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Ruching was a hallmark trend in ’80s fashion, defining everything from the sumptuous leather mini skirt to the puffy-sleeve ’80s prom dress. The gathered designs inherent to these styles made a swift (yet enduring) comeback in the aughts, transforming the traditional bodycon dress with an uber-flattering upgrade that magically hugged the curves and concealed them at the same damn time. As we moved into the 2010s, ruching once again became a mere sartorial artifact—until now, when ruched clothes are seeing their second major resurgence.
This new generation of the ruching trend is anything but outdated. Gone are the days of awkwardly-placed draping liberally strewn across entire garments and bunched ruching that cascades all the way from the midsection to the thighs. Now, major design houses like YSL, Preen by Thornton Bregazzi and Gucci (just to name a few) are leaving a fashion-forward mark on the trend; all three embraced several ’80s throwback trends in their 2018 runway shows, making the most of power suits, voluminous sleeves, shoulder pads, metallic lamé finishes and of course, gathered ruche detailing.
Now, these details are trickling down to the fast-fashion sphere, where they’re showing up not only in dresses and skirts, but also statement blouses and casual athleisure pieces. In other words, it’s easier to get your ruche on than ever before. Fun, flattering and omnipresent, ruching is one 2019 trend sure to have serious staying power.
Only Forever Mini Skirt, $68 at Free People
The ruched mini skirt you wore on repeat a decade ago is back—with a twist. Subtle side ruching and a minimalist print give this skirt a modern upgrade.
Orseund Iris Ruched Satin Dress, $795 at Net-a-Porter
There’s a reason this Instagram-famous silk number is always selling out.
Tularosa Tawney Dress, $158 at Revolve
This peachy dress has left us longing for spring. Plus, it offers the trend-minded a way to get in on the ruching movement while still sporting flowy silhouettes.
Cleo Top, $78 at Reformation
This ruched top is sure to look great on anyone—regardless of your cleavage situation.
Ulla Johnson Maya Embroidered Satin Midi Dress, $625 at Nordstrom
The subtly ruched sleeve detail paired with the flattering cinched waist gives this luxe midi a touch a throwback flavor.
Kendall + Kylie Ruched Crew Neck Dress, $118 at Shopbop
Pull-through ruching gives this classic bodycon dress a little tomboy character without overriding its sex appeal.
Rebecca Taylor La Vie Ruched Top, $225 at Nordstrom
Statement sleeves and a gathered bodice prove ’80s style can still feel totally romantic.
Finders Keepers Locales Ruched Midi Dress, $190 at Urban Outfitters
We’ve officially found the sweetest Valentine’s Day dress (maybe of all time).
Cinq a Sept Aren Skirt, $365 at Revolve
The peek-a-boo mesh detail on this slinky midi kicks the seduction factor up a notch.
Tibi Knit Ruched Tie Front Dress, $595 at Nordstrom
Tomboys and athleisure lovers are clearly not exempt from the ruched trend.
IRO Fling Dress, $694 at Forward
The classic ’80s mini dress re-imagined for 2019.
Jonathan Simkhai Backless Bodysuit, $395 at Shopbop
This alluring bodysuit is business in the front and party in the back.
She’s in Parties Bodycon Dress, $128 at Free People
This mini proves bodycon dresses offer the ultimate backdrop for ruched texture.
Rachel Comey Slither Ruched Mules, $380 at Need Supply
Textiles aren’t the only place we’re seeing ruched detailing.
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