Male Box: “Ruffle” Some Feathers

The holiday season is fully upon us with its endless swirl of chic cocktail parties and black tie galas. Right around the middle of November when black velvet chinchilla chubbys and golden Russian sable stroller coats are coming out of cold storage, women everywhere are are staring at stacks of invitations and lamenting that they have “nothing to wear.” What to do?

You could troop out your trusty old LBD and devise new ways to accessorize it or you can resolve right here and now to stand out from the all black pack. The key to making a headturning entrance this season is volume – in new and unexpected ways. Ruffles in all their permutations impart femininity to your every movement. Valentino Garavani, the Last Emperor of high fashion, knew this and always featured ruffles in his evening clothes.  The current Valentino collection offers a long sleeved evening dress with tiered ruffles in silk chiffon. The silhouette may be classic Valentino, but the bodice and sheer sleeves make this dress completely contemporary. What could be more perfect for the post-modern feminist fashionista?

If you normally tend toward the clean lines of Calvin Klein or Narciso Rodruguez for evening, why not consider a simple perfect column of an evening sheath featuring a peplum of layered ruffles from Thomas Meier for Bottega Veneta?  It’s the perfect blending of chic minimalism and ancient regime excess. What could be more festive?

Viktor & Rolf are anything but subtle and neither is their take on the black evening dress for this season.   Featuring asymmetrically placed ruffles of various sizes that are made of such disparate materials a silk satin and sheared mink, this is the perfect dress when you need to make a serious entrance. If you like to shake things up a bit, why not go for broke?

You may never have heard of Sarah Burton before she designed the current Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding dress, but everyone in fashion is watching – and admiring – how she is bringing her own sensibilities to Alexander McQueen. Her Fall/Winter 2012 collection featured many variations on volume. The dress that I found the most interesting was vaguely Elizabethan in its embellishment but fully futuristic in its silhouette. The exquisite collar and magnificently tiered ruffles will be sure to ruffle the feathers of any self-professed fashionistas you might encounter while wearing this.

Roberto Cavalli is widely regarded as the Master of Fashion Excess.  Too much is definitely not enough when it comes to his designs. Why not use ruffles to edge ruffles – and do it all in oversize animal prints? The Cavalli woman is no shrinking violet and her clothes command as much – if not more- attention than she does.  If you’re the kind of girl who likes to blend in with the crowd, then this is not the dress for you.

No matter what you wear to this season’s social events, have fun with your wardrobe and be confident in your choices. Draw inspiration from the daring designs of your favorite fashion editor’s favorite designers, but make the season’s trends entirely your own. Wear trends in the way that makes you most comfortable and you’ll have irrepressible confidence. You’ll be the belle of the ball – even if the ball is just the office holiday party.

Photos:
Valentino Fall 2012 RTW
Viktor & Rolf Fall 2012 RTW
Bottega Veneta Fall 2012 RTW
Alexander McQueen Fall 2012 RTW
Roberto Cavalli Fall 2012 RTW

– Joseph Ungoco

Image Layout: Second City Style

 

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