Fashion: Summer floral designs

Picture: JANE BARLOW
Picture: JANE BARLOW
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A perennial favourite, florals find themselves floating down runways annually and decorating the high street every summer. This year is no different. Here’s how ‘to do’ this omnipresent trend with ease

Floral moods

Say it with flowers instead of words. Roses are synonymous with romance, unless they are yellow of course. A crown of daisy chains around your head says something very different to a corsage around your wrist. The same thing applies when popping flowers on clothing. They are the perfect print for conveying your mood.

History

The epitome of femininity, florals on fabric dates back to the 1600s. Imported from the East to the wealthiest Europeans, these ornate designs were one of the world’s first status symbols. Fast forward to present day and they have touched everything from 60s flower power to McQueen’s gothic chic. It’s a genre-spanning style, adaptable to anyone’s pallet.

Top to Toe

There is a simple way to go head to foot in floral. The maxi dress. But for those feeling like flaunting their summer bodies, make separates come together in one unified appearance. Layer dresses over silk printed trousers for a luxurious look. Find a phenomenal pair of floral print shoes to top it off, and go mad with a tiny posy in the hair. You are your own canvas, be bold.

Floral Frame of Mind

SAY it with flowers instead of words. Roses are synonymous with romance, unless they are yellow, of course. A crown of daisy chains around your head says something very different to a corsage around your wrist. The same thing applies when popping flowers on clothing. They are the perfect print for conveying your mood.

Bigh street

No matter what end of the budget you sit at, there are florals for us all. My favourite high street item right now is at Oliver Bonas on Hanover Street. Team together their flamboyant flamingo and floral print top with their intense poesy print pyjama pants and the whole outfit will come in at £54.00.

The Clash

This season is for experimenting so don’t fall back on your safe summer wardrobe of maxi dresses and simple shifts. Clashing floral prints is becoming a much more mainstream look. John Lewis have even got in on the act styling a fuschia pink and canary yellow floral chiffon shirt with a cream, purple and green pencil skirt for their latest customer campaign images. Now you can’t get more conventional than that.

The Designers

Dior went ladylike tapping into their heritage with a modern twist. Oversized 1950s ball gown skirts garnished with iridescent rose motifs were teamed with streamlined tops that resembled body armour, edging out the prettiness of the prints. While the fashionista’s label of the moment, Issa, threw a bit of the tropics in with their florals for a collection that looks like a summer holiday printed on fabric.

High end

Or treat yourself to an investment that will remain in your wardrobe forever more and nip into Jane Davidson for some Issa. Remember fashion is becoming a collectable commodity, much like art and fine wine, with some vintage frocks going for more than the average Peter Howson. At least this way you get to wear your investment.

CREDITS

Model: Jude at The Model Team.

Thanks to Tiger Lily for venue.

Floral print dress by Issa, from Jane Davidson

Floral print trousers by Issa, from Jane Davidson

Floral print python shoes by Jimmy Choo, from Pam Jenkins