What Is a Skater Dress? [And how to wear it the right way!]

You've got your fair share of dresses in your closet. How can you tell, though, if one of them is a skater dress?

What traits distinguish this type of dress from the others?

Skater dresses are the perfect combination of casual and classy. They cut off right above the knee and flare out at the waist.

You can wear skater dresses in any number of ways, including with:

  • Matching accessories
  • Thigh-high boots
  • A leather jacket and sneakers
  • A crisp jacket
  • White sneakers
  • Tights and ankle boots
  • A delicate necklace and earrings
  • Statement heels
  • A denim jacket
  • A contrasting bag
  • Fun woven accessories
  • A big hat
  • Matching strappy sandals
  • A skinny belt

Beautiful blonde woman wearing white dress

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There are variations on the skater dress that you may want to test out, as well as different accessory combinations.

Explore your options to see which version of the skater dress suits you best.

What Is A Skater Dress?

Designers have mainlined several different dress cuts, popularizing a few well-known styles over the years.

The term "skater dress" describes a type of A-line dress. A skater dress fits snugly at the waist and flows out from there, forming the silhouette of the letter "A."

Instead of falling to the floor, though, a skater dress is cut just above the knee.

This means that the wearer will be able to move freely while also retaining an air of elegance.

That said, you can also find skater dresses with cuts below the knee or a little higher on the thigh.

Either way, the A-line cut will give your silhouette a classic hourglass look.

Examples of Skater Dresses

How varied can skater dresses be?

Let's take a gander at some of the styles currently on the market to see what your options are.

It's All In The Name

Young teenage girl in pink dress uses her skates in the park

Skates - or roller blades - aren't essential skater dress accessories, but they do put the versatility of the dresses on display!

This model pairs the move-ability of her skater dress with a flirty flower crown, showing how sporty and sweet looks can easily come together.

But, you don't have to head to the skating rink to wear your skater dress.

Great For Elegant Environments

These dresses look just as good when worn in elegant settings. They're perfect first-date dresses and will be a hit at your next holiday party.

Check out Christie Brinkley at a holiday party in her gorgeous red skater-style dress.

Young fashion caucasian ballerina in red dress

That said, unless you're a professional ballerina, you may want to swap out the pointe shoes for ballet flats.

Fun and Flirty At Standard Length

Footwear aside, skater dresses all typically hit just above your knee. Their necklines, comparatively, will vary.

Smiling beautiful young woman in elegant red dress posing and looking away

This model's dress, for example, has a higher neckline, but it is still fun and flirty.

Hug Your Waistline

Skater dresses are also the ideal dress to wear if you want to show off your curves.

Beautiful woman in white dress

Unlike bodycon dresses, these dresses won't feel tight against your skin. Instead, they'll comfortably flow around your thighs while still showing off your waistline.

Who Likes Short Skirts? We Like Short Skirts!

If you're in an especially flirty mood, you can look for a skater dress that comes up a little higher on the thigh.

Beautiful model in pink dress and sandals posing in a side street

These dresses are still A-line dresses, given the way they flow out from the waist. The shorter style lets you spice up your look, especially if you're headed out for the evening.

Sporty and Classic

Skater dresses pull double-duty as classic date-wear and excellent casual outfits.

Attractive lady wearing red dress posing standing holding leg on pink longboard isolated on pastel beige

You'll just as easily be able to wear your skater dress with a pair of sneakers as you will high heels.

Skater Dresses and Shoulder Coverage

Skater dresses also have variable shoulder coverage.

Young girl in black dress standing with a skateboard

If you want a halter top, you can find one! If you prefer spaghetti straps, they're available.

No matter what your style preference, skater dresses are versatile enough to suit your needs.

How to Wear a Skater Dress

Once you've got a skater dress in your closet, it's time to accessorize.

You can wear your skater dress with several different accessories: matching purses, statement heels, comfy tennis shoes, and more!

It's up to you to decide which of these extras you want to include in your look.

Not sure where to start? Browse through some of the options below to find the look that'll suit you best!

Matching Accessories

For a simple but elegant look, you can always match your accessories to your skater dress.

Woman wearing a black bodycon dress

A simple black skater dress, for example, looks lovely with a pair of polka-dotted shoes and a matching clutch. Play with patterns and textures while choosing your accessories, and you'll quickly find a look that suits you.

Thigh-High Boots

If you're feeling daring, why not play with your footwear?

Goth girl wearing thigh high boots and skater dress

Thigh-high boots draw attention to your legs and can make them look longer (or shorter) depending on where they cap. When paired with a skater dress, you'll take on a confident look that emphasizes your natural beauty.

