Leather skirts have had a long hiatus, damaged by their 1980's reputations. Often caught in hues of Ferrari red and plastic-chair white whilst hanging out too regularly with big hair, diamante encrusted denim, and listening to Italo-disco. That doesn't sound too bad? That’s because nostalgia works in cycles, and whilst the leather skirt has been back for a short while, maybe even that kind of ‘80s, is far enough ago to be fun again.
Fast cars, synth-pop, high heels and leather skirts
Well, it doesn't have to be that decadent. Even a leather miniskirt, a nightclub favourite, can be toned down a notch, becoming a casual enough option for grocery shopping. Sneakers and leather-anything have become so much the norm, it has hard competition with, gasp, denim! That’s not to say we don’t enjoy it at full power-glamour. What looks better than a perfectly fitting leather pencil skirt, nude pumps and the ever-so-slightly revealing peep of a lace bra with soft cashmere? We rest our case. It doesn't have to be just casual or just sexy either. Who doesn’t want to look like the kind of girl who's doing beginner Ukulele classes? The leather midi skirt worn with this season's loafers is a cool girl’s snappy-smart alternative. The emergence of volume or clever detailing in leather, such as pleats, twists and architectural folds, has opened up the possibilities of wearing a leather skirt to a formal event. The 1970's #throwbacks have been plenty, and not without the re-emergence of the button-up or patchwork A-line leather skirt. It also revived, quite surprisingly, the long leather skirt, known as the leather maxi skirt, a phenomenon we thought we'd never see again, let alone buy. Alas, Pucci's reincarnation in the form of a pink leather skirt tipped us over the edge with a new take on a hippy classic. The suede skirt isn’t exclusively a peace-loving revival party either, and although the Chloé girl always makes a good argument for the latter, a suede pencil skirt can be a down right classic. A navy blue leather skirt or even a burgundy leather skirt in a knee-length pencil shape, can be an office solution that balances the right amount of corporate to cocktail. Our attitudes towards dressing have changed like leather skirts themselves, the biggest difference in fashion today, is that anything goes, full blown hair-metal revival included.
Saint Laurent leather skirt
Have you also noticed this very welcomed change in the avant-garde shape? We certainly have. It’s less the tween hip circumference we are used to ignoring. High fashion has welcomed a curve, accentuated it even, with its choice of cut, the use of skin-tight neoprene, latex and topically, leather. It also has new queens, and they are more likely to start with a ‘K’ than to end in Wintour. Carine Roitfeld has been a long time champion of that certain breed of raw sexiness, the black leather pencil skirt a signature of her Helmut-Newton-muse look. Who knows if it was idol or designer who started the trend? It’s a chicken or the egg predicament, either way, hips are back and designers are creating new waves of expressing sex appeal in ways we couldn't imagine.
The newest label to make us go designer leather skirt crazy, is Anthony Vaccarello. His own thigh-baring, embellished or riveted version of steamy actually acts like a breath of fresh air. It’s the label flanked by a devoted gaggle of girls, muses with names like Anja Rubik and Karlie Kloss. Next up is Hedi Slimane for Saint Laurent, taking a more punk-rock edge on the tight leather skirt, something we suspect has to do with the marriage of California and Rive Gauche. It’s the hero piece fast becoming a Saint Laurent staple. Balenciaga, with their gorgeously refined silhouettes, makes something as simple as a black leather skirt into a sublime game changer. Everybody talks ‘investment buy‘, but a leather skirt by Balenciaga really defines the term. So whether you choose to take the leather skirt as elegantly as say Balenciaga, as sexy as something by Anthony Vaccarello, or as messy haired and hip as Saint Laurent, the leather skirt is home again in the modern women's wardrobe.