Tight skirt and wide top – creating a casual formal look

by Sylvia

tight skirt lose top

It’s all about Fashion this week in Singapore. Carolina Herrera, Nicolette Dinnigan and Hussein Chalayan, to name but a few, were in town to show us their fabulous clothes. I had the opportunity to attend a few shows as well as a few other events and I will show you some highlights in the coming weeks.


I have been wanting to create this kind of look for a while, namely to combine a wider top with a tighter skirt. I really like this as a winter look with a wide jumper, but since jumpers are out of the question here in hot Singapore, I had to translate it into a summer version. I opted for this old t-shirt from Zara which is longer and wider in the back than it is in the front. Since I also wanted to show my belt and a bit of waist, I semi tucked the t-shirt which has been a very popular look online.

This kind of look is very on trend right now, namely to combine more structured items (the skirt) with unstructured and oversized (the shirt). It’s also a good way to make your more formal wear more casual and hip. Instead of heels you can also wear this with flats, which takes it to the casual side even more.


It felt like a good modern / casual look for a day event at fashion week. It looked very chic with this new clutch from Unika Designers which can either be rolled or held as a bag.


Of course I still needed too much stuff (like my camera, ipad etc.) so I opted for a more practical red bag instead.

My gel nails added a funky touch to the look.

Later that day I wore the same skirt, but this time combined with my grey checkered top and black and white belt. For even more variations with this skirt you can see it combined with a grey/white silk top here and with a white blouse here.


I especially enjoyed wearing the top look which made me feel on trend, yet comfortable and casual.

Have you experimented with this look where you combine something structured (tighter) wih something unstructured (wider and loser)?


Skirt, Donna Karan, t-shirt Zara (old), shoes Max & Co, Bag Unika Designers, belt Tangs, shoes Kenneth Cole

1 lissy

I really like both looks but I love the first one. It’s very flattering and I totally agree, it’s hip as well.

2 Paula

I’m doing a lot of boxy on top and narrow on the bottom for the summer too. I started last year, but found my skirts were too full so for this season I made sure I got straighter skirts.


3 Suzanne

I def like the first look the best. The leopard belt makes it for me. Those shoes are kinda hot too : )


4 Rebecca

I may be in the minority but I really don’t care for the first look. It looks a bit
sloppy to me and not very flattering. I prefer the second look.

5 traceyliz65

I am seeing this half tuck look a lot online and while I love it on others, can’t seem to connect with it for myself. I like this look and how you styled it!

6 Rita

I LOVE your skirt with the grey checkered top, Sylvia. That is a beautiful outfit! I just can’t embrace the partial tuck, personally. I’d either tuck or leave it entirely untucked. Because of my small frame, I stay away from wide, slouchy tops for the most part, anyway. I don’t like things too clingy, but I do prefer that they are a little more fitted.

7 Lorraine

Are you the old (as in established! LOL) Rita or the new Rita?

8 Rita

I’m the “old” Rita…LOL!! 🙂

9 Greetje

Aha… so you have a small frame Rita. (Lorraine: the puzzle is nearly finished!)

10 Lorraine

Ha ha! It’s like ‘join the dots’ but with very few dots! It may be some time before old Rita is revealed!

11 Rita

You gals are so funny! I do have a dress with dots on it. 😀

12 Lorraine

Ah! But how many dots?

13 Rita A.

I just changed my display name to Rita A. Hopefully that will help some. 🙂

14 Lorraine

So, let’s get this straight – Rita A is the ‘old’ Rita with the small frame and the shoe fetish!

15 Rita A.

…and tea addiction! 🙂

16 Elaine L.

I’m 61 and definitely think the first look is more up to date and you can pull it off

17 Sylvia

Thanks for leaving your feedback and first comment Elaine!

18 Ann

I really like this red skirt! It fits you beautifully and the pleats make it unique. Both looks are good. I adore your yellow and brown sandals!

blue hue wonderland

19 Marie Dowling

LOVE that skirt, it’s so interesting. The colour is a beautiful red too! Marie Dowling, Australia

20 Annette

Sylvia, that’s fabulous and I love both looks!
The first one is a bit trendier and I like the wide+tight mix and especially the colour combination and the yellow touches to it.
Your second look shows your fantastic figure and is a bit more classic.

In both looks your belts play an important role and I like this attention to details and accessories.


21 Sylvia

Thanks Annette. I tried to leave some feedback on your outfit but keep getting errors so am giving up…..

22 Jeannie@gracefully50

Well, there you are in my fav Sylvia’s color! Red!
You’re definitely sporting a trendy look and looking fabulous in it!

