• A gathered strip or pleated border of a skirt or petticoat.
  • (Furbelows) Showy ornaments or trimmings.


  • Adorn with trimmings.

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Example Sentences

“Most of the office dressed business casual, but Katia arrived to work each day furbelowed with bold colors, vintage styles, and eye-catching jewelry.”

“I find taking the time to furbelow myself before I leave the house gives me more confidence.”

“This outfit needs a few more furbelows to make it complete.”

Word Origin

French, late 17th century

Why this word?

“Furbelow” comes from the French term “falbala,” which describes a ruffle or flashy ornament. In English, it can be used as a verb (“to be furbelowed in finery”) or as a noun for the bits of finery. In one usage, a furbelow was a specific type of pleated border on a petticoat, but as fashions evolved, “furbelows” (plural) came to designate any type of fancy ornamentation or accessory. 

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