WIW: hard edge with skirted leggings

Angie's ensemble, "Hard Edge with a Soft Touch" is one that stuck in my mind. It's a mostly black look, with some softness added with color or feminine style. I recalled it today, as I put together this outfit. Encouraged by Torontogirl on my thread here, I not only wore the controversial skirted leggings again, but I am posting the outfit for you here. ;)

The outfit (worn to work--yes, as in, skirted leggings to work): Black knit tunic with ghost horse print in shades of gray and asymmetric hem and seams (made by me); black skirted leggings (Eileen Fisher); light gray scarf; black distressed suede tall boots (Donald J. Pliner, Devi 2); long black coat (Gallery); espresso and black satchel (Joy Gryson, Natalie).

I had planned to wear my long gray cardigan over this outfit, but I didn't like the look. And I didn't want to cover up the tunic so much. So I went with the scarf for warmth instead.

Thanks for looking! And, my joking about controversy notwithstanding, I welcome your thoughts and suggestions!

This post is also published in the youlookfab forum. You can read and reply to it in either place. All replies will appear in both places.


  • dashielle (Ann) replied 5 years ago

    You are my hero Sharan, seriously. This is how I love to dress these days,Mao we are he sisterhood of the hard edge skirted leggings! Rock on!

  • Firecracker replied 5 years ago

    High five, Ann! Thanks for your encouragement--and inspiration.

  • Dixie replied 5 years ago

    It looks good, it seriously looks like part of your tunic. The layers are really fluid.

  • Joy replied 5 years ago

    I want to stay out of the skirted leggings debate as I have not tried them, but I like this outfit on you. The star for me is the gorgeous tunic. You should be a designer!

  • Jeanie replied 5 years ago

    Great execution of hard edge with a soft touch.  That tunic is rockin'!  The way you style your skirted leggings is really working. 

  • Firecracker replied 5 years ago

    Thanks, Dixie!

    Joy, LOL! I don't want to debate, either. Thanks for the tunic love. I really like this piece, too. I thought the fabric was so cool, and I felt it was a great match with this asymmetrical tunic pattern from The Sewing Workshop.

  • Peri replied 5 years ago

    LOVE that tunic. Add it to my list, okay?

    I like the leggings on you. For some reason they seem a little longer than others I've seen...they look more like a real skirt. I'm staying out of the real discussion on them too, but I think you look great here. As usual!

  • Deb replied 5 years ago

    Like Joy and Peri, I chose to stay out of the overly discussed skirted legging debate, but I have to say you have given them a 'wow' factor here. Love this look on you....great styling and impressive new bag Firecracker.

  • Firecracker replied 5 years ago

    Thanks Jeanie and Peri!
    Looking at my photos today, I felt like the outfit looks simply like a skirt, tunic, and heavy tights. I realize the skirt on these leggings is not too much shorter than what I might wear with opaque tights. That factor contributes to my comfort in them. And I think the skirt is relatively longish on me because I actually sized up from my usual Eileen Fisher size (and took in the side seams on the skirt).

  • Firecracker replied 5 years ago

    Thank you, DEB. I think the bag is destined to see a lot of use.

  • Janet replied 5 years ago

    I am, again, seriously impressed with your design/seamstress skills! Totally fab tunic, and you are one of the people inspiring me to consider the Skirted Leggings of Controversy. :-D

  • approprio replied 5 years ago

    I too chose to skirt the butt vest controversy (see what I did there?) but these really do work for you. 

    And now we have to talk about that spectacular tunic! What is that fabric and where did you get it from? How did you topstitch the white contrast on the seams? I need nerdy details!

  • Firecracker replied 5 years ago

    haha, Janet--thanks!
    Approprio, too funny. Okay, the details: I got the fabric from marcytilton.com, a couple of years ago. It's a cotton knit, a white base fabric overprinted with black and the print, so it's kind of stiff even after the fair amount of washing it has seen. The pattern called for a zipper down the back. Instead, I flatlocked near the two edges, using a thick, variegated cotton thread in shades of gray and ivory, in the needles of my serger (overlocker) and then sewed the seam so that the two rows of flatlocking were adjoining each other, mimicking the zipper idea. I flatlocked the asymmetrical sideseams as well, and I used the same topstitching thread in my sewing machine for the hems on the tunic and sleeves.

  • approprio replied 5 years ago

    Ah cheers, that all makes sense. Beautifully done, good job!

  • Elizabeth P replied 5 years ago

    Oh my goodness, this is fantastic. Just fantastic. Probably one of my favourites on you. That tunic steals the show, sheer genius how you dealt with the zipper.

    You seriously make me want to get my sewing machine out!

  • replied 5 years ago

    I am seriously in love with that tunic! Thanks for providing the pattern link, I just pinned it :) I'm guessing you used that awesome Babylock Evolution to sew it with :). I to think the skirt on the leggings is spot on for length and I think you did right sizing up and then taking in. Love it. Love it all!

  • Summer replied 5 years ago

    I'm watching these skirted leggings threads with interest, and I have to say that the look is growing on me.  Your outfit is so cohesive that I am not noticing the individual components, except for that  beautiful print on the tunic, echoed by your scarf, and the contrast seaming.  The whole outfit is just stunning.

  • UmmLila replied 5 years ago

    Works beautifully. Your comment in an earlier thread about treating the skirt of the leggings as an extra layer and not a mini skirt as such seems to be the key to this look.

