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A miniskirt or mini is a very short skirt (using "mini" to mean very small).

Minis may be made of cloth (especially denim), leather, rubber or PVC. They may be made more revealing by having slits. They may be very close-fitting or loose; in the latter case, they may be designed so that they can flap up to reveal even more. A loose miniskirt is sometimes called an "easy access skirt" because someone else can easily access what is under the skirt.



Diagram of various skirt lengths

There is no universally accepted definition of a mini. One definition is that the hemline should be at least four inches (10 cm) above the knee. Another is that if you are standing erect then the skirt should be so short that you can reach the hem with your middle fingers (implying at least six inches or 15cm above the knee on an average woman). Thus, large parts of the thighs are revealed. The shortest skirts, barely covering the pelvis, are sometimes called microskirts; they may be brief enough to reveal the gluteal fold.

Measuring the length from the waistband to hem of the skirt is complicated because the waistband may be on the waist, the hips or anywhere in between. However, the distance from the waist to knee for the average woman is of the order of 20 inches (50cm) so a mini that sits on the waist should be no longer than 16 inches (40cm) and is often 14 inches (35cm).

One trick to make such a skirt even sexier is to wear stockings and allow people to glimpse the stocking tops or even parts of the suspenders.

Many minis have no pockets. However, it is common to have pockets; minis made of blue denim to resemble jeans may have two front and two rear pockets like many jeans.


The miniskirt was invented by André Courrèges, a French designer, in the early 1960s. It was popularised, especially in Britain, by Mary Quant, who is said to have invented the word, which is first recorded in 1965. Their revealing nature, often emphasised by kinky boots, was an integral part of the Swinging Sixties, and they were worn by many women through the early 1970s.

Their rise in popularity encouraged a shift from wearing stockings to tights/pantyhose, since in a very short skirt the stocking tops may become visible.

The miniskirt fell out of fashion in the mid-1970s, but has undergone a partial revival since the mid-1980s.

See also

External Links

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