I wore a tulle tutu-style skirt to homecoming, but now I don’t know what to do with it. IT’S SOO CUTE—I would love to wear it as an everyday outfit, but will it look too *fancy* or weird? —Josselyn, 17, California
Girl, NOTHING is too fancy. If you feel like wearing diamonds and pearls while eating a burrito or a tiara on a hike, just do it! (Keeping practicality in mind, of course. If you’re competing in a triathlon or spelunking in a cave, I probably wouldn’t recommend a satin gown and high heels, unfortunately. I wantchu to be safe!)
Anyway, let’s talk about your skirt. Tulle skirts are soooo pretty, and super fun to twirl around in. I totally don’t blame you for wanting to get the most out of its presence in your wardrobe!
You can put together a simple, great outfit by pairing a form-fitting basic top with your skirt. Charlotte Russe has solid scoop-neck crop tops in a few different colors for only $8 each. This shirt is plain enough so that they won’t steal any attention away from the skirt, and because it’s snug, it will create a nice silhouette when matched with the fullness of the skirt. This knotted crop top is another cool option. I also LOVE the idea of wearing a cool graphic tee with your skirt, like the one Kelis wears in the collage just below. A Rookie tee would be super cute! Wearing a wide belt with any of these looks will define your waist even more, and if you’re not into showing your belly with a crop top, you can use a belt to cover the gap between the two pieces. Here are some prime examples of basic tops worn with not-at-all basic tutus:
The complete opposite of my first approach to this answer also works: A bejeweled or sequined blouse will make your outfit HEAD-TO-TOE FANCY, which, as I mentioned above, is a perfectly fine way to dress for WHATEVER and WHENEVER you want. This silver sequin tank would be lovely with your skirt. You could skip jewelry with this top—the embellished neckline will jazz everything up for you automatically. Here are some more inspiration photos on that formal tip:
To accessorize: A vintage sweater or cropped cardigan would be super cute with any of these looks! So would a bunch of brooches or pins—love this flamingo one! And moto jackets are one of my favorite things ever, especially when they’re worn with something frilly (COUGH YOUR TUTU). It’s that whole badass, rebel girl-meets-ballerina-type of thang that I LUV. This cropped style is pretty perf.
I’m also obsessed with the idea of wearing something “opposite” to a conventionally femme ballet skirt, like this sporty New York Knicks crop. How sick would that be?! Have fun, my tulle queen! —Marie
I feel like I’m not doing the slouchy-chic look right! Help! —Anonymous
I am traditionally unchill in the arena of how to be the laxest with my body-cloths. On any given day, I usually wear some sort of skirt, dress, or complicated layering thing that is definitely Put Together—not casually thrown on. But since it’s winter, I’ve been dressing more like a comfort blob. I have a sense that I’m getting the hang of it, so I’ll tell you my techniques.
Although my slouchy get-ups look just-threw-it-on, they’re a bit more premeditated. Once I have one nailed, then I can throw it on and go!) I have a few workhorse pieces that multitask way hard—one of them is a pair of slouchy jeans. These are often marketed as Boyfriend Jeans but that’s dumb because lol they’re my jeans? I dig these Levi’s 501s, cuffed at the hem, or these ones from Gap (which I actually scored recently on sale for $16, somehow? Watch those sales, doggies!). Loose-fitting denim looks TOPS when paired with a cute, fuzzy pullover or a cool oversized T-shirt, like this rad pocket one.
Another go-to slouchy look: the loose top and leggings combo. I have a couple of pairs of leggings made of opaque enough material to pass as pants. Over these, I throw on a flowy, loose top, like this black linen sheath. I also like a long black tank over black leggings and heeled boots, which looks pretty tuff, but feels like pajamas. To top it off and make it warmer, try a shaggy cardigan or a big, loose menswear-ish jacket. Vintage oversized sweaters like this are all over thrift stores and Etsy, and are cozy and adorable over leggings. Shoe-wise, I default to short or heeled booties like these or these, which finish whatever slouchy, floppy clothing I’m wearing on a sleek note. If you fancy one-piece looks, I really dig said booties with a loose-fitting dress or tunic, like this one.
