By Jessie Sawyer
Fashion bloggers and journalists have published mixed reports about whether there's any truth to economist George Taylor's 1920s Hemline Index theory that rising hemlines mean a rising economy and that longer skirt-length signifies a dropping market.
But BlogHer, Inc. and Westfarms Mall parent company Taubman Centers found that 47 percent of women that participated in their joint 2013 BlogHer-Taubman Style Study in August "see light at the end of the tunnel" economically and predict “above the knee” hemlines will be in this fall, according to a press release.
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While the study does not prove the Hemline Index theory, it does explore the question, as well as other women's fall fashion predictions and trends.
The companies surveyed 1,609 women 18 and older on various style questions.
Regarding hemlines, respondents were asked about whether they saw "ankle-dusting maxi skirts predicting 'uncertain times ahead,'" below-the-knee skirts "indicating 'cautious optimism,'" above-the-knee skirts "implying 'light at the end of the tunnel'" or "micro-mini" skirts "proclaiming 'good news ahead'" in the fall fashion forecast.
"Millennials were four times more likely than Baby Boomers to predict a micro-mini skirt trend for the fall" and the most economic optimism, according to the press release highlighting the results. On the flip side, 10 percent of survey respondents projected "ankle-dusting maxi skirts to be the trend this fall," contrary to runway displays thus far, according to the press release.
The style study addressed more than hemlines. Women in the younger Millenial generation are the generation most interested in "every kind of wearable tech, from glasses to watches to clothing," according to the survey results. The majority of female survey participants – 74 percent – "rely solely on their smartphone to tell the time," the press release states.
"Wearable technology is hot on the tech scene, but hasn’t yet crossed over to fashion accessory," Blog-Her and Taubman Centers concluded in a statement, adding that 41 percent of women "would wear a fitness tracker" as part of the "Quantified Self movement."
Let's Get Some Shoes!
How many pairs of shoes do you own and how often do you buy new ones?
According to the survey results "one in eight women has more than 50 pairs of shoes" and 43 percent of survey responders own 20 to 49 pairs.
Purses: the Weight on Our Shoulders
It's no surprise that women like their purses. But how much are you willing to carry in your bag?
The study found that "one third of women carry a purse weighing in at six pounds or more." Women living in the Northeast were "three times more likely" to carry a purse weighing 10 pounds or more than women in the Northwest, according to the press release.
Evening Wear and Undergarments
While much of fall fashion involves popular style trends to wear out and about, how much thought do you put into undergarments and what you wear to bed?
Two-thirds of women who took the survey said they "wear 'comfy stuff' like flannel or sweats to bed," whereas "22 percent sleep 'in the buff,' including just as many Boomers as Millennials," according to the press release.
As for undergarment trends, thirty-eight percent of survey takers favored wearing "bikini briefs," but thongs were more popular for Millennials, according to the study.
You can review the entire study by clicking on the link provided.
What fall fashion items do you like and what women's style trends are you noticing in the West Hartford community for all age groups?