How to Wear Ruffles over 40

Today I’m talking how to wear ruffles without looking like you been caught in a time-machine.

Yes lovelies, I do speak from experience.

My  first encounter with the humble ruffle dress occurred when I was about 7. My Mumma gave it to me. It was BROWN with white piping at the edge of the ruffles (to emphasise them of course) – sounds glorious eh? I’ll have you know, it only came out on very special occasions – mind you, at the time I loved it. Not gonna lie 😉

I then advanced on to the New Romantic era and yes of course the ra-ra-skirt – I obviously love ruffles!

Anyway, if you missed the memo – ruffles are big news this A/W17

Wearing this high-fashion ruffle trend is not at all difficult (in my humble opinion).

You just need to OWN IT.

If you love girly ruffles, go for this look. Please don’t avoid them or indeed add this trend to the too-hard basket.

It’s great to mix-up your wardrobe with a small injection of high-fashion.

The key with any new trend, is always to wear it with a bucket load of confidence, plus a huge smile on your dial!

How to wear Ruffles Over 40

White Shirt Dress with Ruffles* Wearing L $159.00 | Classic Singlet in White* Wearing M $59.00 both Bohemina Traders | Ripped jeans Oldies from Seed | Freshwater Pearl Necklace $175.50 Sebastianella | Heels oldies from Spendless

As soon as this dress was released from Bohemian Traders, it caught my attention. I studied it closely and immediately started imagining how I would style it – such a good sign.

So when the dress arrived unexpectedly in a parcel, I gasped – it was like the BT girls had read my mind.

Since then, I have been super excited to wear it.

How to wear Ruffles Over 40

White Shirt Dress with Ruffles* Wearing L $159.00  Bohemina Traders  | Jeans: Harris Scarfe | Request boots $49.99 Spendlesss Shoes

I do have a few tips and trickery to pulling this look off though.

If you were to follow the ‘ruffle rules’ – (understanding the principal of style rules is good, but remember rules are always open to interpretation) it would recommend you avoid ruffles at all costs, if you are big in the boob dept.

I’m sure you have already noticed, that I very much tick the ‘boob’ box.

Style, should certainly not be this prescriptive in my eyes.

Like all fashion rules –  they are useful, but not necessarily set in stone.

Instead, explore the options first – colour is one of those options that can make a huge difference when it comes to ruffles.

For example, if this dress was baby pink, the ruffles would stand-out for too much for me. The pink would also add more unwanted volume. The white however, tones down the ruffles enough – they become less obvious (unless its blowing a gale on the day you take your pics). Instead it becomes more about the fabric and less about the ruffles.

Shape now takes over. The long sleeve adds more balance – which is finished with a wide band on the cuff.

Also, the other key is the length – it’s drawing the eye down, skimming over my wide butt and thigh.

But the true genius is the shirt style.

This makes the dress super wearable for lots of different body shapes.

Remember, block colour is often the key to working with flounces and frills.

Also, just because it’s A/W it doesn’t mean you can still wear white. It is however, also available in black.

How to wear Ruffles Over 40

Because this is a shirt style dress, it maximizes the style opportunities.

Tips for styling this dress:

  • Wear this dress ‘kimono style’  – colour blocking the white also helps elongate the torso and show-off the cute velvet necktie.
  • Keep accessories sharp, balanced and tonal.
  • Leave a bit of cleavage showing if you’re fuller in the bust.
  • Athletic shapes will look sensational wearing this dress buttoned-up.
  • Wear alone with boots or killer heels, even your favourite kicks will look fabulous (it’s quite see-through in the white, so a slip maybe required).
  • Toughen-up the pretty with leather or pleather.

Ruffles in general:

Blouse: Ruffle detail works better on a fuller bust (or if you have wide shoulders) if the ruffles are horizontal. Smaller bust can go crazy!

Same principal with patter v’s colour block

Skirts: Ruffles over the butt and thighs will draw attention to this area. End of.


We shot these images on two different days, in two different locations – we didn’t realise how much colour bounced off the walls (both days it was blowing a bloody gale too)

Ankle Update:

I still keep trying to fit my oversized ankle into my boots – I’m not quite there yet, but it won’t stop me trying! Very determined to get my life back on track asap.


Are you game to try the ruffle trend? Or are you old like me and jumped on the band wagon the first time around ? 😉


This post features items sent to me for editorial consideration in accordance with my disclosure policy. This post also includes affiliate links, which in a nutshell means, if you click-through to purchase, I may earn a small commission – but you don’t pay any extra!


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