Is the Micro Mini back for good?
Recently, the fashion world has seen a rather shocking resurgence of the Y2K style, with trucker hats, scarves, slogan cropped T-shirts and pleated skirts. However, the trend that has had the biggest comeback is the micro mini. Specifically, the ultra-cropped skirts and shorts of the early 2000s have made numerous appearances on recent catwalks and on social media, making it clear that that revived hem is not going anywhere, anytime soon.
Although they were immensely popular in the early days, 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 wore them to. the beach to display their curvaceous silhouettes. At the time, the hem of the short shorts was six inches above the knee and featured a high waisted fit. Given the conservative nature of traditional 1950s dress codes, these shorts quickly became the object of backlash.
Despite this setback, in the 60s the ultra-short hem only increased 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 in 1957. There, Quant attracted a large young clientele, as she produced modern styles for women. young women in search of sexual and societal liberation. Among these models were the infamous mini-skirt and a style of shorts that had a maximum crotch of around two inches, later dubbed “hotpants” by a fashion publication in 1970.
Such short bottoms did not become so popular until the early 2000s. When they burst onto the scene, the hems somehow became taller and the belts still. lower. Never before in the history of fashion has such an excess leg and stomach been exposed at the same time. For example, in her 2000 music video for her single “Spinning Around”, Australian pop superstar Kylie Minogue donned a pair of gold mini-shorts that made the headlines and are now on display behind bulletproof glass in the Melbourne Arts Center. Likewise, at the 2001 MTV Video Music Awards, Britney Spears wore a tiny pair of metallic hot pants for her iconic performance of “I’m a Slave 4 U”, complete with a huge yellow boa constrictor. A year later, Christina Aguilera also let her jaw drop when she paired a halter scarf-like top with a denim skirt that was roughly the width of a belt.
With the Spring / Summer 2022 season, we are witnessing a comeback of these micro mini socks. Perhaps the most enthusiastic endorsement for this trend has come from Miu Miu and Blumarine, both of which were designed by influential Russian designer Lotta Volkova. On the catwalk for Prada’s little sister brand, models donned ultra-low skirts with extremely high hems that took viewers straight to the red carpets of the early years. At the same time, Blumarine produces several pairs of denim hotpants whose lengths have not been seen for ten to twenty years.
Emilio Pucci was another brand to return to the Y2K trend, sending models to the runway in low rise shorts featuring the intricate and vibrant designs that are the signature of the house. Finally, a nod to the house’s collections of the 90s and early 2000s by Karl Lagerfeld, Chanel also presented several pairs of micro mini shorts. Paired with matching tweed jackets and bralettes, these hotpants have not only played on the brand’s classics but also on styles of decades past.
Given the overwhelming prevalence of micro mini bottoms on this season’s catwalks, along with their historical significance, it looks like such short hemlines are here to stay. The astonishing endorsement of these short styles by several of the most respected fashion brands more or less ensures their proliferation on social media and in the fashion world at large. So, after this season, it’s fair to say that a new era is dawning for the micro mini and its historic evolution will continue into the 2020s.