Modern Living: The Long Way Out

All through the summer the questions loomed over the fashion horizon: Whither the midi? Would autumn, and the return to real clothes, find women taking the downward drift in stride, their minis in mothballs, their legs in hiding? Designers scoffed at alternatives, and so-called smart stores had little else in stock. But October is here and almost gone, and only the leaves are falling; skirts are just about as short as ever. All told, the mid-calf hemline seems clearly a long-lost proposition.

The verdict is nationwide. New York's Daily News, whose pollsters have...