Friday, February 19, 2010

Springs New Ruffle Loose and Sophisticated: 4 Ways to Wear It

From Denny: The weather is starting to cooperate and turn a bit warmer, melting all that annoying snow here and there. Your mind turns to "maybe I can wear real clothes now instead of piling on the winter gear." The clothing trend this Spring is frilly! Not to worry, it isn't weird or too girly but all grown up and sophisticated is the fashion take designers took on ruffles this year.

Designers have been playing with fabric like your toddler does with toys and having great fun. The result of their creativity is the modern update for ruffles is that the ruffle is longer, looser, even twisted and turned, creating very relaxed and easy to wear styles. For the unexpected are those nonperfect puckers that come across as elegant. The beauty of this modern take on ruffles is their versatility so you can dress them up or down: to work or on the weekends with jeans.

4 Styles of Frilly this season

Fashion-forward frills

Normally, the traditional ruffle is so excessive in its flourish that it is not considered work appropriate. However, the new abstract take this season on the ruffle makes it wearable to the office. If you are in a conservative environment with menswear-inspired as the rule this year's ruffle can give you a bit of a feminine twist for your wardrobe.

This new take on ruffles are larger folds that lie flat but add depth and movement yet without feeling frilly. Asymmetrical layers like these ruffles help soften structured suits and skirts and carve out some curves in all the right places. Make sure to add a belt to tame that possible volume on cardigans and blouses.

Featured in the video: Ruffled wrap top, $49, Loehmann's; Tiered ruffle skirt, $89.90,

Pretty and preppy

Sometimes, casual wear can look just too plain vanilla and uninspired. This season focus on smaller details and update some of your casual cotten and easy knits to give them some flair with visual interest. Those tiny elements of texture on a simple T-shirt or a menswear button-down shirt with a tuxedo-like ruffle trim can do the trick without resorting to accessories.

Even this season's accessories are getting into the act with ruffles, puckers and pleats! Remember to keep your total look in mind and moderate just how much you embrace any new trend. A few touches of a good thing often create more stylish impact than too much flourish. Leave the excess to when you come down to visit me in south Louisiana and we blow it out over at the New Orleans Mardi Gras! :)

Featured in the video: Cascading Rose T-shirt, $45;, Slim fit white jeans, $59.90,; Deux lux ruffle handbag, $68,

Trendy tiers

Some of the harsher, edgy and sharply tailored looks like biker jackets, knee-length boots and studded handbags are getting ruffles this season. Even if you might normally wear a very sleek look, a few items from this season's offerings can give your wardrobe that fluid flowing benefit that only a soft item can provide.

These new long layers look easy and modern, pairing well with tough fabrics and sharp tailoring, making you more approachable. Who wants to scare off a possible great mate? :) The reverse is true of the sharply tailored looks: they help balance soft flowing lines, taming a billowy look. I'm a big fan of contrast to create balance in a wardrobe. It keeps things interesting and people asking, "Where did you get that?"

Featured in the video: AK Anne Klein Blouse, $29.99,; Faux leather blazer, $24.95,

For children: Look 1 — Kiddo USA ruffle tank, $8,; denim leggings, $18,; Sneakers, $30,; Look 2 — Scooter Brown T-shirt, $7,; denim jacket, $37.50, sequin scarf, $10,; ruffle skirt, $20,; leggings, $9,; Skechers Twinkle Toes sneakers, $39.99,

Dressy and delicate

In the Fall season we embraced structured, architectural styles. Well, this Spring season we all need a breather, something more whimsical and a bit softer. Don't even allow your mind to go to the typed cast vision of ruffles: little girls in pink poufy party dresses. This season ruffles grew up: think more classic muted tones like blush, rose and palest blues. Sophisticated colors build a stage for those perfect subtle details to be a stand out.

Check out how layered ruffles from delicious fabrics like lace and chiffon weave this airy transparency. It's those raw edges that give these vintage-inpsired versions their modernity. Even a trench coat gets cascading edges or a wonderful wrap gifts drama to a very simple classic black dress for that special occasion.

Featured in this video: Ruffle dress, $129,; Silk ruffle trench, $228,

Check out how there are four different ways to wear this season's new take on frilly from style editor Bobbie Thomas who is also author of The Buzz column for In Touch Weekly. Explore with her new ways to embrace this textured trend!

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