froufrou

noun
frou·frou | \ ˈfrü-(ˌ)frü \
variants: or frou-frou
plural froufrous or frou-frous

Definition of froufrou 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a rustling especially of a woman's skirts

2 : showy or frilly ornamentation

froufrou

adjective
variants: or frou-frou

Definition of froufrou (Entry 2 of 2)

: very showy or fancy … fussy, fragile, froufrou clothes won't make it through the winter.Elle Some people dismiss the bright yellow garnish as froufrou decoration, but they're missing the point … —Jane Daniels Lear … when she had put on her make-up, he set her on his bed in her frou-frou dressing-gown … —John le Carré

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Did You Know?

Nineteenth-century Europe featured a lot of sophisticated fashions-especially in Paris, a city considered by many to be the fashion capital of the world. Women's dresses were often made of drooping layers of fabric (such as satin or silk) that rustled as the women moved around, and "froufrou" was the French word coined in imitation of the sound they made. The word made its first appearance in English in 1870 as a noun meaning "rustling." It later came to mean "ostentatious decoration," and its usage expanded beyond the world of fashion to other crafts such as architecture and interior design. These days it also shows up as the adjective frou-frou, meaning "very heavily decorated and fancy," as in "frou-frou designs."

Examples of froufrou in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Like the Seattle flagship, the Reserve coffee bars will brew drinks on machines including a siphon, and a Black Eagle espresso maker — the similar equipment staples at froufrou shops like Intelligensia. Jacqueline Colette Prosper, ELLE Decor, "Starbucks Reserve Quenches Hip Coffee Lovers' Thirst With 1,000 New Upscale Cafes," 21 Oct. 2016 Potential buyers are put off by small rooms, steep stairs and froufrou adornments in a culture where the fewest interior walls, level floors and clean lines are popular. Janet Eastman, OregonLive.com, "A dark 1890 Queen Anne Victorian becomes a bright four-plex (photos)," 19 Oct. 2017 Like the Seattle flagship, the Reserve coffee bars will brew drinks on machines including a siphon, and a Black Eagle espresso maker — the similar equipment staples at froufrou shops like Intelligensia. Jacqueline Colette Prosper, ELLE Decor, "Starbucks Reserve Quenches Hip Coffee Lovers' Thirst With 1,000 New Upscale Cafes," 21 Oct. 2016 Figures harden as the French Revolution approaches, and the century ends with an erasure of froufrou and a praise of moral virtues drawn from Greek and Roman examples. Jason Farago, New York Times, "How a Love of French Art Helped Shape the American Republic," 15 June 2017 Mechanical Art Deco motifs gave a 1920s flair to black froufrou gowns that evoked the paintings of Robert Delaunay. Patrick Cooley, cleveland.com, "Rusted Root coming to Cleveland," 6 July 2017 Mechanical Art Deco motifs gave a 1920s flair to black froufrou gowns that evoked the paintings of Robert Delaunay. Thomas Admson, The Seattle Times, "Chanel aims high with starry ‘Eiffel Tower’ Paris show," 4 July 2017 Mechanical Art Deco motifs gave a 1920s flair to black froufrou gowns that evoked the paintings of Robert Delaunay. Bloomberg.com, "Chanel Aims High With Starry 'Eiffel Tower' Paris Show," 4 July 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'froufrou.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of froufrou

Noun

1870, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1885, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for froufrou

Noun

French, of imitative origin

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Dictionary Entries near froufrou

frottola

frotton

Froude

froufrou

frough

frounce

frow

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The first known use of froufrou was in 1870

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