There’s nothing Charlie Gowans-Eglinton doesn’t know about fashion – from A-list outfits to the best B-corp brands. This month she stands up for the statement print skirt.

This sort of on-again-off-again weather calls for maximum versatility from your wardrobe, so you’re not suddenly freezing in your cotton dress or sweltering in jeans and a jumper. My go-to is a midi skirt in a statement print. You can wear your favourite outfits in confidence with a seamless bra or bodysuit.

It’s much easier to layer than a dress, as you can tuck a blouse or jumper in, or layer it over a bodysuit – or better yet, a swimsuit on your holidays (a midi skirt earns its space in your suitcase ten times over – just by changing your top or swapping your earrings you can wear it on repeat without looking like you’re wearing it on repeat). And rather than top-to-toe print, there’s scope for adding slick neutrals for work, contrasting brights for play, metallics for evening.

On cooler days

When you’re wearing a bold, multicolour print on the bottom half, your first instinct might be to stick to a very neutral colour up top rather than add another bright. But that’s not the only option. Don’t be afraid to clash brights, or to break those archaic rules of what goes together.

Instead, try a bright, oversized knit in a single block colour. That might be a colour that’s already somewhere in the print, or a contrasting one that you always feel great in, but either way, it will balance a bold skirt beautifully – and be a joy to wear. 

In the evening

The slinkier sort of midi – think satin, draping or pleating – can be styled up or down to suit most dress codes. It’s my pick for summer evenings, eating al fresco dinners and propping up the cocktail bar afterwards.

Rather than colour-blocking in this instance, I’d mix in metallics and a little dose of black to make even a bright colour feel instantly more nighttime-y. And a great pair of earrings always makes me feel fully dressed.

On a hot holiday

‘Breezy’ is my watchword on holiday, and a wafty skirt with lots of volume (so nothing clings to you in the heat) is spot on. Unlike a dress, you can layer a skirt over your swimsuit without clashing straplines for lunch beside the beach. Add a lightweight linen shirt or jacket when the breeze picks up or for poking around a cobbled old town.

Packing similar tones makes for easy mix-and-matching when you’re away, but rather than top to toe colour, I like to add another note – like a metallic bag or a striking pair of sandals

In the city

A white shirt is the perfect foil for most things, and a stand-out printed skirt is no exception. Rather than a workwear basic, I prefer an elevated take on the shirt with embroidery, a frilled collar, or a trapeze shape that will balance out the volume of the skirt.

You can add loafers or ankle boots depending on your destination (white looks fresh, but black will work too), or in the hottest months, I love smart espadrilles for city wear.

At the weekend

You can still wear a statement print to push a trolley around Waitrose or pop out for the papers and a coffee on a Sunday morning (I certainly do). But on days like those, I love sticking to monochromes for a more casual take.

Swap your white trainers for this espadrille-soled pair for summer, and add a goes-with-everything shoulder bag. A neutral jumper softens the graphic black and white mix without adding colour. For an easy tweak to a smarter look, try a blazer instead.

 

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