Jul 19, 2013

Question of the week: How long is your hem?

Skirt (skərt). "A woman's outer garment fastened around the waist and hanging down around the legs." The definition of a skirt is fairly simple, however, there is more to skirts than the dictionaries tell, and economists know it as well!


There are countless different types of skirts: pencil skirts, flared skirts, maxis, minis, knee-lenghts and so on. Whilst some let their carefree hems flow in the wind, others head to the office in tailored pieces that leave no doubts about serious business. Depending on the type of skirt you wear, you can run, dance, hobble, swagger with self-confidence or sneak around pulling your skirt down, trying to keep the hem from reaching vulgar heights.

How, when and where you choose to wear a skirt is a personal matter, but did you know that it is not always just our personal preference that determines the types of skirts we wear? Just like fashion in general, also skirts hold more cultural and societal references than one might think. War times, the joyful roaring twenties and emancipation of women have all been reflected on the skirt trends. There is even a theory about hemline index claiming that the changes in economy have a direct impact on the style of these garments. The hemline index is calculated by measuring hem length as a percentage of the length from floor to waistline. According to this theory, the skimpier the skirts, the higher the index, the better the economy and the fuller the wallets! Many fashionistas have confirmed the theory right, but the scientific value of the hemline index is debatable. Ken Downing, the head of women's wear at Neiman Marcus, told the Business Insider that he does not believe the index is accurate. After having seen the skirt trends at Fashion Weeks last year, he commented: "It's interesting, as a fashion director I no longer believe hemlines are a conversation on trend because it's so particular to a designer and their point of view...We are seeing hemlines below the knee, at the knee and some that are still quite short."

by Stephen Wildish: www.stephenwildish.co.uk

Now, we would like to know how long is your hem?

Have your skirts followed the hemline index and changed into maxis during the current financial crisis or is your wardrobe rebelling against the gloom with cheerful minis? And most importantly, do you think we should start analysing the stock markets on newspapers to try to forecast the trends of next season instead of jumping straight to the comic section...? Share your thoughts below in comments or join the hemline conversation on Facebook by clicking here!

For further reading on skirts, their evolution and more, check out a brand new magazine called Garment that is all about skirts, skirts and skirts! We especially recommend a column by Nikita, one of the magazine's editors, who steps out of her comfort zone, wears a different type of skirt every week and writes about her experiences. Giggles guaranteed!

Jul 3, 2013

Weatherproof summer activities for swappers, shoppers and other stylistas

Too cold to go to the beach? A weather too rainy for minigolf? No worries! In the coming weeks, we will present to you a few summer activities that can take place no matter what the colour of the sky is.

Bees are buzzing around the blooming flowers, yet they are not the only busy bees in July: clothes swappers from around the world have also kept themselves active by having organized some nice happenings for this month. For the first article in the series of sustainably chic summer activities, we put together a list of a few upcoming exchange events and shared some tips for organizing one of your own!


On Sunday the 7th of July in Amsterdam, Krijg de Kleren will take place in Roest, one of the most whimsical hotspots in the city. Be there or be square, for the weatherman has been promising an unusually sunny weather for the day and the location next to a canal is sure to add the much wanted beach feeling to your day!

In Australia, you can swap your winter blues away in Melbourne at an event organized by The Clothing Exchange on the 8th of July. Other than that, the Clothing Exchange team works in Sydney and Canberra as well, so all you Ozzies out there should keep an eye on their website for future events!

All the UKers can check out the agenda for fashion swishing events in UK here. They have quite a full programme for the month, and taking part should be a fun pastime activity whilst waiting for the royal baby!

Fashionistas in the United States can be good, green and glamorous by swapping their clothes on the 17th of July in California. To check out the event and to keep an eye on upcoming happenings in other states, click on their website here.

If we didn't mention your local clothes swapping event, be pro-active and do the following: Click yourself to Google and do a digital search for other clothes swappers in your area. If the number of your search results is a big round zero, don't let a frown turn your face upside down! Call your friends instead and invite them for a spontaneous swapping party accompanied with a picnic in a park or some serious wine sipping in doors. If you wish to organize an event that goes beyond a small get-together, don't hesitate to get in touch with fellow swappers for tips and advice: in Belgium, the local Swishers have even promised to support and help enthusiastic swappers in organizing self-initiated neighbourhood events!

If your friends and their clothes are scattered around the country, join Klädbyte, a sweet Swedish online service for clothes swapping or the more international Swapstyle, where fashionistas can exchange their designer goods. If you are more of a DIY spirit, you can also easily create a digital platform for swapping with Facebook. All you need to do before the fun can begin is create an event, invite all the stylistas in your network to join. After that, set the guidelines for the swapping procedure (shipping etc.) and ask all the participants to snap photos of their clothes and post them online with sizes and other specifications. Voilá!

Now press the play button below to get in the mood for surfing through your closet, choose your swappables and take them on a date to a fashion exchange party - it's partner-swapping at its best!