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How to Style a Pleated Skirt: Your Crash Course

Last Updated: April 15, 2022

The timelessness of a pleated skirt is unmatched. The versatility of the ways you can style one range from preppy to goth to grunge—there are no limits. 

Pleated tennis skirts have been in and out of style over the last few years, peaking in the 2010s with brands like American Apparel making it a staple piece in their campaigns. Any way you turned in 2014, you were likely to see a clothing ad with a model dressed in a pleated tennis skirt. 

With the resurgence of the style coming back full swing this last year, it is time to take a refresher on how to style a pleated skirt in different ways. You don’t have to stick to one aesthetic to rock a pleated skirt, which is something most people don’t realize. There are no rules in fashion! 

Plus, there are plenty of affordable places to buy a pleated skirt, as well as a designer range that is simply irresistible.

How to Style a Pleated Skirt

Here are our favorite ways:


Knee High Boots and A Cropped Cardigan

One of the greatest love stories in fashion is ultra miniskirts and boots that dominate the outfit. A simple pleated miniskirt will stand out when paired with a baby tee and boots that give your body more length. 

This combination gives your body a lengthier silhouette while looking gorgeous. Don’t forget to add a cropped cardi on top to stay warm or spice it up. In winter we recommend faux-fur trimmed cardigans to stay warm and look chic. 

Pro-tip: neutral or nude fleece-lined leggings are perfect for layering in the winter and staying warm while stylish.


With a Turtleneck

You can never go wrong pairing a pleated tennis skirt with a turtleneck, but it doesn’t have to be so basic. Like we said, there are no limits to fashion.

The pleated skirt will accentuate your waist and lengthen your silhouette when paired with a turtleneck. A chunky knit can also be styled with it for a winter-bimbo look. And don’t forget the faux fur hat!


Leather Jacket and Blacked Out Sunglasses 

If you’re looking for a monochromatic look, all black is definitely the way to go. A leather blazer or jacket styled on top of a simple pleated skirt gives that off-duty model vibe—super 90s chic. 

90s sunglasses are also back—their retro rectangular frame is the perfect accessory for a pleated skirt look.


Go Designer

Burberry has done us a solid with creating the most classic pleated skirts in their iconic pattern, even giving us blue, pink, and white colorways for variety. 

The pleated mini skirt from their collection gives the perfect pop of color to any outfit. If you’re not on a budget or looking for a splurge, this is the way to go. 

Since the pattern of the skirt is already a lot on its own, we recommend styling the top with a solid, oversized button-down. To further accentuate the look, adding a sweater vest on top will be the icing on the cake. 


Try Preppy Chic 

This classic way of styling a pleated miniskirt is never going to go out of style, and it is perfect for those who want to be comfortable. A pullover sweater on top of a collared shirt is a to-die-for outfit. 

The oversized fit of a pullover balances the skirt to make your body’s silhouette lengthy and sleek. Paired with platform loafers or mary janes and a pair of cute ankle socks,  the look can do no wrong!


Pair With Denim

Nobody said you had to stick to one fabric—break out with a denim pleated skirt for a refreshing take on the trend. To take it to the next level with a mesh longsleeve (a-la Bella Hadid)!

Bottom Line 

No matter how you style a pleated skirt, all of these ways will definitely have you inspired and stepping out of your comfort zone. There is more to life than not exploring outside of your regular fashion!

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