3 Tips On Styling Patterned Pencil Skirts

The Pencil Skirt worn Preppy and EdgyBored with black? Mix up your look with a patterned pencil skirt. The beauty of a pencil’s conservative silhouette is that, even when splashed with a wild print, it’s almost always work appropriate. Whether you go preppy with polka dots or toughen your look with an edgy plaid, you can play up your personal style without losing your professional polish.

Here are three tips to keep in mind when selecting and styling your patterned pencil skirt:

1. FIT MATTERS: Your pencil skirt should hug your figure, but not so much so that it causes unflattering bulging or becomes uncomfortable. While a fail-safe length is a hem that hits just above the knee, you may want to go shorter to elongate the look of your legs, or longer if you’re on the taller side or want to create an extra-sleek look.

2. GO SOLID ON TOP: To balance out a busy pattern, your best bet is to stick with a solid color top. This also helps ensure your skirt remains your outfit’s star attraction! We like to play up the contrast between dark and light. If your skirt is a darker hue, choose a brighter top, like we’ve done in our polka-dot look above, and vice versa.

3. TUCKING IS OPTIONAL: While the traditionally worn tucked-in shirt shows off your curves and helps create an hourglass shape, it’s not your only option. An untucked top can be equally stylish, and is a great choice if you’d prefer to keep your stomach under wraps. To prevent the look from becoming sloppy, choose a top with a slim cut and a shorter length. You’ll maintain your body-conscious, elongated look, feel comfortable—and look great!

Left Look:
June Polka Dot Skirt
Vicente Pleated Henley Blouse
Torrence Cube Necklace

Right Look:
Emilia Plaid Pencil Skirt
Hanna Metal Fan Bib Necklace
Maggie Cut-Out Scoop Neck Tank

Like the items you see here? Mention them in your note to your stylist when you schedule your next Fix. (If you already have a Fix scheduled or receive your Fixes automatically, you can now update your note to your stylist, too!)

Visit our Pinterest boards for more inspiration!


  1. I love pencil skirts! In order to find your perfect length, measure your leg from crotch to mid-knee, then from mid-knee to floor. Cut with color wherever you are longer to create more balanced proportions. For example, if your thighs are longer, pick a skirt that hits above the knee. If your lower leg carries the length, opt for a below the knee style. If you are pretty balanced or have long legs, you are lucky enough that you can go with pretty much any length!

  2. I like the solid top with polka dot pencil skirt and think it might be a good option for my upcoming graduate school interview. I am not a fan of the plaid skirt though.

  3. Any tips on how to smooth out a tucked in shirt? Whenever I tuck a shirt into a maxi or pencil skirt, I get some unattractive shirt bulges…

  4. What colors are the Emilia Plaid Pencil Skirt? Is that mustard and black or navy blue? Can’t tell on my computer. Love these looks!

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