WVW: What V Wore

WVW: Purple, Reigned In* (plus midi-length tips)

You want to hear something freaky? One year ago on October 4, 2010, I posted this date night look in WVW: Purple Reign:

*WVW = What V Wore
Dress and scarf: Express • Bracelets: Abbey Dawn by Avril Lavigne • Boots: Sam Edelman • Clutch: DecJuba

Completely coincidentally, exactly one year later on October 4, 2011, I revisited my purple pieces, this time reigning in the skin exposure since I wore this to work. Same scarf, same boots, old Banana Republic wrap dress. I guess October 4th is Purple Day in my world.

I shopped my closet for a change…aren’t you proud of me? I usually do that for like the first five minutes of a new season. Have seriously had that midi-length wrap dress forever, so this post is proof that everything comes back as a “trend” at some point—and midi lengths are definitely having a moment. It actually took me a long time to really like midi-length pieces, but I’ve learned they can be very flattering when they meet some basic guidelines.

Tips for Wearing Midi-Length Dresses and Skirts

  • Look for pieces that are fitted through the waist and hip, with a pencil or slight a-line silhouette.
  • Avoid a full or circle skirt unless the piece is vintage and you’re working a retro look.
  • Avoid patterns unless it’s a midi dress. Printed, midi-length wrap dresses are pretty much universally flattering.
  • Avoid thick fabrics like heavy wool, denim, and corduroy.
  • Avoid pleats and plaid unless the fabric is silk chiffon. Pleated or plaid midi-length in any other fabric will add weight and look dowdy.
  • Pair midi-length skirts with form-fitted tops. Proportion is what keeps midis from looking dated and boring. If you’re wearing longer and fuller on the bottom, wear a sweater or top that hugs your top half.
  • Accent your waist or you’ll look like you’re wearing a sack. Or worse, a muumuu. Add a waist-cinching belt and enhance or create an hourglass shape.

Are you a fan of midi-length skirts and dresses?

The Author



V is the founding editor of GRIT & GLAMOUR, a professional content developer by day, and a die-hard Southerner. When she's not writing or trolling Instagram, she's spending time with her other loves: her Aussie husband and dog Macy.

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WVW: Paisley for Pumpkins*


  1. October 7, 2011 at 10:12 am — Reply

    Vahni you look gorgeous! I love your sultry looks 🙂 Those boots are to die for, and your advice for wearing midis is spot on! Thanks so much!

  2. October 7, 2011 at 10:16 am — Reply

    You look gorgeous! I like the pop of purple and the way you broke up the color with the black dress. I also like the change of setting. You house looks very Southern and I love the long shutters.

  3. October 7, 2011 at 10:21 am — Reply

    Wonderful advice, fabulous you in purple.
    I love last years curls and flowers, and adore how the midi dress loves and enhances your figure this 4th of October, ahhhhhhhhhhhh.
    Mil besos and a wonderful week end, my dear friend.

  4. October 7, 2011 at 10:29 am — Reply

    Your purple boots and scarf are perfect (oh how I love purple)!! I adore midi skirts; they are my favorite actually! I couldn’t agree more with your tips.

  5. October 7, 2011 at 10:36 am — Reply

    Oooo lala lady…you are looking haute in them boots!!! Love purple, and this post totally makes me think i need to run out and bet a few more purple pieces:)
    Have a great weekend!

    • October 10, 2011 at 12:19 pm — Reply

      Hey you! Happy to see your name here. Welcome back from your long hiatus, and thank you!

  6. October 7, 2011 at 11:37 am — Reply

    I bought a midi with an A line cut that works perfect for me. While I dig the new accordion pleated styles they just don’t suit my 5’1 frame and I find something that is fitted and flares gives me the trend but not the bulky fabric that goes with it.

  7. October 7, 2011 at 1:12 pm — Reply

    I found your blog via Sacramento. Your blog is great , smart and helpful! I wish I could write half as good as you! Plus you are a stunning woman with great personality.

    • October 10, 2011 at 12:23 pm — Reply

      Hi Victoria, welcome! Thanks for your sweet comment. I hope you’ll visit again soon!

