Making a huge debut on the street scene during Spring, the bell sleeve (and other voluminous adaptations) are back again this Autumn/Winter 2016 for brides and bridesmaids alike. Céline, Ellery and Rose Assoulin have all dabbled with the design, creating off-the-shoulder shapes and over exaggerated cuffs in ribbed, sumptuous fabrics. As the sleeves become progressively bigger, we have started to take notice.
Flared batwing and dolman sleeves have also joined this ‘extreme’ clothing category, with bridal designers Suzanne Harward, Ralph & Russo, Christos Costarellos and Alon Livné White merging the oversized trend into their 2016 couture collections. Designers have re-interpreted the bell sleeve fad by including elaborate ostrich feather textures and two-dimensional embroidered patterns in stretch jersey and wool crepe cloths.
When styling your 70’s inspired bell sleeve gown, balance is next to none in terms of nailing the overall ensemble. One way to achieve balance while maintaining a sense of femininity is revealing a slither of bare skin. Naked shoulders are often paired best with big sleeves. Keep accessories to a minimum and hair slicked back to allow the structure of the dress to take precedence.
For bridesmaids or guest attire, a soft yet sculptural jacket or a little black dress that delicately skims the knee will see the daring trend get you through to winter, just add mules or a block heel.