You can't go wrong by pairing your herringbone skirt with a solid-colored top.

How to Style a Herringbone Skirt

by Jennifer Blair

Certain patterns have a classic appeal that are timeless. With its subtle appearance, herringbone falls into the classic category, particularly with fall and winter fashions. However, while it offers a timeless look that is easy to wear, a herringbone skirt can put off a stuffy, masculine feel. The key is to create contrast between the skirt and the other items in your outfit, so you finish with a polished look that still feels modern and feminine.

Leave it Alone

While herringbone's pattern is subtle and understated, it's commonly woven on substantial fabrics such as wool, tweed or twill, so a full herringbone suit -- skirt and blazer -- can create an overpowering look. If you want your skirt to stand out, don't layer herringbone on herringbone. To echo the look of your skirt in another part of your outfit, incorporate smaller herringbone touches. Opt for accessories that are made of a more delicate material such as a silk scarf with a herringbone pattern.

Keep it Simple

Style your herringbone skirt with ease by pairing it with solid pieces. For the office, a crisp white button-down blouse can look striking with a herringbone skirt; pair it with simple heels or ballet flats for a polished, professional look. For a more casual outfit, pair your skirt with a fine gauge V-neck sweater in a bold contrasting color. Wear tights that match your skirt and knee-high boots for a chic, stylish look.

Play with Texture

Since your herringbone skirt is likely made of a fabric with a masculine-like texture, pairing the skirt with more delicate or feminine fabrics can help balance your look. Opt for a lace top for a sweet girly look; a silk or satin blouse can also help counter the heavy look of a herringbone skirt. Wearing it with a top in a soft, luxurious fabric such as velvet can create an eye-catching contrast, too. If you want to modernize the look of your herringbone skirt, consider pairing it with a leather blazer or jacket -- the smooth leather plays nicely off the textured herringbone.

Incorporate Pattern

You may be apprehensive about wearing other patterns with your herringbone skirt, but because the pattern is subtle, it can be fun to experiment with other prints. Plus, it’s an easy way to make the skirt have a more contemporary feel. The trick is choosing a pattern that features the same colors as the herringbone skirt so your outfit has a cohesive look. For example, if your skirt features a black and white herringbone pattern, pair it with a black and white floral-print top. If you’re wearing a gray and black herringbone skirt, a gray and black animal-print scarf can give your outfit a more playful look.

About the Author

Based in New York City, Jennifer Blair has been covering all things home and garden since 2001. Her writing has appeared on, World Lifestyle, and House Logic. Blair holds a Bachelor of Arts in Writing Seminars from the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland.

Photo Credits

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