A while ago there was some discussion on the list on the Hemline index. It's of course also mentioned in EdSpec.

New research from my university finds:

Urban legend has it that the hemline is correlated with the economy. In times of decline, the hemline moves towards the floor (decreases), and when the economy is booming, skirts get shorter and the hemline increases. We collected monthly data on the hemline, for 1921-2009, and evaluate these against the NBER chronology of the economic cycle. The main finding is that the urban legend holds true but with a time lag of about three years. Hence, the current economic crisis predicts ankle length skirts around 2011 and 2012.

Thus, it is found that the economy may predict the hemline, but not the other way around, making it difficult to benefit from this finding, unless maybe one is active in the fashion industry.

Ken Drees writes:

If the recession double dips then we should expect long garments that trail onto the ground after 2012–or at best years of long floor length fashions –maybe fashions that tuck into boots?

And since this is a "recovery" maybe we get a long ankle length fashion in 2011 that has a slit or cutout along the leg line near the ankle–indicating the breather in the economy.


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