  8. October 7, 2011 at 1:46 pm — Reply

    Purple is such a stunning colour on you! I can only wear midi lengths with knee high boots as otherwise they seem to make me look fat, short and dumpy. Hey, ho!! Bon week-end 🙂

  9. October 7, 2011 at 1:55 pm — Reply

    Yay for purple! I can’t say I actively seek out midi lengths, but always seem to end up with them, because I don’t go short and knee length on a short ass like me can sometimes be midi. I also have a lot of vintage skirts that are just that length, and I don’t really like to alter things. And anyway, like you say, a fitted waist and some highish shoes and midi looks great!

    • October 10, 2011 at 12:25 pm — Reply

      HAAAA! Your comment made me chuckle, Franca. Thanks for stopping by!

  10. October 7, 2011 at 2:01 pm — Reply

    FRESH OUT: WVW: Purple, Reigned In* (plus midi-length tips) http://ow.ly/6QrKv

  11. October 7, 2011 at 2:11 pm — Reply

    I remember the first look! Love all that color. Purple Day sounds like a plan.

    I love midi dresses – the length adds a lot of character, I think, and you can sort of accessorize up without going overboard. I don’t think I’ve ever worn a wrap, though, so maybe that’s something I should consider. I love this look on you!

  12. October 7, 2011 at 2:14 pm — Reply

    Those boots will look amazing with any outfit you pair them with. Gorgeous! I’ve been trying to shop my closet more, definitely need to keep it up.

  13. October 7, 2011 at 5:00 pm — Reply

    FRESH OUT: WVW: Purple, Reigned In* (plus midi-length tips) http://ow.ly/6QrKv

  14. October 7, 2011 at 5:02 pm — Reply

    Looking great & sharing great tips. @gritandglamour: Purple, Reigned In* (plus midi-length tips) http://j.mp/pn1i9V

  15. October 7, 2011 at 7:03 pm — Reply

    Très sublime Madame V ! I think you’re going to give Stevie Nicks a run for her chiffon there!

  16. October 7, 2011 at 8:17 pm — Reply

    You look fabulous in purple! I’m loving midi lengths on other people but I can’t say I’ve found anything for myself yet.

  17. October 7, 2011 at 8:35 pm — Reply

    Thanks, doll! RT @noguiltfashion Looking great & sharing great tips. @gritandglamour: Purple, Reigned In* http://j.mp/pn1i9V

  18. October 8, 2011 at 12:37 am — Reply

    Oh my gosh I think the whole blogging world is doing a piece on midi length dresses! You read my mind. Check out my midi post if you have time. It’s my newest, below.

    I think your tips for wearing midi length skirts and dresses is spot on. When I first saw the trend my first thought was “NO! Frump alert frump alert!” Now I’m warming up to it, but one still must be careful not to let it get dowdy. I would add that high heels help this length change from frumpy to elegant.

    Also I wanted to say that I loved your purple post last year and I’ve been thinking about adding some purple to my wardrobe ever since, but except for a pair of shoes and hose I haven’t been that adventurous.

    • October 10, 2011 at 12:33 pm — Reply

      Thanks for your comment, Heather! I pretty much have equated midi lengths with frumpiness too, but we both know that can be avoided! I agree that heels are a key component in the prevention of frumpiness!

      Do add some purple to your wardrobe. It is a color that looks good on everyone.

  19. October 8, 2011 at 1:07 am — Reply

    The boots are wonderful!! I am super jealous 🙂

  20. October 8, 2011 at 4:38 am — Reply

    Purple, Reigned In* (plus midi-length tips) http://t.co/0wEPAyiO via @gritandglamour

  21. October 8, 2011 at 4:52 am — Reply

    I remember the WVW post from last year! I remember admiring your hair – how pretty and shiny! You still look fabulous and I love those boots. Typically, I don’t tend to go midi-length much. However, you make it look tempting!!

  22. October 8, 2011 at 5:44 am — Reply

    Awww! Rocking boots! I love them! 🙂

  23. October 8, 2011 at 6:13 am — Reply

    I adore midi lengths, and you look absolutely amazing!

  24. October 8, 2011 at 9:06 am — Reply

    STUNNING girl..WOW!
    Those boots are BEYOND gorgeous. Love them both ways featured….
    Hope you have a great weekend.

  25. October 9, 2011 at 1:04 pm — Reply

    I’m loving those boots V! What a nice pop of color for fall.