Leather Jacket and Sneakers

Korean woman wearing a leather jacket, gray shirt, tights, and black mini skirt

What accessories should you look for when you're feeling punk rock?

Skater dresses are versatile additions to any closet. While you can pair them with heels and delicate jewelry, they look just as good when matched with a leather jacket and sneakers. Zip your jacket up or leave it open - either way, the texture of the leather will contrast beautifully with the dress you've chosen to wear.

A Crisp Jacket

Want to wear your skater dress into work? Bracing for a fall day out with your friends?

Happy woman walking in the streets of new york

You can always pair your skater dress with a crisp jacket. These jackets keep you warm while also changing your silhouette. This means you can play with your look while staying comfortable. What's not to love?

White Sneakers

Woman wearing blue floral dress and white sneakers

If you're looking to rebel a little with your skater dress look, or if you want to wear it while on a skateboard, there's no better accessory than white sneakers.

White sneakers contrast beautifully with most skater dresses. They'll also keep your toes safe as you grind the rails.

If you're looking for a style and safety combo, then your sneakers win the accessory battle.

Tights and Ankle Boots

Woman wearing a black floral skater dress and colorful tights

If the weather's turning cold or you're feeling a little creative, you can always accessorize your skater dress look with a pair of colorful tights and ankle boots.

Even opaque, black tights go a long way toward making this look more original. Tights will keep you warm in the winter and will let you express yourself in the summer.

Delicate Necklace and Earrings

Woman wearing skater dress and necklace

If you're looking to accentuate your skater dress look subtly, why not experiment with your jewelry?

When you wear a matching necklace and earring set, you establish aesthetic consistency.

These little details won't take away from the "wow" factor of your dress, but they'll let your personality and sense of style shine through.

Statement Heels

Model woman wearing statement heels and skater dress

If you're looking for a look that blows people's idea of "skater" out of the water, there's no better way to do so than with a pair of statement heels.

Whether your heels are dotted with rhinestones or are chunky and tall, statement heels will help you stand out in a crowd.

They'll also transform your skater dress look into a look that's perfect for a night out with the girls.

Denim Jacket

Woman wearing denim jacket and skater dress

The denim jacket is coming back, and for a good reason. These jackets are not only comfortable, but they add casual style to your skater dress look.

If you're the DIY type, you can even iron patches onto your denim jacket to drive home a combination of comfort and punk.

Contrasting Bag

Woman wearing a gorgeous black skater dress and yellow bag

Nothing attracts the eye quite like contrast does. That doesn't mean, though, that you have to go all out if you want to spice up your skater dress look.

For a bit of simple contrast, consider using a bag that's not the same color as your dress.

It doesn't have to be on the opposite side of the color wheel, but the shock of color will draw attention and make your look all the more enjoyable.

Fun Woven Accessories

Woman wearing a blue floral dress and wearing a woven bag

Want to add a simple but fun accessory to your skater dress look?

Woven accessories, like bracelets and anklets, bring the beach straight to you. While you'll find woven accessories in all styles, you'll always be reminded of warm summer days and the ocean breeze in your hair.

Try to find hemp or other woven accessories that are waterproof, just in case you want to leave them on when you get in the pool.

A Big Hat

Woman wearing a skater dress and a sunhat

Want to diversify your look quickly? Hats not only change your silhouette, but they add a punch of personality to your look.

Sunhats have come back over the past decade.

Nowadays, if you want to add a statement piece to your outfit without breaking into your jewelry box, a big hat will do the trick.

Match your hat to the color of your dress or go traditional with a woven look. (Like Doja Cat did at the Grammys in 2014.)

Either way, you'll bring new "oomph!" to your skater dress look.

Matching Strappy Sandals

Woman wearing a black floral dress and strappy heels

As the weather warms, you'll want to leave your thicker shoes behind in favor of a pair of elegant sandals.

Strappy sandals that match the skater dress you're wearing not only carry the color of your look, but they give you an extra comfort boost as you make your way downtown.

That said, we don't recommend getting on a skateboard while wearing sandals unless you're well-practiced. The last thing you want to do is stub a toe while trying to look cute!

A Skinny Belt

Woman wearing a black skater dress and a gold thin belt

While a skater dress's A-line cut will already emphasize your waist - or the part of your body you want others to believe is your waist - you can further accentuate your curves with some accessories.

Skinny belts won't draw attention away from the rest of your outfit. They will, however, let you play with your silhouette.

Depending on where you place your skinny belt, you'll be able to shape your outline as you please.

Skater dresses are the perfect, versatile outfits. Why not add one to your closet and see how you can spice up your look?

Want more like this? Check out Inside Dakota Johnson’s Closet: Building A Capsule Wardrobe With The Basics.

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