Many of my clients have fallen for the knitted tube skirt over the past few seasons because it’s a good length, flattering, machine washable and extremely comfortable. It’s also a wonderful way to wear a skirt casually as an alternative to jeans, pants and shorts. 

This ensemble was inspired by clients who like to wear their tube skirts with a hard edge. This means keeping the colours very dark, the style integrity a little tough, arty or avant-garde, and the footwear chunky. Textures are usually rich, and hardware can become a feature. The palette is monochromatic, ranging from black and shades of grey to some tan, white and metallic.

A hard-edged vibe can be intentionally “rough around the edges”, or polished. It depends entirely on how the wearer wants to interpret the look.

Here are the components of the ensemble: 

Bottoms: You’re after a knitted tube skirt in black or grey that falls on or just below the knee. Tapered hems are best when the skirt is longer because a narrower fit creates structure. Feel free to throw in a textured knit, or a style with side ruching. 

Tops: You have many options. From oversized arty tops that drape, slouchy T-shirts and linen pullovers, to asymmetrical split hem tops, tank tops and boxy cropped tops. Keep the colours within the palette, possibly throwing in a little dark blue if that tickles your fancy. Photographic patterns and camouflage work particularly well. Think AllSaints. Keep the tops fairly roomy to offset the tightness of the skirt. Wear them a little longer if you’re uncomfortable showcasing your hips and the top part of your thighs. 

Wear the tops untucked or partially tucked in front for a little structure. Remember that boxy tops with high-low hemlines, split hems or tapered hems add structure to the outfit.  

Topper: A topper is not essential. But if you need to cover up, think moto jackets, moto vests, dark denim, waxed denim or utility jackets in camouflage prints. A tuxedo jacket could work quite well too, and so will a short avant-garde jacket with architectural volume and drape. 

Footwear: Think chunky footwear like cut-out booties, Birkenstocks, gladiators with wide straps, flat forms, peep-toe booties, flat oxfords or cage heels. Fashionable sneakers work pretty well too. You can wear more refined footwear with this vibe, like the strappy Sam edelman wedge sandals, if that’s more to your taste. 

Accessories: I vote a clutch with hardware, a black canvas tote or satchel, or a sporty crossbody or fashionable backpack. Add jewellery, eyewear and watch as desired. 

I don’t have a hard edge to my style so this is not an outfit combination that I would wear. When I do wear tough items and dark colours together, there has to also be an element of softness and “pretty” to make me feel comfortable in the outfit. That said, I absolutely appreciate a hard-edged look on others, and enjoy dressing clients who wear this style persona with verve and panache.

Knitted Tube Skirt with a Hard Edge