23 Alice - Happiness at Mid Life

Love both looks Sylvia. I really like how relaxed the 1st look is. I am always struggling with ways to wear my pencil skirts in a more casual setting. I tend to only wear them for work.


24 Alice - Happiness at Mid Life

Love both looks Sylvia. I am always struggling to put more mileage on my pencil skirts. I tend to wear them for work and not in a more casual setting.


25 Highland Fashionista

I REALLY love that grey and white top. It looks like Dries Van Noten 2 seasons ago….the collection I coveted but couldn’t afford….sigh….

26 Sylvia

thanks. The grey and white is one of my favorite tops. The fabric is a bit 3d and made from a lovely fabric. It feels and looks expensive, yet I got at a super bargain price of $20 and is from an unknown brand called Elsewhere. Sometimes you just get lucky!

27 Mrs C

You couldn’t have done better.. the color is so gorgeous on your skin-tone

MRS JACK OF ALL TRADES (a fashion and life-style blog)

28 Kelly

Hi Sylvia, I love both of these looks. I wear a lot of pencil skirts, and the top look is a great way to go casual with it. It is finally going to be warm this week in Maryland, so I plan to try it out. I also love that this look is great for all figures. I am petite and curvy, and a pencil skirt with loose top is a go-to work look for me.

29 Ofelia

Sylvia you do look modern and casual and the color red suits so well.
I’m looking forward to see your photos of the collections!

30 sara

lovely outfit! I like how the belt ties it all together… Sara

31 Dez Hanna

Cute! I really like the pencil skirt and a wide top. It really has a slimming effect too.

32 Heidi / Frantic But Fabulous

I love both of these looks, but especially the second one. Maybe because I’m also a sucker for black and white prints, but I also think the silhouette of the top is very flattering on you.

33 Greetje

Both looks are very, very nice. I have done the wide on the tight too and like it a lot.
It needs some careful matching though. You have done a terrific job in both cases.
Is that red bag new? Cannot recall seeing it before.
And if you ever come across that black and white belt, please buy it for me (size 90 cm fitting through the loops of jeans) and I will reimburse you with a handsome profit. I have been looking everywhere. Anne Fontaine sells different models now.

34 Sylvia

Thanks! The bag is quite old already and has been featured before like here https://40plusstyle.com/getting-graphical/ and here https://40plusstyle.com/how-to-white-white-pants/
I will keep an eye out for that belt. But this one is quite wide. Does not fit through all loops. The advantage is that you can make it as wide or narrow as you wish.

35 Marie S

I love both looks on you Sylvia. The pencil skirt is gorgeous. I have a red one that I wear a lot but you have given me more ideas on how to wear it…. Hmm! Interesting. Love the red bag too. I think I need more bags. I tend to stick to the same ” safe” few but think I need to branch out a bit. Thanks for the inspiration 🙂

36 Beverly Marquis

Love everything about this!

37 Marianne

I like all the looks, but I like the first one the most, because you are trying something new, so you are getting out of your comfort zone. And I like it when you try new things.

38 Heather

Love both of these looks, Sylvia – especially the first one paired with the red bag. I really like the grey top, it’s gorgeous and looks fabulous with the skirt. OK, I have been avoiding shopping for clothes, time to get out there and choose some new things !
Both pairs of shoes are great, where did you get those ?

39 Sylvia

Thanks! The yellow ones are from Max & Co and the greys from Kenneth Cole (but already a couple of years old…)

40 theresa

I use the boxy top look, mostly with slim jeans, I can do the part tuck in look, but not crazy about it. of your two looks, by far, I love the grey striped and red skirt on you. to me, it looks like more thought went into how it looks, and show’s off your figure so nicely. it is something I would wear if I had a skirt… Ya, I know…get one.

41 Petra

I like the first outfit best. I can’t believe how much use you get out of your yellow/tan shoes! If I bought a pair of yellow sandals I wouldn’t know what to put with them but you seem to find so many outfits to match 😀

42 Marcia

Hi, Silvia, I’m 48 years old, I live in Brazil, at the Amazon, where is extremely hot and humidity all year round. I loved you blog with ideas for womans 40+, can you help me with my luggage for a 15 days trip to Europe next June? How less can I bring with me thinking that I probably won’t have time to do the laundry.

43 Sylvia

Hi Marcia. What you need to do is create a capsule wardrobe so that you can easily mix and match everything you bring. Here are some more tips: https://40plusstyle.com/how-to-pack-for-a-holiday/ and https://40plusstyle.com/how-to-pack-for-a-long-holiday/ and https://40plusstyle.com/how-to-create-wardrobe-capsules-that-work/ Good luck and have lots of fun on your holiday.

Comments on this entry are closed.

{ 2 trackbacks }

Previous post:

Next post: