\ ˈfrəm-pē How to pronounce frumpy (audio) \
frumpier; frumpiest

Definition of frumpy

: dowdy, drab: such as
a : dressed in an unattractive way He's a frumpy dresser. That can't be Madonna playing a frumpy '30s-era missionary.— Peter Travers
b of clothing : not attractive : having an old, dull, unflattering, or untidy appearance wore the same old frumpy sweater … a dizzy mix of matronly frills, frumpy floral prints, and dotty dots …Flare Frumpy shoes—those which forsake all suggestiveness in favor of comfort and mobility—are back.— Misty White Sidell Baggy pants, however, can add width and look frumpy.— Christina Frank

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Other Words from frumpy

frumpily adverb
frumpily dressed
frumpiness noun
Their hats are stained with sweat … and their clothes have an agreeable air of frumpiness. — Cathy Horyn

Examples of frumpy in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Contrary to popular belief, though, dressing for chilly weather doesn’t have to look frumpy. Eliza Huber,, "31 Stylish & Warm Outfits To Inspire Your Winter Wardrobe," 5 Jan. 2021 The frumpy, Laura Ashley puff-sleeve smocks and midi-skirts. Vanessa Friedman, New York Times, "Why Do We Care So Much About Diana’s Dresses?," 17 Nov. 2020 Earlier this week, Cincinnati’s Fountain Square Christmas tree got a lot of social media attention for its frumpy debut. Hannah K. Sparling, The Enquirer, "The Brent Spence Bridge closure 'has officially broken my brain.' Twitter users react to Cincinnati bridge's crash, closure.," 12 Nov. 2020 My point is that the more standard versions of these sweaters, like the Uniqlo one shown here, look frumpy on men who aren’t taut and broad in the right places. Jacob Gallagher, WSJ, "Are Polo-Neck Sweaters Stylish or Stodgy? Depends How Old You Are," 22 Oct. 2020 These shorts have a waistband that’s just compressive enough to be flattering without being uncomfortable, and they’re long enough without feeling frumpy. Elizabeth Rhodes, Travel + Leisure, "These Girlfriend Collective Bike Shorts Are the Only Thing I'm Wearing This Summer," 15 May 2020 In 1998, Liz Lange Maternity will permanently transform pregnancy apparel from frumpy to formfitting, while ’s first store, in New York’s SoHo, will simultaneously create and sate a national appetite for cheeky-glam ceramics and home furnishings. Jennifer Milne, ELLE Decor, "Fashion Maven Liz Lange Crafts a Palm Beach Getaway with Personality," 11 Mar. 2020 The unisex sizing makes for a roomy fit, but the elegant design keeps it from being a frumpy fit. Kate Wertheimer, Sunset Magazine, "Swaddle Yourself in the Comfiest, Coziest (and Coolest) Robes on the Market," 17 Mar. 2020 That should change with the complete redesign of the Mirai, which has been rebooted from frumpy to Lexus-like with cutting-edge design, technology and performance. Evelyn Kanter, Houston Chronicle, "Fuel cell cars are next big thing, again," 7 Feb. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'frumpy.' 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 frumpy

circa 1840, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for frumpy

Time Traveler

The first known use of frumpy was circa 1840

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Statistics for frumpy

Last Updated

15 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Frumpy.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Feb. 2021.

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More Definitions for frumpy



English Language Learners Definition of frumpy

: dressed in an unattractive way also, of clothing : old and unattractive

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Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for frumpy

Nglish: Translation of frumpy for Spanish Speakers

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