Peplum Tops Are Making A Comeback - Here's How To Update The Look

The peplum top is one of the most popular fashions from the bygone era that has been reimagined throughout time. From Dior's "New Look" in 1947 to the power suit takeover of the '80s, this silhouette has become a much-loved look for many generations of trendsetters. The peplum top continues to be reinvented today, with a variety of ways to style it for a refreshed iteration on a classic look. 

The hallmarks of a peplum top are that its fabric is tight around the chest and flares out at the waistline, most commonly in a ruffle fashion. It's widely known for its ultra-flattering fit that contours the body and gives the wearer an instant hourglass figure. These design elements combined are why the blouse is so often associated with femininity and has become such an enduring style in fashion. Ahead, we explore some of the refreshed ways of wearing the time-honored peplum silhouette.

Style it with trendy items

Modernizing a classic look is easy when you incorporate new items into the formula of your outfit. Take a styling cue from the outfit assembled by the fashion boutique Lisa Says Gah featured above, which updated its romantic peplum top with low-rise trousers, statement shoes, and fun fashion accessories, like clear framed sunglasses and DIY beaded necklaces. By combining the timeless silhouette with your favorite modern styles you can recreate the look for yourself just as easily.

Add texture with plissé fabric

Opting for a blouse rendered with plissé fabric adds texture to the classic top and makes it even more visually complex. The attention to detail in the structure of the peplum top pictured on fashion blogger Beatrice Forsell above, combined with its neutral brown hue, proves, once again, that less is sometimes more. Style yours with simple gold jewelry and a light-wash denim to recreate Forsell's look, and finish it off with a slicked-back bun for a high-gloss vibe.

Opt for balloon sleeves

As arbiters of the Scandinavian it-girl style, Copenhagen-based fashion brand Stine Goya broke the mold with this creative take on the peplum blouse. From the dramatic balloon sleeves to the pastel patterned fabric, this cutesy iteration of the peplum top modernizes the classic style. The pulled-together fashion sense that Scandinavian women are known for is exemplified in this look, with the matching separates worn together to complete the outfit. Make this style your own by pairing it with your favorite shoes, like sneakers or heels. 

Reimagine the '80s power suit

Not only is this iteration of the peplum top a flattering look, but the added design elements, like puff sleeves and pleated waistline, make it ultra-stylish too. This rendition of the 1980s women's power suit worn by fashion blogger Jill Wallace is the perfect balance of business and pleasure for anyone looking to elevate their business casual look and an easy way to put a modern spin on popular '80s fashion. Emulate Wallace's style by pairing it with matching shorts and gold jewelry for a tied-together finish.  

Play with proportions

Transform this timeless silhouette by playing with its design elements, such as the length of the peplum top's flared fabric. The outfit pictured above on motivational speaker and Ganni girl, Thilde M. Kinnunen Pedersen, is the perfect example of this playful approach to the top's proportions. Take style pointers from Pedersen's twinset look by layering a your peplum blouse over a long sleeve top, in addition to adding fashion accessories and shoes that match the printed style. 

Make it a monochrome moment

Put together an effortlessly elegant look using Isis Maria's ensemble for outfit inspiration. The Berlin-based artist wore a cotton-poplin smock blouse with a peplum hem for an elevated casual evening look. While the peplum blouse is filled with design details, like a square ruffled collar and pleating, Maria was able to make it appear pared-back by styling it with black trousers and a black iPhone case. Her monochromatic outfit is an effortlessly cool approach to wearing the peplum top that can be easily recreated in your favorite colorway. 

Wear the style in an unexpected material

This crocheted edition of the peplum top is an exciting way to modernize the timeless style. Not only does it veer from the traditional peplum blouse in length (this one being much shorter than the average, full coverage peplum top), but the crochet knitting fabric used in this edition is much heavier than the cotton or linen fabrics that are more commonly associated with the design. If you're feeling crafty, there are plenty of DIY tutorials to watch that will teach you how to create your own version of this design. 

Dress the look up with playful prints

Refresh the classic style by opting for a high-energy print, like the fruit cocktail one splashed across this peplum blouse by Lisa Says Gah. With short puff sleeves and a self tie at the neck, this lightweight blouse combines romantic design elements with the classic peplum hemline. The contemporary print makes the style appear more modern and is further modernized by the incorporation of punchy, stand-out accessories. Recreate the look by finding lookalike items in your closet and pairing them with your favorite printed peplum blouse. 

Switch it up with a tie top

Despite its plain white tee appearance, this peplum top combines various style elements to add intrigue and complexity into its structure. From the puff sleeves to the high neckline, this tie-front top is a midriff baring masterpiece that turns the classic peplum style into a must-have item for summer. Recreate the look with fashion from your own closet, using knee-high boots and a miniskirt similar to the one that artist, influencer, and activist Gabrielle Richardson wore above. 

Wear the style as outerwear

Style your peplum top with a unique twist by incorporating its signature sihlouette into something unexpected, like a sweater. This fashionable spin on the wardrobe classic is achieved here with a self tie added to the end of the sweater's waistline. Not only is it an easy way to dress up a sweater for stylish winter fashion, but the design is also a great way to modernize the peplum blouse's silhouette. Style it with skinny jeans or leggings to accentuate the hourglass shape created by the design.

Try out a micro version

With its oversized puff sleeves, ruffled square neckline, half button-down fastening at the front, and dramatic ruffles at the waistband this peplum top is rich with design elements that reimagine the time-honored style into something that is truly contemporary. This look fits well into the micro mini trend that's dominating fashion following the micro mini skirt craze. It's a solid outfit idea to recreate for summer that works well for anyone with a penchant for midriff-baring crop tops.