Confronting Fashion's "Least Flattering" Hemline

Photographed by Christian Vierig.
There's maxi-length, which goes down all the way to the floor. There's knee-length, which hits at or below your knee, midi-length ends right below your calf, and minis that go as short as you dare. But hemlines that hit right at your ankle? Many people would call that an error. But considering all the recent instances that we've seen it crop up in some really amazing street style photos, we're going to say that calling it a mistake is the real mistake.
While the ankle-length hem recalls the Puritanical practicality of butter-churning gowns or hand-me-down prom dresses that didn't quite fit, it actually makes sense for two main reasons. One, it's the length we're typically looking for in cropped trousers. Two, it has all the drama of a maxi, but still lets you show off your shoes.

Still not quite convinced? See the five outfits ahead to see the ugly-duckling hemline transform an outfit.
Advertisement
1 of 6
Photographed by Christian Vierig.
Here, a long ditzy-print maxi-dress gets belted to ankle-grazing lengths, which helps Anya Ziourova show off those killer boots.
2 of 6
Photographed by Christian Vierig.
Here, a minimal navy blue dress has the ease or a jumpsuit (but without the hassle).
3 of 6
Photographed by Jason Lloyd Evans.
A silk slip in this length can look like a gown, which lets you play around with fun layering and an even more fun shoe.
4 of 6
Photographed by Christian Vierig.
This length also lets you take advantage of one of our favorite timeless shoe trends: the lace-up heel.
5 of 6
Photographed by Melodie Jeng.
See? You wouldn't second-guess this crop in a skinny trouser — and it looks dramatic in a culotte.
6 of 6
Photographed by Christian Vierig.
Advertisement