Long gone are the days when wearing florals meant looking like your grandmother. Nowadays, there are tons of options for anyone who wants to wear florals (or any other prints for that matter). So whether you’re into dresses, tops, or shoes you can definitely include florals without looking like a shrinking violet.
With florals it’s a good idea to stick to just one item per outfit. Mixing florals is very difficult to do because each floral pattern is structured differently and has its own set of colors. Therefore, I’ll be focusing on giving you foolproof pointers that will work 100% of the time so that you are guaranteed to look fabulous every time you step out the door.
Shape: The key to not looking frumpy in a floral dress is finding one that has some shape to it. Or if it’s loose, then grab a belt or large ribbon and cinch the waist. Wearing a shapeless floral dress or top is a surefire way to add pounds to your frame. Take a cue from the Sex and the City ladies. All three are wearing very bold prints but all three outfits fit perfectly around the waist. Suddenly florals don’t look so frumpy anymore.
Long sleeves or short: Long sleeved floral dresses tend to be overpowering and can easily look like something from Little House on the Prairie. If you’re going to go for long sleeves, then follow actress Paula Patton’s example below and show some skin. In her case showing skin on top and the bottom helps to reduce the impact of the very strong prints in her dress.
If you’re going to go for long sleeves and full length, then opt for a dress like Oprah’s. Her dress uses very subdued florals and they’re only on the bottom half of the dress. The top half employs solid, dark colors which complement the bottom half perfectly.
This leads me to my next point…
Body type: If you think florals are only for skinny girls, you’re completely wrong. As with every fashion trend, the key is finding what works for your body type. Oprah’s dress above shows that florals can work when you’re top and bottom heavy. Notice that she chooses a dress that shows off the bust and minimizes her bottom half. The dress also has an A-line cut, which means it hugs the body at the top and then starts to flare out slowly from the waist. It floats softly around the lower body but doesn’t hug. The sleeves of the dress are also 70s-style bell sleeves that flare out as you go towards the wrist. The cut and colors all work to create a very feminine, sleek silhouette.
Your mood: What if today you’re feeling girly and want to show off your feminine side? Then you can go for a muted dress like this one, which creates a fantastic hourglass shape thanks to the contrasting print that is applied just beneath the bustline:
But what if you want to let your inner rock star shine and the only clean piece of clothing you have is a floral dress? Well, just pair it with some killer lace-up boots like Rihanna. It’s a little sweet and a little rock ‘n roll:
Or you can go for a floral-and-leather dress similar to Rihanna’s (the girl does have a love-hate relationship with florals doesn’t she?). However, to prevent people from asking you how much you charge per hour, wear it with flat sandals rather than sky high heels.
Shoes: My favorite way to add flower power to my wardrobe is via shoes. There’s something about dressing up the feet! With floral prints available for pumps, flats, and s, you can be adorned in flowers year round! (Just look at those pink boots. To die for!)
And one more thing, when the temperature starts to drop that’s no excuse to let go of florals. Aside from floral boots, you can also wear a tunic such as this one with jeans, leggings, or tailored pants:
You can also wear your summer dress well into fall by throwing a fitted cardigan over it. Or wear a mock turtleneck underneath your favorite knee length, sleeveless summer dress (just make sure to stay in the same family of colors when adding the turtleneck). If you’re really hesitant to give florals a go, then at least grab a floral-inspired scarf during the cold months. The colors and prints will perk you up while you shovel snow!