What did Cinderella say when her photos weren’t ready? ‘Someday my prints will come’… Some old dad jokes just don’t really stand the test of time, do they? But I love a pun, so I’m running with it. This week I thought we should do some prints to complement the 15 basic items of last week.
As mentioned previously, a capsule wardrobe can be your sole source of spring dressing but, if you’re anything like me, you might want a splash of pattern and colour to mix it up a bit. Prints can be daunting. I know lots of stylish ladies who love to go for full-on print clashes, but if you’re less brave then think of that as something to work towards. Start off easy by mixing one print into your basics and see how you go from there.
As we’ve all been stuck inside for so long, I think a lot of you will be wanting to break out of your comfort zone more than usual over the coming weeks and months, so print and colour could be a little boost. I’m not ashamed to admit I am feeling a little apprehensive about the country opening up again. Not because I’m worried about catching anything, more because I feel like I’ve developed a little bit of Stockholm Syndrome and I don’t know how I’ll be getting back on the tube again, seeing people I haven’t seen for months, leaving my local area, going into an actual shop for a ‘browse’, rather than a strict ‘buy-what-you-need-don’t-make-eye-contact-don’t-touch-anything-and-get-out-quick’ situation. How will we all get on living a ‘normal life’? Whatever that might look like now.
I’m easing in gently. I went for an actual real-life work meeting this week, I’ve met a few people I haven’t seen since before Christmas and I’ve booked a table at a pub AND at a restaurant for next week. I’ve thought about my meeting outside outfits. That basically means adding secret leggings to skirts or dresses, popping a thermal vest on underneath a nice blouse and taking my Uniqlo ultra light down vest in my handbag for emergency warmth. This vest (or bodywarmer as I prefer to call it) is such a great piece of kit. I used to take it to the football to pop on at half time to take the chill off my kidneys, but now I shall use it in the pub garden when the sun sets.
But this isn’t about layers, this is about some excellent prints. Someday your prints will come. That day is now…
PRINTED FLORAL DRESSES
This one is a no brainer really. Florals? For spring? Groundbreaking.… The only question is what kind of floral print to go for? Personally, I prefer more of ditsy/Liberty print vibe. That said, I have this Essentiel Antwerp dress in different colours from a couple of years back and I love it, I just don’t wear it often enough. Note to self, must wear when I go out somewhere nice again. I find the small printed dresses in my wardrobe work better for everyday wear. If you’re looking for an independent brand, check out the Big Spring Dress Edit for 12 of my favourites.
A good printed blouse is probably your easiest entry point if you’re a little reticent about patterns. You can keep the rest of your outfit simple. Don’t think about those awful polyester numbers you see in the Damart Catalogue or those non-crease monstrosities that get advertised at the back of the Sunday supplement magazines, they are the clothing equivalent of thinking about a Saga cruise or a chair for your shower. There’s plenty of time for that in the future; right now, look at cool-girl sites like Sezane.
I bought this blouse the other week and it’s even prettier in real life. The neck isn’t too high as to emphasise the wattle and the ruffles aren’t too ‘ruffly’ for everyday wear. I just need some good weather so it can make its debut.
MORE PRINTED DRESSES
If ditsy florals aren’t your thing. Too girly maybe? Then look for a bolder print. Animal is always an option, but there’s also geometric, block prints, spots and, like this LF Markey number, even something a bit ‘painterly’. Is that even a word? I just love the colours in it.
A printed jacket could be a new option for a lot of you, but they are a very useful thing in the spring/summer months. I’m talking more about a quilted/bomber/casual style rather than a floral blazer. Floral blazers can feel a bit, well, just a bit shit if I’m honest. Blazers should really be one colour, or at a push, two, but a patterned blazer almost makes me wince. Sorry for anyone who has a floral blazer tucked away in the cupboard. I think the charity shops should be opening tomorrow, so, every cloud…
Finally, we have the printed skirt. I don’t go much on skirts, mainly because I just don’t wear them very often, I find they can cut me in half sometimes. But, having trawled through my old photos to find one of me in a skirt, I found the above of my Per Una floral skirt from a few years ago that I do still love. Yes, Per Una, I’m telling you it’s changed. Whereas before it was all overly embellished gypsy skirts and long line crochet cardis in questionable colours, it’s now my first port of call when browsing the M&S website. Whoever took over designing that range, ‘Bravo’ to you.
I hope you all have something to look forward to this week. It’s going to be an expensive month that’s for sure. Meals out, hair cut, colour, maybe nails, feet and face! Bring it on.