- a trimming, as a strip of cloth or lace, gathered at one edge and left loose at the other; ruffle.
- something resembling such a trimming, as the fringe of hair on the chest of some dogs.
- affectation of manner, style, etc.
- something superfluous.
- Photography. wrinkling or loosening of an emulsion at the edges, usually due to excessively high temperature during developing.
- to trim or ornament with a frill or frills.
- to form into a frill.
- Photography. (of an emulsion) to become wrinkled or loose.
Origin of frill
Examples from the Web for frills
Stripped of these frills, the only real expense of a prison wedding is the officiant.Saying Yes to the Dress—Behind Bars
December 8, 2014
Frills were kept to a minimum, and anything in the clothes piles with the word “Princess” on it ended up in the giveaway box.Why I Finally Let My Girls Be Girly
May 17, 2014
She gave women an alternative to frills without making them look genderless.Jil Sander’s Quiet Return
September 22, 2012
In the end, stripped of the frills, Libya was just another civil war.A Not-So-Strong Strongman’s Collapse
Stephen L. Carter
August 23, 2011
For a deep-tissue massage with no frills, find Debra or Laeticia at Reebok.Gal With a Suitcase: New York's Best Pampering Spots
February 11, 2011
Kate shuddered too, and drew the frills closer about her throat.The Manxman
Frills are generally attached to them, and give them a pretty finish.The Ladies' Work-Table Book
How'll seventy-five a week, with costumes of frills and powdered hair, do you?Blue-grass and Broadway
Maria Thompson Daviess
She laughed again, and shook all her pretty ribbons and frills.Three Margarets
Laura E. Richards
Bettina, bending over her frills, felt a sudden sense of desolation.Glory of Youth
- a gathered, ruched, or pleated strip of cloth sewn on at one edge only, as on garments, as ornament, or to give extra body
- a ruff of hair or feathers around the neck of a dog or bird or a fold of skin around the neck of a reptile or amphibian
- (often capital) a variety of domestic fancy pigeon having a ruff of curled feathers on the chest and cropFull name: oriental frill
- photog a wrinkling or loosening of the emulsion at the edges of a negative or print
- (often plural) informal a superfluous or pretentious thing or manner; affectationhe made a plain speech with no frills
- (tr) to adorn or fit with a frill or frills
- to form into a frill or frills
- (intr) photog (of an emulsion) to develop a frill
Word Origin and History for frills
"mere embellishments," 1893, often in negative constructions; earlier "affectation of dress or manner" (1845); see frill.
"wavy ornamental edging," 1801 (with a doubtful attestation from 1590s), of uncertain origin despite much speculation [see OED]; figurative sense of "useless ornament" first recorded 1893. The verb meaning "to furnish with a frill" is recorded in 1570s. Related: Frilled.