Some words are a constant source of delight, and furbelow is one of those.
I've known this word since I was very small, when, hazily, I assumed it referred to luxurious underwear.
I found out exactly what it meant, ooh, it must have been about...
...er, eight thirty last night.
Furbelow almost always appears with its non-identical twin, frills. Frills and furbelows, people say (well, actually they don't: only retired colonels in old-fashioned novels ever say frills and furbelows, but you know what I mean).
And what is a furbelow?
One of these:
This is William Pitt the Younger – the painting is attributed to Thomas Gainsborough (c. 1804)
And some more:
That's a frill-necked lizard. You get them in Australia. Lucky Australia!
By now it should be clear that furbelows are flounces or frills or some other bit of (usually fabric) bling.
It will also be clear that the phrase frills and furbelows is saying the same thing twice.
But wouldn't the world be a greyer place if we banished furbelow just because we didn't need it?
Spot the Frippet: furbelow. This word comes from the French dialect word farbella, and has attained its current form because people associated frills with underwear and fur with luxury: so it's really a very happy accident.