked great then, and still looks great now?
The big skirts we’re seeing now were born in 1947 with the launch of Christian Dior’s ‘New Look’, a sartorial two-fingers to the austerity of war time. The post-war opulance of volume was as scary then as it is now, and let’s hope just as appropriate. The essence of ‘New Look’ is nipped-in waist and full-volume skirt to the knee or beyond, a silhouette that became synonymous with ladylike elegance, encapsulated by Grace Kelly.
The big statement comes from the sheer amount of fabric used. What you choose to wear on your upper half is a matter of personal taste. Good choices include a snug knit, a shell top, a streamlined shirt or, true to history, an ultra-fitted short jacket.
However, this look is absolutely not about recreating that Dior moment. In fact, you need to work that little bit harder to ensure that you look like a member of contemporary society, rather than an extra from Mad Men.
So, to your question – will my hips be magnified? In a word, no. If you believe your hips, thighs and bum to be your problem area, you probably are, or think you are, a pear shape. This means your upper half is a good size smaller than your bottom half. We know buying dresses is a nightmare and black is a friend for life. So let’s think about what’s happening to the silhouette when wearing a full skirt. The smaller upper half is contoured with exquisite waist definition. The larger lower half can run free and wild, unchained by fabric and protected by the optical illusion that the volume is coming from the skirt itself.