Whether you’re fed up with floaty dresses or want to freshen your wardrobe for work, pleats are an instant style update.
From the French word ‘plissé’, closely connected to the word ‘plié’, the pleat ‘bends’ the fabric backwards and forwards creating crisp and business-like folds.
They’re nothing new of course. Japanese designer Issey Miyake founded his label ‘Pleats Please’ in the Eighties and the brand is still going strong. This season,
Valentino sent a striking green dress down the catwalk: the combination of pleats with such a bold colour was eye-catching for all the right reasons.
My bank balance doesn’t stretch to Valentino, sadly, but I found this sunflower yellow version from LK Bennett which offers similar punch.
Don’t be put off by the hue — saffron is one of fashion’s key trends and combined with washboard rows of knife-edge pleats, gives a confident look.
While I’m tempted to wear it round the house for a ‘don’t mess with me’ vibe if my children are playing up, pleats do need some extra work with the iron to keep them intact.
If that means they aren’t for everyday, who cares?
There’s a joy to having things in our wardrobe that are special and need looking after.
Formal occasions may be rare nowadays, but there are still times when dressing up is called for — and pleats show you’ve made an effort.
You’ve probably got a pleated midi skirt already.
It’s a style that sees no signs of disappearing and there are plenty to be found on the High Street whatever your budget.