Trendspotting | Pleated to Perfection

Giovanna Battagalia in Alaia | Jak & Jil

As I briefly mentioned in a previous post reviewing the new Vena Cava for Aqua line, I’m loving the pleat trend for fall. Although not as prominent or obvious as the leopard prints, faux furs, and red hues that took the runways by storm this season, pleating is a trend that has been popping up on the streets, in new fall lines, and in little details on the runways. For some, the words “pleated skirt” bring on nightmares of hideous middle school uniforms or crazy kilts. However, if done right, this trend can be pulled off beautifully. The key is to look for smaller and more numerous pleats in a gauzy fabric, or look for very subtle pleating on dresses and skirts. Some runways showcased macro draping that mimicked the look of pleats (see Burberry Prorsum) without the actual folding of the fabric. Even well-placed horizontal and vertical lines recalled the pattern of pleats.

In the center is my favorite take on the trend — a beautiful pleated dress worn by Miroslava Duma. Her dress has just the right spacing for the pleats and the light fabric keeps the look from being too stiff. In addition, the color of the fabric is a beautiful combination of slate and mauve, and it is accessorized perfectly with a leather belt, a croco-embossed bag and aviators. Chic and summery without being stuffy or overly girly.

Miroslava Duma | Stockhom Street Style

As it is, Miroslava has been working this look all summer — above is another perfect way in which she has pulled off the trend. I love the navy color of the dress, but the little peek of white at the top over one of the shoulders has kept her look from becoming overwhelming and dark. And again, a leather belt and a not-so-girly accessory (in this case the fedora) keeps the look fresh and classic. {Update: Check out Tracy from The Closet Shopper‘s spin on the look … It’s similar and quite fabulous! }

Click to enlarge.

Personally, I think that the pleats rocked on the streets were the freshest embodiment of the trend (or maybe it was just Miroslava), but I’ve included a few runway looks as well. I particularly liked the pleats at Alberta Ferretti (row 2, look 1) — they were subtle and soft and reminded me of Miroslava’s chic dresses. (It might be hard to see in the photo because of the coloring, click to enlarge.) Alexander McQueen did an excellent job with the soft pleating as well, using it as a detail on a gorgeous gown.

I also think Burberry Prorsum (row 3, middle) deserved a mention here — while he did not go all out with true pleats, Christopher Bailey sent a few looks down the runway that showcased careful, tiny draped details that were incredibly similar to the gauzy pleating at Alberta Ferretti. Still just as gorgeous and just as chic! No school uniforms here.

What do you think of the pleat trend? Will you be looking to stock up on some pleated looks for your fall wardrobe?

{ Source: Images from jakandjil.com, thesartorialist.com, stockholmstreetstyle.com, and style.com }

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