Peplum dresses and tops are big for this season and over the last few fashion seasons, the style has been showcased on the runway and in stores as well. However, anyone that knows their fashion history knows that this trend is far from being brand new.

Peplum fashion can be worn a myriad of ways, from day, to night, to red carpet affairs
Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images for iHeartMedia

Peplum designs date back to the 1940’s, which is when this style was officially introduced in the United States. This style started as a chic, yet modest way of dressing for women. Peplum skirting was full and plentiful, while still cinching and defining the waist and hiding those problematic spots. Matching skirts were long and slender, stopping usually in the middle of the calf. Many of these dresses and suits came in prints, from stripes, to florals and even gingham.

We saw a huge return of the peplum craze in the 1980’s, when it stuck around for quite a few years. But all of a sudden, it disappeared and we didn’t see much of it again until it got a very chic and updated look for the 21st century. This is when peplum began gracing the catwalks yet again and it was way beyond the original design. Pow! Peplum has returned like never before and I couldn’t be happier with the new, sleek and sexy options of peplum styling available for us ladies to choose from!

What I personally love about peplum is the versatility of wear. This is one of those styles where size and shape doesn’t matter. Peplum is going to flatter you, as long as it’s worn properly and with the right fit. As with anything, it’s all about finding your perfect style, fit and cut.
So, just what is peplum, in case you weren’t aware? It’s basically a shirt or dress with a fitted bodice and then a shirred or flared skirted area that starts at the torso or the waist. Now, you may cringe and say, who could wear this? Skirted at the waist?? Won’t that make me appear to be larger?

The answer is no. While there are indeed some peplum styles that aren’t flattering (circa floral patterned, loose fitting peplum dresses galore in the 1980’s- very Sixteen Candles), the updated silhouettes offer a nice variety of streamlined shapes. From a tailored, slightly flared skirt, to a barely there skirt, or a full one if you so desire, peplum can be worn by anyone and look great. This style is actually an innovative way to define the naturally skinniest part of your waist which is above the belly button, while hiding the problem areas, including the hips. If these problem areas sound familiar to you, then peplum may just be your new best friend.

You’ll find it all over the hottest celebs these days, from Kim K. to Beyonce’ to Michelle Williams and everywhere in between. Variations available in the peplum design are endless these days, so do your due diligence and shop around. Make sure you try different styles on to see what best suits you.

You’re sure to find something peplum-y that you’ll love, whether it’s a peplum skirt with that little extra tier, partnered with a sexy fitted top or bodysuit, a  dress with a slight shirr and a belted waist, a high-low version of the peplum pencil skirt to really elongate and slenderize, or a slim fitting, tailored suit with a sleek peplum pop (try lace) that’ will really make your whole look come alive.

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