Sure, we all know what basics professional women are supposed to have in their closets, but if you’re buying one for the first time or replacing one you’ve worn into the ground, it can be a pain to find exactly the right incarnation in stores. In “The Hunt,” we search the stores for a basic item that every woman should have.
Ladies, here’s something we haven’t talked about in far too long: which are the most stylish pencil skirts for work? I’ve heard the J.Crew No. 2 pencil skirt is on the upswing (reviewers note it’s more similar to older versions of the skirt), and the old reader favorite, Halogen’s pencil skirt, is still getting positive reviews even after the design change — but otherwise it seems very much to be an open field right now. Do you prefer pencil skirts in solid neutrals or suiting fabrics — or do you find colorful pencil skirts to be an easy way to inject fun to your working wardrobe? Do you prefer midi skirts or A-line skirts these days? Which are your favorites?
We’ve rounded up some of our favorites on the market right now — and ooh boy are there some good sales. First, some specialty groups:
- Hall of Famers (the skirts we’ve admired year after year): Limited (luxe), J.Crew (No. 2) — and an honorable mention to the Halogen skirt, which at one point was so well-loved that readers just called it “The Skirt” — it’s still highly rated on Nordstrom but the design has changed
- Under $60: Anne Klein, Halogen (suiting), Loft, Shabby Apple, Target, Lands’ End, Calvin Klein,
- Decent sale: Armani (wool, 60%), Halogen (striped, 65%), Halogen (suiting, 40%), Brooks Brothers (60%), Shabby Apple (50% off), Armani (50% off),
- Matching blazer available: Halogen (suiting), Classiques Entier, Anne Klein, Limited (luxe), Lands’ End, Target, Basler, Elie Tahari, T Tahari, Calvin Klein,
- Machine washable: Eileen Fisher, Limited (luxe), Boden, Lands’ End (ponte), Lands’ End (wear to work),
- Petite: Halogen, Eileen Fisher, Limited (luxe), J.Crew (No. 2), Talbots (plus and petite plus), Lands’ End (ponte), Lands’ End (wear to work), Ann Taylor (tan/khaki), Ann Taylor (coral), Loft (slit), Loft (leaf pattern), Eileen Fisher (knit), Halogen (solids & prints), Anne Klein (black & gray), BOSS (coral), BOSS (stretch wool), Nic +Zoe (stretch-twill print), Calvin Klein (gold/white houndstooth), Ellen Tracy (black or print), Banana Republic (navy), Banana Republic (black), Boden (cotton ottoman), Talbots (seasonless wool, also in petite plus)
- Tall: Limited (luxe), J.Crew (No. 2), Boden, Ann Taylor (coral twill), Ann Taylor (diamond print), The Limited (Collection), The Limited (stretch twill), The Limited (wide waistband), Banana Republic (pinstripe), Banana Republic (tweed), Banana Republic (gray or blue), Boden (wool blend), Boden (cotton ottoman), Boden (colorblock or print),
- Plus sizes: Talbots, Eloquii, Vince Camuto, Sejour, Louben, Basler (black), Calvin Klein (black), Talbots (seasonless wool), Talbots (cotton blend), Talbots (pinstripe), Talbots (floral),
- Cusp sizes: Classiques Entier (0-16), Lafayette 148 New York (2-18), J.Crew (up to 16), Talbots (up to 20), Ann Taylor (up to 18), Lands’ End (ponte, 2-18), Lands’ End (2-16), Brooks Brothers (up to 16), Loft (00-18, slit), Target (2-18)
- Maternity: ASOS (gray), Isabella Oliver (ponte, five colors), Rosie Pope (black), Eva Alexander (brown), Maternal America (houndstooth), Rachel Zoe (blue), A Pea in the Pod (black), A Pea in the Pod (print/texture), Ripe (four colors), Old Navy (jersey, up to XXL), Duo (maternity plus) (check out our guide if you’re building a maternity wardrobe for work)