Ruffles have ridges! A model wears a pink top by BCBG. Photo: Courtesy of BCBG

Blouses, dresses, skirts – even handbags and shoes – are all getting the feminine treatment for fall in the form of a structured ruffle. With ruching a regular on the runways (including most recently for spring 2010), a few extra frills will serve you well throughout the year. Designer T-shirts are an easy way to capitalize on the trend and not spend a fortune.

"I think the ruffling is something everyone can pull off," says Sonya Cosentini, style expert for T.J. Maxx and Marshalls. "It just depends on how you layer it and what you wear with it. It's a very feminine and pretty look, and so many of the hot trends are very masculine for fall -- like boyfriend blazers and bomber jackets. So, it's a great balance to those pieces."

So how do you pull off the ruffled T-shirt look? Follow these tips from our experts:


  • Layer it on thick: Let pretty ruffle details peek out under other items, Cosentini says. "Try a longer sweater that's belted, or wear it under a bomber jacket or boyfriend jacket," she says. "It gives that feminine detail with a masculine trend. That way, the ruffles are there but they're not the focal point of your outfit."
  • Ruffles or bust: Style expert and TV host Lloyd Boston says it's important to maintain balance, when wearing ruffles. "Since ruffles add volume, make sure the tiered ruffles are placed in the correct spot. For instance, if you are larger in the bust area, you will want to steer clear of adding bulk up top, opting for a shirt with ruffles either at the bottom, cuffs, or softly placed near the shoulder to help balance you out."
  • Bottoming out: "Keep the bottom half free from frou-frou, as you have enough going on at the top of your bod," says Danielle Mariott, apparel creative director at Overstock.com. She suggests a flat-front straight black pants or a simple dark denim boot cut jean.
  • Material, girls: "We're seeing ruffled tops in knits, in cottons, in silks -- in lots of different materials," Cosentini says. Just pay attention to what fabric suits you, Krupp warns. "A flimsy ruffle is harder to wear, as you have no control," she says. "Stiffer ruffles that don't move are better on older women."
  • Easy on the accessories: "Ruffles create a delicate and feminine look, acting almost as an accessory, so leave the piles of extra jewelry at home," Boston says. "Stick to simple accessories -- try a bangle or a cuff to off-set the ruffles, or a great pair of earrings. Necklaces typically take away from a ruffled top."

Lesley Kennedy is the editor of Denveralamode.com, an online magazine devoted to fashion, beauty and trends in the Mile High City.