The Trend Report – Floral Fashion
Last month, we kicked off our new ‘trend report’ feature by looking at all things stripe! Originally for prisoners, and later adopted by French sailors, parallel lines have enjoyed a return to form of late, having been plastered over everything, from bardot tops to body suits, this season. But as Spring dawned, with it blossomed the revival of another classic motif; the flower.
Today, we’re looking at how floral print originally sprouted, the way it’s geminated through fashion over the years, and finally, how it has blossomed across our SS16 collection. (and yes, you’ll be pleased to know we’ve now got the puns out of our system!)
How Floral Fashion Began
Flowers have always been a strong symbol of femininity, but long ago, they also held deep meaning, which cultures wanted to weave into their fabrics. Despite featuring throughout history, including the Egyptian, Greek and Roman periods, the widespread appeal of floral fabrics is thought to have originated from the Orient. The chrysanthemum featured heavily in Japanese kimonos, while in China flowers were woven into dazzlingly complicated brocades.
Floral fashion has appeared throughout history, originating from the Orient
During the fifteenth and sixteenth century, the floral trend began to gain momentum as European traders started purchasing these exotic textiles. However, due to the rarity of these fabrics, they would sell for extortionate prices. It wasn’t until the Industrial Revolution of the nineteenth century, when the textile industry boomed, that suddenly these more complicated prints became widely available. (can we get a woop woop!)
How Floral Fashion Developed
During the Victorian era, flower inspired designs became a dominant pattern across all art forms, including clothing, furniture and interior design. Elegantly intricate, as best demonstrated by the work of William Morris, the style transitioned into something altogether more modern with the arrival of the art nouveau movement at the beginning of the twentieth century. However, any further developments were subsequently put on hold due to the widespread poverty of world war.
A symbol of peace, floral fashion boomed during the 60s
It wasn’t until the sixties that the trend returned, but it absolutely came back with a vengeance, exploding over the decade of peace and love. Its vibrant aesthetic was the perfect way to reintroduce colour into fashion, while flowers as a symbol encapsulated the generation’s pursuit for peace. Since then, florals have come and gone from season to season, and have been adopted by a variety of cultures, styles and movements.
How to wear Floral Fashion Today
The SS16 catwalks were alive with botanical print, complementing this season’s love affair with elegant fabrics and fluid movement. These fresh-looking florals are the perfect way to breath life back into your wardrobe, and can either be used subtly to elevate a more neutral coloured outfit, or more ambitiously applied in the form of multiple layers for a head-to-toe statement. Inspired by this shift to softer shapes, we’ve channelled the trend in the form on our spring/summer collection.
Ditsy Print Dungaree Shorts – £16
Work a bohemian inspired look with our Floral Wide Leg Trousers. Designed to sit at the slimmest part of your waist and cut to a relaxed silhouette, they billow beautifully with every step. Pair with a block coloured crop top, to avoid challenging the design, and throw on a pair of canvas sneakers to keep the look casual and cool.
Our Floral Bomber Jacket blurs the boundaries between the botanical trend and the current zeitgeist for all things nineties. We’ve kept the design lovely and lightweight, to ensure you can wear it throughout the warmer months, so throw it over a crop top and jeans by day, or a mini skirt and heels by night.
For something a little more formal, our full length Floral Maxi Dress features a thigh-high side split and falls loosely over the body. The black and white blossom print is ideal for those after a more traditional colour combo, while it’s waist tie provides shape to the design. As for occasion wear, whether it’s a summer wedding or garden party, this Cream Pencil Dress is not only ultra-femme with its Bardot neckline and hourglass silhouette, but the scuba-like material provides enduring comfort from daytime to playtime.
Cream Floral Pencil Dress – £30
Dainty and delicate, or loud and proud? Check out our Floral inspired collection here, and why not show us how you’re wearing the trend over on Instagram by tagging us in a pic using #NCpose.
All non-brand imagery sourced from Pinterest