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Yes, they're back: How to rock the ruffle

Deborah Baic / The Globe and Mail/Deborah Baic / The Globe and Mail

Daringly retro, the peplum is sure to ruffle a few feathers this season: The ubiquitous frill has been resurrected from the 1980s to trim skirts, dresses and even jackets. While its presence may bring back memories of the overdressed cast of Designing Women, however, the latest incarnation proves to be much more subdued – and flattering. Yes, you can work with flounce in a corporate context, even if you're not Delta Burke. Here's how.

1. While the excess fabric of a peplum, usually situated on the waist or hip, may suggest that you're adding bulk where you shouldn't, the effect can be quite flattering. Look for a piece on which the skirt starts at your natural waist and hits in the middle of the hip. This will work to enhance the curves that you've got (or give the illusion of ones you don't).

2. In a workplace setting, a jacket is key. There are plenty of peplums out there on cropped and tailored jackets that add just the right amount of office-friendly flair. Look to Peter Som's interpretation of the new power suit and pair your jacket with a slim pencil skirt. And remember that, unlike peplums, shoulder pads are best left to the eighties.

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3. On the subject of bulk, you'll want to keep the whole look streamlined and slim throughout the rest of the outfit. That means a skirt that fits snugly across the hips or a pair of slim trousers. Add a pair of killer heels to provide height and balance out proportions.

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