Trend Apr 7, 2011 3 min read

The cult of the pleated skirt

It is all about plissé at the moment. Seriously, when was the last time a brand was forced to set an email address dedicated to a skirt? But with all the hype, what is the real ana...

It is all about plissé at the moment. Seriously, when was the last time a brand was forced to set an email address dedicated to a skirt? But with all the hype, what is the real analysis behind the trend?

First spotted on the SS11 runways, the concertina style marked a change from the thicker more boxy pleats of AW10/11. Jill Stuart, Derek Lam and Chloé all featured versions of the style in a range of hues from crisp white to dusty lemon and taupe, opting for just above, or just below the knee lengths. House of Holland took a more quirky approach, creating the style in powder blue denim (pictured above).

Before the collections hit stores, the look was spotted on aficionados from New York to London and was a key trend for AW11/12 attendees. Maxi’s were the favored length to brave the chilly weather, and the style was echoed on the runway at a number of shows including Nicole Farhi and Son Jung Wan.

High street retailers were quick to capitalize on the action with Topshop and ASOS both bringing in styles within a month of the SS11 collections hitting the stores. Their ‘stack em high, sell em cheap’ approach has meant that styles very similar to the designer versions are a very affordable $45-$80, compared with Chloé’s $2300 and the skirts are flying out the door. According to our tracking software, Topshop went out of stock of five key styles within three weeks.

The skirts are selling fast, but none quite as quickly as the style created by Whistles. ‘Carrie‘ available in two lengths (just above the knee and midi) has quite literally thrown the blogosphere headfirst into a sartorial flap. As Jane Shepherdson, Whistles CEO told Grazia ‘It has become the most tweeted and blogged about Whistles piece ever’.

after reading @JenLittleBird article on whistles beautiful carrie skirt, i no longer believe my life is worth living without it.less than a minute ago via web

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Meghan
fashioncircus


When the original 600 skirts sold out in three weeks, the brand reissued the skirt in pink and created an additional two neon hues (blue and yellow) that will hit stores this Sunday.

For brands that jumped onto the trend in September, cha-ching!

We tracked the buzz of pleated skirts across social media over 9 months

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