Today I have an exercise in styling, utilizing the ultimate versatile item for a vintage wardrobe, the black pencil skirt! Though at first a black pencil skirt may seem like a strictly 1950's wardrobe staple, in fact, a basic pencil skirt can be styled for many eras! I styled this one skirt in five different eras, switching only which top, accessories, and hairstyle/cosmetics I paired with it. Lets take a look...
|Skirt: Made by me, Top: H&M, Shoes: Target, Necklace: Made by me, Hair Comb: Vintage|
Starting with a 1920's look, I paired my basic black pencil skirt with a boxy black lace top. The straight 1920's silhouette is maintained by not tucking in the blouse. Pair the look with a long beaded necklace, longer drop earrings, and if you can convince your hair to behave, finger waves! I achieved this style on my long hair by using mervin wave clips (from the 20's/30's and hard to find) and coiling the length back into a bun. Add to the flapper feel by filling in your eyebrows a bit longer at the end and drawing on cupid bow lips.
|Skirt: Made by me, Top: Banana Republic Factor,y Faux Fur: H&M, Hat: Vintage|
|Skirt: Made by me, Top: Made by me, Belt: Vintage, Earrings & Brooch: Vintage, Shoes: Modcloth|
Nothing says 1940's like a strong shoulder, and though this floral blouse of mine doesn't have shoulder pads, the kimono sleeve and stiff cotton do give a bit of structure. Styling a pencil skirt for the 40's is super easy, but to look 40's not just "vintage" add victory rolls! I rolled the front of my hair into victory rolls and the back into a large rolled bun. A fun novelty brooch and strappy basket heels add to the forties feel even more.
|Skirt: Made by me, Top: Banana Republic, Belt: Vintage, Scarf & Jewelry: Vintage, Shoes: Nine West|
For the 1950's look I paired the pencil skirt with a lightweight knit tie-blouse. The aqua, red, and black color scheme feels mid-century diner ready, and with a cherry print chiffon scarf in my hair I felt rather pin-up inspired. Though black fishnets would have been a bit scandalous during the daytime in the fifties, in 2015 they read very "vintage" helping to keep the look from being too modern. A larger waist defining belt helps with the 50's desired hour-glass figure. I rarely wear my hair in a high ponytail like this, but it went with the 50's sock-hop sorta feel!
|Skrit: Made by me, Top: Borrowed from my mom! Jewelry: Vintage, Scarf: Vintage, Shoes: Nine West|
For my last trick, I mean look, I added a bouffant! Nothing says 60's like a bouffant guys, and a general haze of hairspray. I paired the skirt with an off the shoulder knit peasant top, a suite of groovy gold jewelry, and a net nylon scarf. The leopard heels add a bit more personality to a monotone outfit.
As you can see, a black pencil skirt is a seriously useful item in a vintage inspired wardrobe. The styling options are virtually endless! I recommend a longer length, at least to the knee or longer, to maintain the maximum versatility for different eras. You could easily pair a solid color pencil skirt with a classic cardigan and achieve a look from any era by simply changing your hair and make-up. Unlike some vintage ladies, I like to switch up eras, so having items like this longer pencil skirt allows me to switch from flapper one day, to fifties femme fatale the next!