Is The Micro Mini Back for Good?

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Recently, the fashion world has seen a rather shocking resurgence of Y2K style, complete with trucker hats, scarf tops, cropped slogan tees, and pleated skirts. However, the trend that has had the most prominent return is the micro mini. Specifically, the ultra-short skirts and shorts of the early 2000s have made numerous appearances on recent runways and on social media, making it clear that this revived hemline isn’t going anywhere, anytime soon.

Although they were immensely popular in the early aughts, the micro mini style has its roots in the 1950s. Dubbed “short shorts,” the style became notable when glamorous Hollywood actresses and pin-up models would wear them to the beach to flaunt their curvaceous figures. At the time, the short shorts’ hemline sat at six inches above the knee and featured a high-waisted cut. Considering the conservative nature of traditional ‘50s dress codes, these shorts quickly became subject to intense backlash.

Despite this pushback, in the swinging ’60s, the uber-short hemline only rose in popularity. This was aided by Mary Quant, a Welsh fashion designer who opened her boutique Bazaar on King’s Road in London’s Chelsea neighborhood in 1957. There, Quant attracted a large, youthful clientele, as she produced modern styles for young women seeking sexual and societal liberation. Among these designs were the infamous mini skirt and a style of shorts that had a maximum inseam of roughly two inches, later dubbed “hotpants” by a fashion trade publication in 1970.

Such short bottoms didn’t see such widespread notoriety again until the early 2000s. When they did burst back onto the scene, the hemlines became, somehow, higher and the waistbands even lower. Never before in fashion history had there been such an excess of leg and midriff exposed at the same time. For instance, in her 2000 music video for her hit single “Spinning Around,” Australian pop superstar Kylie Minogue donned a pair of gold micro mini shorts that made headlines and are now exhibited behind bulletproof glass at the Melbourne Arts Center. Likewise, at the 2001 MTV Video Music Awards, Britney Spears sported a pair of tiny metallic hot pants for her iconic performance of “I’m a Slave 4 U,” along with massive yellow boa constrictor. Just a year later, Christina Aguilera also dropped jaws and made VMAs red carpet history when she paired a scarf-like halter top with a denim skirt that was roughly the width of a belt.

With the Spring/Summer 2022 season, we have witnessed a sweeping return of these micro mini bottoms. Perhaps the most enthusiastic endorsement of this trend came from Miu Miu and Blumarine collections, both of which were styled by influential Russian stylist, Lotta Volkova. On the runway for Prada’s little sister brand, models donned ultra-low-rise skirts with extremely high hemlines that brought viewers directly back to the red carpets of the early aughts. At the same time, Blumarine produced several pairs of denim hotpants, the lengths of which we haven’t seen for ten to twenty years.

Emilio Pucci was yet another brand to return to the Y2K trend, sending models down the runway in low-rise shorts featuring the intricate and vibrant patterns that are signature to the house. Finally, in a nod to the house’s ’90s and early 2000s collections by Karl Lagerfeld, Chanel also showcased several pairs of micro mini shorts. Paired with matching tweed jackets and bralettes, these hotpants not only played on the brand’s classics, but also the styles from decades gone-by.

Considering the overwhelming prevalence of micro mini bottoms on this season’s runways, as well as their historical prominence, it would seem as though such short hemlines are here to stay. The astounding endorsement of these short styles from several of fashion’s most well-respected brands has more-or-less ensured their proliferation on social media and in the wider fashion world. Thus, after this season, it’s fair to say that a new era is dawning for the micro mini look and its historical evolution will continue into the 2020s.

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createdAt:Tue, 05 Oct 2021 16:23:09 +0000
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