(Source: Getty Images)
"Power dressing" was very much in vogue in the '80s, when shoulder pads gained favor among Princess Diana and Working Girl-influenced shoppers. The structured shape was a go-to for career-driven women, but it gradually fell off the radar as slimmer silhouettes (ie the famous waif look of the '90s or 2000's pop stars' skin-tight ensembles) turned popular.
There is definitely merit in having big shoulders, however. The volume on top gives a whittling effect to the waist and turns even the simplest LBD into a statement. Celebrities have caught on, donning tops and dresses with puffed sleeves. This update on the old staple is no longer stiff and square but rounded or fluttered. One thing has stayed the same across decades, however: bold shoulders make every woman who wears them the center of attention.
Kate Mara wore 3D-embellished puffed sleeves, emphasized even more with her slicked-back hair. Keep strands sleek when wearing this style to avoid obstructing its effect.
Actress Kate Mara attends the 68th Annual Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall on June 8, 2014 in New York City. (Getty Images)more pics »
Rose Byrne's mini dress could have looked a little too safe without the volume up top.
Actress Rose Byrne attends the 2014 New York Women In Film And Television "Designing Women" Awards Gala at McGraw Hill Building on June 18, 2014 in New York City. (Getty Images)more pics »
Zoe Saldana picked a blouse with voluminous sleeves to contrast her more streamlined trousers.
Zoe Saldana . attends Persol Magnificent Obsessions: 30 Stories Of Craftmanship In Film Event at Museum of the Moving Image on June 13, 2012 in the Queens burough of New York City. (Getty Images)more pics »
Marisa Tomei's coral number hugs her body and finds balance in butterfly sleeves, adding shape to the shoulders.
Actress Marisa Tomei attends the 2014 Fragrance Foundation Awards on June 16, 2014 in New York City. (Getty Images)more pics »
Those apprehensive of the trend should opt for more subtle takes on the shape in blouses by Audrey Talbot ($65) and Whistle & Wolf ($30) or a dress such as Billie and Blossom's ($27). Plenty by Tracy Reese's puffed-sleeve top ($156) gives the full voluminous effect, as does DSquared2's tangerine dress ($348)—that is, if you're willing to splurge a bit. Shop our picks, below:
(Source: Zappos, Dorothy Perkins, Sierra Trading Post, House of Frasier, The Trend Boutique)Dsquared2 Sailarette Costume Dress, $348, at zappos.com; Billie and Blossom Blue Butterfly Tunic Dress, $27, at dorothyperkins.com; Audrey Talbott Silk Blouse, $65, at sierratradingpost.com; Whistle & Wolf Lace Print Bow Front Blouse, $30, at houseoffrasier.co.uk; Plenty by Tracy Reese Square Neck Blouse, $156, at shopthetrendboutique.com