One thing I love about maxi skirts is that they transcend seasonal popularity contests and retain their prominence year after year without fail. Though you can rock a maxi skirt in winter just as well as you can in fall, summer maxi skirts are my favorite. The Spring/Summer 2023 collections at New York Fashion Week is evidence of this.
Maybe it’s the way they flow and move with every step, the easy breezy feeling you get when rocking one, or the bright colors and florals. But one thing is certain; there are more occasions to wear a maxi skirt than there are for micro minis and booty shorts.
You only need to figure out how to style different styles of maxi skirts for different occasions in summer.
But first, here are some rules to live by if you want to look elegant and fashionable in a maxi
- Consider your Age
They say age is just a number, except when it comes to fashion. If you are a woman over 40, rocking those body-hugging long skirts with a slit that ends near the waist or sheer skirts is simply inappropriate. Let’s leave those to the youngsters, along with crop tops that leave the entire abdominal section out.
To avoid looking frumpy, avoid A-line, pencil and body-hugging maxi skirts and go for straight, ankle-length options. It’s also important to learn about your body type and what kind of maxis look good with it.
- Balance the Print
This simply means minimizing the amount of print you wear in one outfit. For example, if the skirt is floral, try to wear a top that’s one color. This doesn’t apply if you get a matching floral set of course but it’s important to note.
- Balance Proportions
As you balance the prints, keep the proportions in mind as well. A flowy, A-line or floaty skirt goes with a fitting, skin-like top that stops right at the waist, while a straight body-hugging skirt goes with a top with some flow.
- Aim for Ankle Length
A maxi skirt should hit you at the ankle, no matter what shoe you are wearing. If it’s longer than that, wear a nice heel to lengthen your legs, and stick to flat shoes if the skirt isn’t that long.
Best Ways to Style a Summer Maxi Skirt
1. Keep it casual
- Crop top
A summer maxi skirt is best worn casually though a few styles can work for the office and other formal occasions. Top on the list of what to pair with a maxi skirt is a crop top, especially if you have a high-medium waist skirt. Something about this style makes you look taller, thinner and younger. Depending on what type of skirt you have, you can wear a form-fitting crop top or a flowy one.
- Sleeveless top
A good alternative to crop tops is a sleeveless top, whether it’s a camisole, a tank top or a sleeveless blouse. Tuck it under the skirt and accessorize with jewelry or a scarf and you are good to go.
With any of these options, you can throw on a denim or white shirt over the top to cover up the arms or simply make the outfit more stylish. This look goes perfectly with a hip-hugging and straight skirt, and you must leave the shirt button open. Alternatively, close a few buttons and tie a knot on the shirt at the waist.
My all-time favorite match for a casual maxi skirt in summer is a t-shirt, be it a plain white tee or a band t-shirt. You can tuck in the t-shirt or make a knot at the waist and then find a good pair of sneakers or sandals to go with the outfit. It doesn’t get simpler than this, and it’s so chic.
2. Go monochromatic
When I think about someone who wears maxi skirts really well, Kim Kardashian immediately comes to mind. One of her signature looks is a matching set of bootie-hugging maxi skirts and tops in nude colors. Buying a matching set takes all the guesswork out of it, so all you need is a nice strappy heel and accessories. I especially love floral sets on tall girls.
That said, you can make your own monochromatic look by combining two pieces of the same color. Black on black and white on white are particularly great options, whether you choose a crop top, button-down shirt, or t-shirt. When you find the perfect match, break the monotony with a nude shoe, a wicker hat and gold/silver jewelry.
3. Try Semi-formal with a Shirt
Imagine this- a blush pleated maxi skirt, crisp button-down shirt tucked in, nude heels and a clutch. This is the style of a lady who knows what she’s doing. It’s elegant, classy, timeless and official. Yes, you can go to the office, hold a meeting and even lead a church in it.
But the button-down shirt/blouse also goes well with a straight bold-colored maxi skirt or an A-line one.
4. Tropical with Bra Top
And since we are talking about summer, we can’t forget how a maxi skirt makes a fantastic cover-up at the beach. Rock your two-piece bikini or a bralette on top and then do a flowy, preferably sheer maxi skirt and flip flops or sandals. A white fishtail or tiered skirt with a black or white bralette or bra top makes a perfect match for beach days or pool parties. And if you live in Miami, this is basically an everyday look.
5. Throw on a Jacket
Tops and t-shirts are all good, but you can elevate a maxi skirt so much more with a jacket. A denim jacket over a maxi is particularly good for warm weather because denim is cool and absorbent. But if you have a bomber jacket or something cute and cropped, feel free to see if it goes well with the skirt.
For business casual and office looks, opt for a long line blazer over a straight, pleated or A-line skirt. The jacket adds structure to the outfit and transforms an otherwise casual look to formal.
6. Accessorize for Summer
Not all maxi skirt outfits need jewelry or accessories. For example, a maxi skirt and t-shirt outfit looks perfect as it is and you don’t need to accessorize with anything more than sunglasses. This applies to the shirt and maxi skirt combo as well.
That said, you can always find ways to take a maxi skirt outfit over the edge with a nice handbag, sunnies, hat and even a belt. Choose a clutch bag if you are attending an official occasion like a wedding and a sling bag for casual situations.
If you are headed for the beach, a wide brim hat and huge sunnies are always appropriate. I like to only wear a belt when pairing a maxi skirt with a tucked in low waist top. The belt creates definition and draws attention to your waist.
Contrary to popular belief, maxi skirts are better suited for summer than any other season in the year. They are breezy, flowy and more comfortable than a lot of summer attire. And if trends are anything to go by, maxi skirts are making a comeback big time, just like their sister the maxi dress.
To style a maxi skirt for summer, wear an open, breathable top like a cotton tee, shirt or crop top and pair that with some sandals or strappy heels. Be sure to balance proportions and prints when picking the right top and shoe for your maxi.