Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Ruthlessly cutting off 4 inches of python...

Something had been bothering me about this python skirt (first posted here) and I finally realised what it was.  The length.  It just wasn't me.  I think skirts suit me best when they are either quite long, like mid-calf to ankle length, or above knee.  Just below the knee or sitting just at the knee is not a good look for me.
It's a peculiar thing how a skirt length can suit some women so well, and just look frumpy and awful on others.  One's OK hem length is a personal thing.  It's taken me a while to work this out, and I'm realising it's no good fighting this innate truth.  Once you have determined your OK Hem Length (let's call this your OKHL), then it's a good idea to stick to it.  Yes, hem lengths are dictated to us by current fashion trends, but every once in a while you just can't wear it, no matter how fashionable it is.  It may be the OKHL for some fashion mavens but not for you.  Luckily the hem lengths of today's fashion change faster than anyone can keep up with so any one of them will still be in keeping with a current trend from some design quarter...
Determining her own OKHL is every woman's quest in her sartorial life.  It takes time and persistence and, yes, mistakes to get this right.  We've all had this experience.  You come across it in a boutique, the most fabulous skirt you've ever seen, has you racing into the changeroom with inner whoops of joy, already mentally buying it and the trying on a mere formality to see for yourself in the mirror how utterly gorgeous you are going to be in your new skirt... then it's on, you look in the mirror, whoomp.  All your excitement evaporates at the hideous reflection of yourself in that skirt in the mirror.  It's all ...wrong.  You feel like it's you.  The skirt is perfect, but its you who are not.
Well, my friend, at least half the time it won't be you that is the problem, but the hemline of your fabulous skirt.  It's just not your OKHL.  
It's no coincidence that a lot of the "re-fashions" I see on Wardrobe Re-fashion are simply either the shortening of a too-long dress/skirt or adding-on of strips of fabric to lengthen a too-short number.  OKHL's are being realised here.
I feel a lot better about this skirt now.  What do you think?  
Have you determined your OKHL?  What were your experiences in working it out?

Skirt; my own design variations on Vogue 7303, python print satin
Top; Metalicus
Shirt; from Tinga Safari Lodge, borrowed from my husbands wardrobe
Belt; from my cargos
Boots; Mina Martini, from Marie Claire


  1. I have yet to figure out my OKHL. I need to take a lot of pictures and look at them together. One deal with me is my church's standard of modesty indicates wearing hems at the knee or lower, so I need to work with that.

    I think just covering my knee is a flattering length for me, but I'm not sure. I do know I feel comfortable in it.

  2. That's a good length for you.

    For me, I think really long and just above the knee to mid-knee are nice lengths. I don't feel comfortable with anything too short. Not so sure it's flattering on me.

  3. Yes, I think the skirt length looks good like that. I think Craig will need a padlock on his part of the wardrobe.

  4. this is a good length for you. I love the whole 'Jane of the Jungle' look that you have here.

  5. I agree - that skirt is the perfect length on you!

    P.S. What a sweet pup!

  6. Your cool skirt just got cooler! Love the new, sassy length. And it's delicious paired with your safari jacket.

    I struggle with hemlines, too. Last year, my skirts were all hemmed below the knee (to cover my scarred up knees). This year, everything's just slightly above the knee, which looks better proportionally. (or maybe I just don't care about my scarred up knees anymore?)

    Next year, I'll probably go longer… who knows? That's the great thing about sewing – you've got options! And you can ALWAYS change your mind. :)

  7. My OKHL is mini or above the knee, but i'm drawn to midcalf length so i'm going to experiment with different styles and see what they look like xx

  8. I like the skirt like this. Amazing how a few inches can make something look completely different.

    I've been thinking about my OKHL with my recent skirts - from 2 inches above the knee to just below seems to be good for me .. or quite long. Then there is the issue of tights, which makes it a bit different, no? or even tall boots ... so I think sometimes it has to work with the whole outfit. I think it can also depend on the width or style - what is the best hem length. Probably some sort of algorithm could be developed for this ... :)

  9. You are so right, when the hem length is not OK it definitely makes the garment look "off". Both your lengths give the outfits a different look but I do like them both :)

    Hard to believe this is your winter and the grass is still so green.

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