The maxi skirt is by far my favorite fashion piece. Maxis are comfortable, easy-to-wear and give your look a cool laid back feel. The downside is that this key piece can be tricky to wear. When done right, a maxi can be fresh, cutting edge and enviably cool. When done wrong, however, you can look dowdy, frumpy and sloppy.
The most important rule when it comes to maxis is to make sure to keep your proportions balanced. If you’re wearing a flowy maxi, keep the rest of your look structured or streamlined. If your maxi is form-fitted, you can go for an allover streamlined look (add platforms or wedges for a super slimming effect) or incorporate some looser layers into your look.
There’s nothing wrong with looking to famous style setters for some inspiration, especially when it comes to trickier pieces (they do have access to the best stylists in the world, after all). Read on to learn how to recreate the four fabulous maxi-looks pictured above.
1. Ashley Olsen: Easy-Chic: Ashley Olsen recently showcased one of my favorite ways to wear a maxi by teaming her mint green chiffon style with an oversized knit. This pairing can sometimes look dowdy so take a cue from Ashley and make sure the skirt is on the fitted side. An airy fabric teamed with a more cozy one will also create an unexpected contrast that looks effortlessly awesome. Ashley rounded out the mix with a bunch of Chanel accessories, including cap-tow flats, a chanel bag and long strand pearl necklace.
Skirt: Antik Batik Bowie Long Skirt, $290; NOW: $145
Sweater: Vince V-Neck Sweater, $295
Bag: Marc Jacobs Bruna Quilted Leather Tote, $1,498
Shoes: Prada Bi-Color Cap-Toe Flat, $390
Necklace: Carolee Simulated Pearl Necklace, $125
2. Blake Lively: Funky Fashionista. Leave it to Blake Lively’s alter ego, Serena van der Woodsen, to make a maxi look incredibly sexy and glam. In true Serena fashion, there’s a lot going on but it somehow works without looking too crazy of cluttered. I love that she (and by she, I mean costume designer Eric Daman) combined a bright red Rag & Bone maxi with Rag & Bone’s sheer Aubry tank topped off with a glittery vest from Theyskens Theory, for a boho-sexy-glam trifecta that has become Serena’s signature. The Prada platforms, Valentino Rock Stud Tote, glittery Daniel Espinosa necklace and stacks of bangles from M.C.L. by Matthew Campbell Laurenza round out the eclectic mix perfectly.
Skirt: Rag & Bone Feather Maxi Skirt, $395
Top: David Lerner Sheer Shirt, $29.51
Vest: Forever 21 Beaded Woven Vest, $16.90
Bag: Brahmin ‘Lisa’ Tri-Color Satchel, $325
Shoes: Prada Cutout Platform Sandals, $600
Necklace: ABS by Allen Schwartz Pavé Link Chain Necklace, $195
Bangles: Chamak by Priya Kakkar Crystal Bangles, $22.99
3. Olivia Palermo: Understated Statement–Maker: Olivia Palermo has the uncanny ability to keep things casual without looking under dressed and fashion-forward without looking like she’s trying. At the premiere of Friends With Benefits, Olivia looked as polished as ever in a crisp white button up teamed with a printed blue maxi topped off with a skinny black belt by Reiss. She used this sweet pairing as a backdrop for some high-fashion extras, including a red Dior bag, funky Giuseppe Zanotti booties, a spiked bangle by CC Skye and a shiny cocktail ring, creating the perfect casual-glam look.
Skirt: Girl by Band of Outsiders Bobbi Skirt, $715
Top: Equiptment Signature Blouse, $208
Bag: Christian Dior Cannage Rendez-Vous Bag, $610
Shoes: Alexander McQueen Gold Faithful Boot, $1175; NOW: $646
Belt: Reiss Lila Skinny Belt, $90
Bracelet: CC Skye Gold Spike Bracelet, $140
4. Rachel Bilson: Sleek and Sophisticated: On Fashon’s Night Out, Rachel Bilson showcased a minimal maxi look that managed to speak volumes in its simplicity. She offset the bohemian vibe of her flowy Vanessa Bruno maxi by a sharp, structured blazer (also by Vanessa Bruno), adding definition and sophistication. To add a bit of sex appeal to this covered-up style, she went with a sheer A.L.C tank with a neckline that was just low enough to keep things interesting. I love that she skipped the accessories, save for a glittery headband from Luv AJ, showcasing her panache for less-is-more . While her Chloe wedges stayed mostly under wraps, they provide a great contribution to this look by adding height to Rachel’s petite frame, creatng a more sleek and streamlined effect.
Skirt: Theory Callian C Long Skirt, $295; NOW: $147.50
Blazer: Vanessa Bruno Strong Shouldered Jacket, $580; NOW: $174
Tank:Joie Jersey Camisole, $15.99
Shoes: Chloe Leather Platform Wedge, $695
Headband: Luv AJ Rose Gold Spiked Headpiece, $9
– SABRINA ALEXIS