Maxi Skirt


How to say it:  mak-see skurt

Traditional Features: 

Maxi Skirt


  • hem finishes between the ankle and the ground
  • can be any style, but traditionally are fitted over the hips and falls straight to the ground


…of the style: Women have been wearing skirts since at least the 16th century, and until the 1920s, they were all full length – technically maxi skirts. However it wasn’t until the 1970s that the maxi skirt as we know it today became part of mainstream fashion.

Apparently, one of the first instances of the maxi skirt was in 1968 in the Elizabeth Arden Salon collection created by Oscar de la Renta. The full length lace skirt was reportedly in reaction against the miniskirts of the 60s. Other high-end designers soon followed suit and the maxi skirt became a trend. The maxi skirt of the 70s was different to the long skirts prior to 1900 – they weren’t huge and layered like hoop skirts, or tight and narrow like the hobble skirt, the maxi was fitted but flowy, harnessing the free-spirited ethos of the Hippie Culture and allowing women to look pretty and feminine without having to show a lot of leg.

The power dressing miniskirts of the 80s killed the maxi skirt and it didn’t resurface until the mid 90s when the Boho trend brought it back into fashion. Since then the maxi skirt has returned to the catwalk year after year in various styles and has become a perennial favourite amongst women of all ages.

…of the name: I couldn’t find any recorded reason as to why it is called the maxi – maybe it has something to do with the fact that the skirt is the maximum length.

For more info on Maxi Skirts try The Independent, Ellen Duffer, The New York Times or check out the Fairchild’s Dictionary of Fashion

Random Facts

  • when the maxi skirt came into fashion in the 1970s, it was the longest skirts had been since 1914.

21st Century Maxi Skirts

Nowadays, the maxi skirt varies in from ankle-length to dragging-along-the-floor length with styles ranging from the  soft, floaty bohemian look to the chic, fitted, narrow styles that are clearly influenced by Poiret’s hobble skirt.



Three Dots Valentino

Three Dots, Valentino

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