  • kerry replied 5 years ago


  • shiny replied 5 years ago


  • Kristin L replied 5 years ago

    What a great look! Your tunic looks amazing and it goes great with your skirted leggings. 

  • Firecracker replied 5 years ago

    Thank you for all your nice thoughts!
    Elizabeth, I'm so flattered--thank you.
    Diane, yup, you're right about the machine. It worked beautifully. 

    UmmLila, it's funny, but with this outfit I didn't feel like I was following my own "extra layer" philosophy--it seems more skirt-like--and yet I liked how it looked.

  • Catnip replied 5 years ago

    Great look!  Not only do you look fabulous in the skirted leggings, but the tunic is outstanding.  Inspirational!  You are very talented.

  • Angie replied 5 years ago

    You DO wear these skirted leggings to perfection, Sharan. Killer. And I LOVE the new bag. Rock on. xo

  • gryffin replied 5 years ago

    Firecracker and Dashielle add me to the list of the traveling skirted leggings!!  Love the tunic and how you styled them.  Just fabulous.  I wore mine to work yesterday with the EF long tweed jacket and ugg cortonas. 

  • unfrumped replied 5 years ago

    Tunic print is beyond fab.
    I DO think the skirt part appears not quite as mini the way you've sized and altered it( thanks for the inside scoop- I wonder if that might be the solution for some that would really like to makd these work. I bought an AT skirt in Tall recently that worked).
    Looks just great!

  • merwoman replied 5 years ago

    Genuis!! The tunic is to die for - and you look incredible in the skirted leggings!

  • rachylou replied 5 years ago

    The tunic is gorgeous. It's incredible how well you do the skirted legging.

  • Windchime replied 5 years ago

    You had me at "ghost horse print" and "asymmetric hem and seams!" I absolutely adore your elegant, arty tunic. This is one of my favorite skirted leggings outfits I've seen. I really like how the asymmetric hem of the tunic blurs the horizontal line between tunic and skirt. Great boots and bag, too.

  • Vicki replied 5 years ago

    Firecracker, I'd say you did a fabulous job turning that ensemble into a wonderful winter outfit.

    You wear the skirted leggings well and since I don't own a pair, I can imagine that they are super comfortable and they certainly fit the bill in making your work outfits stylish and fun.

  • Runcarla replied 5 years ago


  • Suz replied 5 years ago

    This looks amazing on you! (Sobs quietly to self).  

    Truly wonderful. Though I am glad you see that it looks more "skirt" like here (and still totally works) because that is what my eye sees also. I honestly don't think it was the skirt vs. "extra layer" thing that was the problem for me, ultimately. It was something else entirely, possibly something that can't be easily analyzed or defined. Oh, and the length of mine probably also contributed. ;) 

    But one thing that really contributes to the way this work is that amazing pattern and the brilliant way you have handled the construction of this piece. The long vertical and asymmetrical lines draw the eye and make us look at that rather than the (much less noticeable) horizontal lines of the "skirt." It's really stunning on you. 

  • Firecracker replied 5 years ago

    gryffin, your outfit sounds fantastic. I would happily accept your wardrobe, from the sound of it.

    unfrumped, good thinking. I was disappointed when the AllSaints pair with the knee-length ruched skirt was sold out. I think those would have been my ideal. UmmLila has them, I believe. I keep thinking I need to just make some, but I don't know that I really want another pair, or if I did, what color would be useful for me.

    Suz, thanks for your kind thoughts. And I thought of you, as I was trying to fill in my neckline again, here with another scarf!

  • shevia replied 5 years ago

    Love the MBM tunic! You wear this look beautifully!

  • Deborah replied 5 years ago

    This looks amazing on you Firecracker!  The length of your skirted leggings appears to be touch longer than what I have seen on others?  That seems to be the deal breaker for me.  I love the skirted leggings but not when the skirt is too short.  You look Fab.

  • Beth Ann replied 5 years ago

    You look terrific -- the tunic is unique and a great pairing for the leggings.  This look is completely you, and is proof that sewing skills can up the fashion quotient!

  • Karie replied 5 years ago

    You wear those skirted leggings to perfection!

  • AJ replied 5 years ago

    I was wondering why your skirt seemed longer than others...you sized up. I like this length for the skirted leggings.

    This tunic is amazing! Do you get impatient to finish a piece?

  • citygirldc replied 5 years ago

    This is one "cool" outfit. Edgy cool. Loving the skirt leggings. I may have to try this look.

  • Firecracker replied 5 years ago

    AJ, yes, I am an impatient sewer. I like to projects that are quick to make.

  • lyn67 replied 5 years ago

    I love this! Trying to analyse: monochromatic dark look with a splash of longitudinal bright  graphic pattern for a focal point (and assimetric hem-for even more subtle interest) and  only revealing a few inches of the so said "skirt"+ soft looking long flat boots(so, no structure anywhere).

    Wow, again for your desing and sewing skills. Are you on etsy at least?:-)

  • lyn67 replied 5 years ago

    I love this! Trying to analyse if that helps: monochromatic dark look with a splash of longitudinal bright  graphic pattern for a focal point (and assimetric hem-for even more subtle interest) and  only revealing a few inches of the so said "skirt"+ soft looking long flat boots(so, no structure anywhere).

    Wow, again for your desing and sewing skills. Are you on etsy at least?:-)

  • Firecracker replied 5 years ago

    Lyn, how sweet--thanks for your analysis. No, I'm not on etsy. I just sew for myself. And I teach classes.

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