Courte Couture

Though we were born into the freedom to show our ankles, we seem to have been born without the good sense to know where to draw the hem and when to cover our delightful gams up. There comes a time in every woman’s life when she feels it may be time to put away the mini skirts of her past. The problem is this seems to happen at a different time for every woman. The generally believed rule places the wall at age 35, but as we know, one rule rarely has the omnipotence to govern every situation. This rule, particularly, falters on many key points, such as, the roles the woman assumes throughout her life, her level of fitness, and the way she wants the world to see her.

Women go through life constantly evolving, absorbing new titles, like Wife, Mother and C.E.O., and playing many roles at once. Perhaps the mini skirt age limit was not set arbitrarily, but was set at a point where most women have attained titles that require more distinction. If skirt length is directly proportional to the amount of respect one needs to command in any given situation, when you recollect your youthful roles of daughter, friend and sister, you can see that mini skirts were completely permissible, as you did not need to command vast amounts of respect during your daily adventures. When you get older and apply for a job title, you soon find that short skirts are not appropriate job interview attire.

As I have adamantly stated before, every body is beautiful and all you can do is dress in a way that makes you feel confident. Unfortunately, this system can go awry when a woman crosses the mid-thirties threshold at the peak of physical fitness. This provides her with the ability to feel confident in a dress that may be a little too short for the acceptance of her peer group. This statistic outlier may be due to more easily obtained self-esteem coupled with the male attention, whether it be positive or negative, she may receive for her behaviour. More commonly, women become more conservative in their dress when they, along with their male counterparts, notice their girlish figures taking on more womanly curves because once you’ve got the goods, a 60’s style mini dress becomes less scrumptious and more scandalous.

Whether we know it or not, we are all trying to obtain some sort of image that we have valued and set as our icon since we first laid eyes on it. This image can be a certain style we admire or an abstract ideal we conjure in our minds when we think of the kind of person we want to be someday. For some, this image will include wearing shorter than average skirts and dresses well into their forties and for some the time for rebelling against their grade school skirt-length dress code will come to an end much sooner than 35; I seem to be somewhere in the middle. Through every stage of my life, I have had to live with the fact that my legs are disproportionally long for my average stature. This makes shopping for a skirt or dress that is neither too short for the abnormally long stretch of human between my waist and my knees, nor made to look shorter than it really is by the optical illusion that are my extra long femurs. These troubles have grown increasingly more bothersome as I have matured and longed for a more respectable look.

I have not yet taken on many roles that require me to cover up to any degree, I am content with my fitness level and 35 is far on the horizon that I can’t see what it looks like from here but the thought in the back of my mind of what image I want to portray to the world has me coming to resent any skirt or dress I have in my collection that rests higher than a few inches above my knees. I still have a time and a place to wear mini skirts but, for the most part, I feel they don’t fit into my new desire to be viewed as a bright young woman, respected for my wit, humour and charm.