The most festive season is very much upon us, and for those who haven’t yet dabbled in perusing all the party-ready options available, allow us to introduce you to the no-brainer holiday dress. Mini hems meet dramatic silhouettes in looks that nod—okay, fully point—to the ‘80s, both in aesthetic and attitude. It only takes a little digging to see where the volume (pun intended) hails from.
Now a mainstay on the street-style scene, relatively new label Rotate was started just last year by Jeanette Madsen and Thora Valdimars, both front-row fixtures and former fashion editors. The brand’s signature oversize puff-sleeve mini dresses, crafted in eye-catching patterns and sumptuous jacquards, were an immediate hit—as well as a repeated sighting in every Instagram feed.
Similarly, Attico founders Gilda Ambrosio and Giorgia Tordini celebrate opulence, embellishments and unapologetic glamour with their nostalgic aesthetic. They’re big on all things vintage, with their Fall 2019 collection featuring plenty of metallics, crushed velvet and ruching. You can even look to Retrofête, a newcomer brand whose name quite literally translates to “retro party.” Their signature wrap dresses come drenched in hundreds of tiny beads and sequins, but their penchant for leg-baring proportions and silken fabrications hark back to an era past.
We’d also be remiss not to chart Anthony Vaccarello as a proponent of the ‘80s revival. His love affair with oversized bows, plunging necklines and the one-shoulder silhouette are all plucked straight from the bygone decade and imbued with his signature hard-edge appeal. Over on the softer side, Alessandra Rich has also taken everyone on a trip down memory lane. The fashion darling’s become a sartorial success with industry insiders and influencers alike thanks to her over-the-top, indulgently feminine designs, crafted with a heavy dose of vintage inspiration. Think plenty of lacy inserts, sweetheart necklines, floral prints and polka dots. (A smattering of retro strass jewelry is the extra sprinkle you didn’t know you needed, but can’t help to add.)
Although each iteration feels undoubtedly modernized, the overall feel-good vibe is meant to be nostalgic. Cue Whitney Houston’s I wanna dance with somebody—these variations below will last long into the wee hours of the night.
Major Puff Sleeves
One of the most flattering styles (and hallmarks), the drama of an oversized sleeve just delivers fun wherever it goes. This is where bigger really is better.
If any look says ’80s, it’s undeniably a statement shoulder, courtesy of padded blazers. Blazer dressing, or even the “tuxedo dress” as it’s sometimes called, is borrowed directly from the decade. Lush velvet and sparkling crystals are the cherry on top.
Lustrous fabrics, especially when fashioned in hues like fuchsia, emerald-green and silver, make for immediate scene-stealers. Ruching and shirring make for a picked-up-from-the-past detail, too.