The fashion-forward always have a flair for the dramatic, and these Chicago women are taking it literally with eye-catching peplum. The figure-flattering cut ranges from flirty (with bright colors and soft pleats) to formal (with chic fabrics and structured flare). Whatever the occasion, pair peplum with a slim-fit skirt or skinny jeans for the season’s sleekest look. With so many options — including peplum belts — there’s never been a better time to put a little pep in your step.
At a gala six months ago, when designer Azeeza Desai Khan shared a table with Josephine Lee, president and artistic director of the Chicago Children’s Choir, it was a clear-cut case of creative serendipity. “We connected instantly,” says Khan. Lee was interested in a new look for the Children’s Choir uniforms, and as a fan of Khan’s line Azza, enlisted the designer to create gowns that reflected the choir’s fashion-forward, progressive personality. But it didn’t stop there: Lee helped enlist Khan to create the costumes for “Sita Ram,” a musical collaboration between the Chicago Children’s Choir, Lookingglass Theatre Company and Natya Dance Theater.
A longtime staple of tough girls and tomboys, leather is taking a more feminine turn with rich colors, tailored cuts and high-gloss shine. Whether it’s a fitted jacket or a pretty peplum, adding a leather touch can turn an outfit from cute to chic. And with so many brands offering faux alternatives, too, there’s never been a better time to show some skin.