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Knitted jumper with tiered fringing and pleated tulle skirt by MSGM, crepe and plastic wrap skirt by Supriya Lele, and knee-high calfskin boots by Santoni

Eight Ways to Style Ruffled and Tiered Clothes

Whether inspired by waves on the sand or an afternoon tea party, layers of fabric punctuating your ensemble make for a strong statement

Lead ImageKnitted jumper with tiered fringing and pleated tulle skirt by MSGM, crepe and plastic wrap skirt by Supriya Lele, and knee-high calfskin boots by Santoni

Cristóbal Balenciaga worked with fabric like a sculptor might with marble or clay. The designer would whittle and mould his work into voluminous ruffles, ballooning curves and cake-like tiers which went on to form the delicious structures of evening gowns and cocktail dresses.

For AnOther Magazine A/W17, Agata Belcen and Nell Kalonji explored tiered clothing with photographer Jackie Nickerson, capturing a selection of seasonal pieces which channel the layers Balenciaga so loved. Here, we explore eight ways to style them.

1. Sleeve 

Transform the sleeve of your jacket into a textural feature by nonchalantly slinging a blazer off one shoulder, allowing the fabric to fall into the layers of a voluminous skirt. 

2. Botanical

Gigantic sheaths of tulle blooming around your body hint at the botanical, but maintain a sense of the avant-garde with their magnitude.

3. Nautical

Sculptural fabric forming satisfying waves alludes to ripples on the sand, or the crimped pattern of a clamshell. A subtle nod toward the nautical.

4. Swish-swish

Dramatic black tiers of taffeta may seem sombre, but they also lend an outfit a particular vibrancy: imagine the swishing sound made as you walk.

5. Gardener

Take up horticulture in the most glamorous gardening outfit, with layers of canvas billowing in the wind. Complete with a pair of elbow-length organza gloves and leave your heavy-duty marigolds at home.

6. Party

An oversized version of a little girl’s tea party dress can make for a grown-up ensemble indeed. Watch out for cake crumbs finding their way into the nooks and crannies of your tulle.

7. Bridal

A contemporary take on the bridal meringue, walk down the aisle at your winter wedding in subtle folds of bright white leather. A cotton tank top adds an androgynous edge.

8. Bustle

With a high-neck blouson, laser-cut to emulate the delicacy of lace – paired with a shirt tied around your waist to form a modern-day bustle – one can pay homage to Victoriana without looking outdated.

Hair: Jawara Wauchope at Bryant Artists using BUMBLE AND BUMBLE. Make-up: Nami Yoshida at Bryant Artists using NARS. Models: Grace Bol at The Hive Management and Jing Wen at Elite London. Casting: Piotr Chamier. Digital tech: Tim Grant. Photographic assistant: Andy Moores. Styling assistants: Chloe Grace Press, Rebecca Perlmutar, Abigail Adler, Nicola Chan, Sunnie Fraser and Tess Pisani. Casting assistants: Natalia Farnaus and Olivia Langner. Production: Freddie De Santiago at Sylvia Farago Ltd

These images originally appeared in Autumn/Winter 2017 issue of AnOther Magazine, which is on sale now.