Short and sassy, it’s style with an attitude. And after all these years, I’m just now really embracing the ever-popular miniskirt.
You can say my relationship with the fashion icon, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, has been more of a you’re-no-good-for-me-but-I wish-you-were type of thing. Back in the 1960s, when the mini was making a huge fashion statement, I was a reed-thin girl with long birdlike legs and this must-have piece didn’t flatter my frame at all. Yes, I had Twiggy’s lean—OK, skinny-as-a-rail—physique, but somehow I just didn’t do justice to the skirt. Or should I say the skirt didn’t do justice to me.
But you weren’t with it unless you sported some semblance of London designer Mary Quant’s creation, be it a skirt, dress or jumper. They were edgy, controversial and daring. The mini brought the ire of parents and school administrators who had the power to say that a skirt was too short and sent you home to change. Although I wasn’t a big fan of the trend, I wanted to look like my friends and the girls I saw in Seventeen magazine who wore minis with such flair. So I sported my short skirts (minus the go-go boots), but never really felt comfortable in them. I can’t tell you how glad I was to see the ‘70s and maxi dresses come on the scene. Now that was more my style.
Today you’ll hear debates on TV talk shows and read magazine articles about whether it’s appropriate for a 50-something woman to wear a mini.
For this middle-age, fashion moderate, the answer is a resounding yes. What I lacked in confidence as a 15-year-old I’ve gained in abundance as a 55-year-old. That’s when I threw caution to the wind and had the nerve to wear minis with boldness, skinny legs and all. But I know my limits. A fun, flirty sundress on a hot summer day is fine. A booty-hugging number to the office isn’t. To me, that’s just plain commonsense.
So here’s to the miniskirt. May you continue to live long and prosper.