I have a few more tricks which make SLOB CHIC feel a bit more intentional, yet effortless. One is ROLLING. I roll my sleeves up a few turns to just above my wrist and my pants a bit above my ankles. It breaks up the slouchiness with a bit of informal tailoring, plus it gets baggy pants out of the way of your bike chain and saggy sleeves out of the way of your handwriting! Another method is making your outfit a BALANCING ACT. I will often wear a mondo baggy knit pullover over leggings with boots to contrast the cloud I am on top with something more fitted. Or, with my Not Boyfriend Jeans, I’ll wear slim shoes, like my black booties, rather than chunky boots like Docs. The third thing I think about is COLOR. I’m not firm on this point, so feel free to debunk it, but my comfortable outfits are dopest in neutral tones, because chill fabrics + chill colors = chill persona? All my clothes on this front are in various tans, grays, blacks, and whites. It keeps it sophisticated and, as the French probably don’t say, le slouchy chic.
The best thing about a comfy wardrobe is that it is one of the most easily scorable at a Thriftstore Near U. I’ve found wonderful layering pieces at the Goodwill Outlet! So try out these basic-est of the basic pieces, and next time you actually can look like you just rolled out of bed in the very best way—and actually have that be true in reality. —Dylan
I’ve been looking at a few pairs of knee and thigh socks, but I have no clue how to wear them! Please help! —Nicky, 16, Bridgeport, CT
I LOVE long socks. Knee/thigh socks look amazing with skirts with hemlines that that graze the knee or above—iif you wear them with long skirts, they can just look like full tights. Let’s take a cue from our ’60s queen and one of the pioneers of the miniskirt, the designer Mary Quant. She wore knee socks all the time and featured them frequently in her own designs during the mod era. Keeping Mary in mind, one of my top looks for long socks is wearing them with a pleated miniskirt like one of these. This black-and-white dress would look super cute with knee socks! For a more modern look, wear them with a chambray shirtdress like this one, or a menswear-style button-down. Sporty tube socks with a stripe at the top would look amazing with this! Here’s some high-fashion high sock inspiration:
Thigh-highs also look amazing with denim cutoffs or high-waisted shorts. As for shoes, anything really goes. Though I do think they look great with Mary Janes, creepers, and platforms (though I often wear them with lace-up booties like these because IDGAF!) I love how Taylor from Dress to the Nines styled them with Converse, below. And if you are feelin’ crafty, check out this awesome Rookie DIY from Marlena on how to make your own knee socks! A bit more inspo before I leave U:
Hope this helps! —Marie
I dyed my hair purple (woo!! excitement), but it makes me really indecisive!! Do I worry about my hair clashing with the colors of my outfit, or do I roll with the punches?! What if I wear a purple dress—I’ll probably end up looking like a walking crayon! Should I try and make an effort to coordinate my outfits with my hair? —Claire, 16, Pennsylvania
I don’t think you need to sweat it at all! I am guessing that, if you dyed your hair purple, it’s because you love the color purple, no? So why not show it off? Own your purpledom! Instead of worrying what colors might clash with your head, or whether or not you might look like a “walking crayon,” think about it another way, and think about how you can wear like, an all-white outfit and how it would be automatically made even cooler with your purple hair! Or how maybe you can dress really prim and proper, but because you have purple hair, it’s going to look totally badass! The purple hair will always work for you you because it’s an extension of you and you are clearly awesome. As long as you wear what you love, you will look aces.
Also, I have to say, when I was little, my mom’s favorite outfit was a purple suit that she wore with purple hose and purple suede pumps. I called her “Super Grape,” she looked amazing, and to this day, it is one of my all-time favorite looks of her. Basically: Go full Super Grape if that’s what you want! —Laia ♦
Clothes. So difficult, yet so much goddamn fun! If you’re having trouble bridging that gap, email Marie a question to [email protected]. Make sure to include your NAME/NICKNAME/INITIALS, AGE, and CITY, please!