Thursday, February 20th, 2020
Bringing the Drama with Dramatic Sleeves
If there’s one common thread in the trends taking off in the new decade, it’s that bigger is better. Fashion is moving away from the minimalist essence that dominated the runways through the mid-2010s and embracing the drama. Bags are getting bigger, pant legs are getting wider, and sleeves are getting ever more dramatic, too. Fashion is channelling the 80s and early-00s is a big way. To be honest, those two are my least favorite decades in fashion. But the 2020s take on dramatic sleeves has captured my attention.
Dramatic sleeves have been sneaking up in a big way over the last two or so years. Last summer, milkmaid dresses exploded in popularity after solidly bubbling under during the summer of 2018. While milkmaid dresses generally evoke a more whimsical and rustic feel, lately, the signature dramatic sleeves have started making their way into other styles as well. Cardi B recently rocked a Burberry faux fur jacket with dramatic sleeves, while Keyshia Kaior took the drama a step forward in a Dolce & Gabbana set.
Seeing dramatic sleeves incorporated in a less fairytale way sold me on the trend and inspired this purchase! This was a date night look where I was trying to find the perfect balance of sexy, but not too sexy. The dramatic sleeves balance out the short length of the dress, giving the look a little less “nightclub” and a little more “dinner downtown”. It was Valentine’s Day, so the red was a given 🙂
Finally, the biggest thing that makes the dramatic sleeve trend feel fresh in 2020 is where the volume on the sleeve is! The 80s are known for their shoulder pads, and I hate shoulder pads. I cut them out of every blazer I own, even if it means seam ripping the lining and sewing it back together. But the sleeves of 2020 focus the volume either slightly below the shoulders, or upwards instead of outward. It’s a subtle difference, but makes for a fresher (and more modern) silhouette.
I think it’s safe to say these sleeves will sneak into my wardrobe more and more! How do you feel about the dramatic sleeve trend? Let me know in the comments or on instagram!