How to Wear a Pencil Skirt

Katy Perry wears a matching pencil skirt and halter top combo.
Katy Perry wears a matching pencil skirt and halter top combo. (Image: Ryan Pierse/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images)

A pencil skirt is a knee-length, form-fitting skirt often worn in a professional setting. Whereas pencil skirts are most commonly seen in the office, you can play around with a pencil skirt to make it more versatile. To style a pencil skirt for both formal and informal settings, pair your skirt with a blouse, cardigan, leather jacket or blazer.

Pencil Skirt with Blouse

You can pair a variety of blouse types -- long-sleeved, short-sleeved, sleeveless -- with a variety of pencil skirt types. For an alternative look for a more informal setting, pair a denim pencil skirt with a white blouse. For shoes, opt for cream heels or white sneakers. For a more business-like tone, team a white, colored or patterned blouse with a black pencil skirt and black heels. For a fancy affair, opt for a floral print, lace or vibrantly-hued pencil skirt with a neutral-colored blouse and heels.

Pencil Skirt and Cardigan

For a more conservative look, sport a cardigan with a pencil skirt. To color coordinate, match the color of your cardigan with the color of your pencil skirt. Continue the color scheme with matching color heels or flats. Or opt for neutral colored heels in black or cream. You can also choose to color block your skirt and cardigan by pairing a green pencil skirt with a pink cardigan or a blue pencil skirt with an orange cardigan. If color is not your style, go with an all-black, all-white or black-and-white cardigan and pencil skirt combo.

Pencil Skirt and Leather Jacket

For an edgy look, wear your pencil skirt with a leather jacket. For an all-leather look, wear a leather pencil skirt with a leather jacket and a white v-neck, graphic tee or neutral-colored, patterned or brightly colored blouse. For shoes, dress the look up with black heels or slip into a pair of black combat boots to capitalize on the rock-and-roll feel of the jacket. For colder weather, you can wear a thick sweater of any color under a black leather jacket with a black pencil skirt and black or cream heels.

Pencil Skirt with Blazer

For a professional, office-appropriate look, team your pencil skirt with a blazer. You can opt for a two-piece pencil skirt and blazer in matching colors or in a patterned print like paisley or stripes. For a top, choose a crisp white button-down, neutral-colored silk camisole or even a white v-neck. Slip into black heels or flats for shoes. For a monochromatic pencil skirt and blazer combo, you can add in a colored blouse or camisole for a splash of color, or go with a white or black top while sporting the color in a pair of heels in pink, silver or even neon yellow.

Pencil Skirt with Sheer Top

For an inventive way to wear a pencil skirt, team a pencil skirt with a sheer top. To maintain a sophisticated feel, color coordinate by matching the color of the top with the color of the skirt. Pair a black sheer top with a black pencil skirt. Tuck the top into the skirt and wear a black bandeau underneath. For shoes, opt for a pair of black heels or even black trainers.

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