From Chanel’s paper garden, Viktor & Rolf’s sculptural bouquets and Elie Saab’s enchanted forest to bunches of bamboo from Armani Privé, this year’s Paris couture show was once again conquered by florals. Flowers bloomed on the runways in the form of large painterly prints and three-dimensional accents, breathing liveliness into the sturdy fabrics.
Though dramatic in cut and design, these adorable pieces were enigmatic in the use of color. Like flowers that secretly blossom only at night, the peach carnations, pink camellias and mauve roses were often set against a black canvas. The results are wedding-worthy compositions that are highly romantic and utterly in line with Valentine’s Day and the spring season.
1. Viktor & Rolf | 2. Chanel | 3. Elie Saab | 4. Dior | 5. Giambattista Valli
6. Giorgio Armani Privé | 7. Jean Paul Gaultier | 8. Ulyana Sergeenko | 9. Valentino | 10. Alexis Mabille
(Images: Vogue UK)
Youthful and charming as they seem, floral fashion pieces can create a tablecloth, curtain or wrapping paper effect if done incorrectly. Here are a few tips when incorporating this “secret garden” trend into your daily wear:
Mix prints with plain. It’s feasible to have more than one print in your outfit, but the easiest way to carry a floral print really is to complement it with plain, neutral colors. If you’re wearing a floral jacket, match it with a denim skirt, or a pleated floral skirt with a black turtleneck tucked inside. The idea is to make your floral piece a solo statement. But if you want to be more daring, try mixing a monotonous print (e.g., nautical stripe or houndstooth) with an item that features fewer but bigger flowers.
Go causal. Give your lightweight maxi dresses to your mom and replace them with floral tees, pullovers, high-tops and backpacks. Create contrast among prints, fabrics and cuts by mixing the old with the new, e.g., a floral crop top or a floral dress with patent boots or geometric accessories.
Go sturdy. Structured material gives your floral piece a stylish twist. Instead of the normal chiffon and lace, try floral prints on caps, bomber jackets, wrap coats, sneakers and belt bags made of canvas, rayon or denim. Toughen up the feminine print with a leather satchel or lace-up chunky boots.
Go retro. Color is of utmost importance when it comes to floral prints. Tone down the impact of the busy pattern by choosing washed-out flowers against an ivory, gray or black background, which help to create a vintage vibe. Also, accessories are a great way to start any trend that you feel skeptical about. A pair of retro glasses, a flower-inspired timepiece or even a floral notebook fills the air with romantic charm without being too overwhelming.