    • October 10, 2011 at 12:46 pm — Reply

      Thanks, Lauren! Hope you are well!

  26. October 9, 2011 at 3:57 pm — Reply

    I love purple on you, but what I can’t stop looking at is your hair in the first shot!!! Stunning!

    Plus those are some serious sexy boots lady! Hope all is good with you koukla! I finally ventured over to the dark side and signed up to Twitter! Shock horror!

    Have an awesome week ahead!

    • October 10, 2011 at 12:46 pm — Reply

      Yeeehaw! Following you on Twitter, darling!

  27. October 9, 2011 at 4:14 pm — Reply

    love the boots! So amazing! I follow u!
    pass to my blog and follow me too 😀

  28. October 9, 2011 at 10:27 pm — Reply

    You look amazing, that dress is very flattering. The midi length is certainly growing on me as I just found a beautiful vintage skirt in great condition and feels so pretty. Thanks for the tips!

  29. October 10, 2011 at 6:21 am — Reply

    haha really cool. well purple is an awesome colour it should be purple day everyday! 🙂 can you tell its my favorite color? I love both looks i especially love that you paired up that pretty black dress with the amazing purple boots and scarf 🙂 lovely


  30. October 10, 2011 at 9:55 am — Reply

    Those boots are flippin’ fantastic. I love how you styled them both times. Purple is such an amazing compliment to black. You look gorgeous! thanks for the tips!

  31. October 10, 2011 at 12:51 pm — Reply

    Thank you all for your sweet comments! Just popped out to all of your blogs and it’s nice to see old friends and new faces!

  32. October 10, 2011 at 4:05 pm — Reply

    Thank you! RT @cameronmiquelon: Stevie Nicks ain't got nuthin' on Ms. V werd: WVW: Purple, Reigned In* http://ow.ly/6SGN8

  33. October 10, 2011 at 4:20 pm — Reply

    Thanks for sharing, Heather! RT @thestyleconfess: Purple, Reigned In* (plus midi-length tips) http://ow.ly/6SGN8

  34. October 12, 2011 at 3:16 pm — Reply

    Fabulous boots and fabulous color for Fall. Thanks for sharing!

  35. […] Grit & Glamour: What V wore: purple, reigned in* (plus midi-length tips). […]

  36. October 13, 2011 at 3:45 pm — Reply

    Thank you for the great tips! I’m definitely gonna keep them in mind!



  37. […] Grit & Glamour: What V wore: purple, reigned in* (plus midi-length tips). […]

  38. October 13, 2011 at 6:47 pm — Reply

    Congrats on being selected for IFB’s link roundup this week! I love love love those boots!

  39. October 13, 2011 at 10:09 pm — Reply

    Fantastic look!

    Thank you so much for including my post into Links a la Mode this week!

    Best, Jenny


  40. […] Grit & Glamour: What V wore: purple, reigned in* (plus midi-length tips). […]

  41. […] Grit & Glamour: What V wore: purple, reigned in* (plus midi-length tips). […]

  42. October 22, 2011 at 10:34 am — Reply

    Boots are really chic, love the color. Your hair wavy is really pretty.

  43. October 22, 2011 at 2:36 pm — Reply

    WVW: Purple, Reigned In* (plus midi-length tips) http://t.co/kE6bS6MQ via @gritandglamour

  44. October 25, 2011 at 2:45 pm — Reply

    Hey, lovelies, thanks so much for your comments and shares and STUMBLES…gah! Amazing!

  45. October 31, 2011 at 5:26 am — Reply

    A friend of mine gave me a link to your blog.
    Love your style…love your writing too!

    Cheers, (all the way from the Netherlands)

    • October 31, 2011 at 10:15 pm — Reply

      Thank you, Gigi, and welcome to G&G! So nice to have you. I do hope you will visit again soon.

      • November 1, 2011 at 4:02 am — Reply

        Hello V.

        Oh I will be visiting you for sure!

        Have a nice day!


  46. […] Grit & Glamour: What V wore: purple, reigned in* (plus midi-length tips). […]

  47. March 30, 2012 at 9:33 am — Reply

    Thanks for a wonderful advice. Your post is helpful. You look glamorous in purple!!! Your boots are really chic Love it!!

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