How to say it: leth-er skurt
- made from leather
- can be any shape or style
…of the style: Humans have been using leather to make clothing for thousands of years – there is archaeological evidence dating back to 1200 BC, but it is thought that leather garments existed long before that.
In terms of modern fashions, the leather skirt seems to have made its entrance in the 1970s and is particularly associated with the Punk subculture. The leather mini skirt is particularly iconic of this period, it was black, short and tight, and is often associated with designers like Vivienne Westwood, and female rock stars of the era, like Debbie Harry.
The Punk look continued into the 1980s, before evolving into the Gothic look whose stylings were inspired by the Victorians and Elizabethans, and by the 1990s the leather skirt had found its way to the catwalks, with many designers drawing on these subcultures for inspiration. The leather fell out of favour in the early 2000s but came back with a vengeance in 2011 and 2013, gracing the catwalks in feminine shapes that were far from the short, tight, safety-pinned version of the 70s. Modern leather skirts come in all colours and are often soft and light, featuring pleats, panels and flounces that mirror skirt styles made from other fabrics. The technique of laser-cutting has also been applied to leather, allowing designers to produce lace-like leather garments and adding yet another level of embellishment to leather garments.
In the 21st century leather skirts have become a fashion classic; the style remains popular in the marketplace, particularly in Fall collections. And with advances in faux leather and vegan leather making leather (or leather-like) garments more accessible in mainstream fashion, the leather skirt is likely to keep evolving.
…of the name: The skirt is made from leather, so it is a leather skirt.
21st Century Leather Skirts
The leather skirt has come a long way from the black mini, and in the 21st century designers are able to manipulate leather to make it do and look however they want. But given the high price point of leather skirts, the classic option is often the best to get longevity out of a garment.
Burberry London, Jason Wu
Moschino Cheap and Chic, Tory Burch