How To Rock A Pencil Skirt Out Of The Office

If the idea of a "pencil skirt" conjures up as much inspiration as "day-old noodles," you're not alone. In the realm of clothing items, the lowly pencil skirt has been relegated to the back of the line, only making appearances in fluorescent-lit office spaces, recruiting conventions, and other "business casual" functions. No more, we say. When worn right, the pencil skirt can be one of the sexiest pieces around (two words: Joan Holloway), and a truly versatile piece that can make casual outfits more fancy, and fancy outfits more imaginative. Here are seven ways to make a pencil skirt feel anything other than your office dress code jacket.
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Under With A Belt — To try out colorblocking in a way, pair a bright skirt under a neutral-toned sweater, and keep everything in place with a belt in a different bright hue. It's a way to define your waist without getting too color-happy.

DVF Koto Skirt, $198, available at DVF.
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With A Cropped Sweater — Take advantage of the long line of the skirt, and choose a cropped sweater to pair with it. For this look, go for a pencil skirt in trendier fabrics like this Opening Ceremony one in neoprene.

Opening Ceremony Seamed Pencil Skirt, $63, available at Opening Ceremony.
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With A Knotted Shirt — For a cheeky way to recreate the blouse-and-pencil-skirt silhouette, knot a short-sleeved shirt at the smallest part of your waist.

ASOS Pencil Skirt in '90s Print, $35.81, available at ASOS.
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Dig Into Denim — It's time to trade in your faded and frayed mini for a high-waisted denim pencil skirt. We like this J.Crew one in a dark wash, paired with a patterned top, a longer jacket, and a mean pair of heels.

J.Crew High-Waisted Denim Pencil Skirt, $98, available at J.Crew .
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Paired With A Beat-Up T-Shirt — We love the juxtoposition of a serious we-mean-business skirt and a ready-for-the-weekend top. A soft-as-silk vintage T-shirt and a fitted, black pencil skirt are a winning combination.

Givenchy Pencil Skirt , $389, available at My Theresa.
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For A Glitzy (But Casual) Evening Out — For those evening events where the dress code is somewhere between a cocktail dress and a pair of jeans, opt for a shimmery pencil skirt and a neutral-colored oversized shirt to keep the disco-ball factor dialed down.

DVF Tube Skirt, $275, available at DVF
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Layered Up — Layer a few thin colored shirts and sweaters on top of a solid pencil skirt to bring attention to your waist. Wearing your outer-most shells in the same color helps make those layered strips really pop!

DAY Birger et Mikkelsen Leather Pencil Skirt, $350, available at Net-a-Porter.
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Peeking Out From Beneath A Hem — If you're dressing for a day spent outside, don't worry about unbuttoning your trench and letting the draft in. The longer-hem of a pencil skirt is the perfect touch for balancing out a more voluminous jacket.

Just Cavalli Canvas Trench Coat, $735, available at Shopbop.

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