How to Wear Prints
This season, the Mary Katrantzou effect is still in play with digital prints making a statement left, right and centre. Whether in the form of matching, flamboyant, head to toe prints like the geometric suits at Louis Vuitton in sludgy 70s shades, or the colourful hi-res winter florals as seen as Erdem and Jonathan Saunders, prints are coming at you big time in aw12.
Where to Shop for Prints on the UK High-street
My fave shops for prints this season include Warehouse (great for geometric and digital floral prints), Phase Eight for a more classic take on winter florals, Ted Baker for bright bold prints, River Island for funky florals, Hobbs for prints suitable for office wear, Karen Millen for glamorous take on prints and Oasis for smart-casual.
Choosing the right print
When selecting a print, it’s vital that you remain true to your personality and usual Style ID, otherwise a print can quite easily take over! If you usually quite like a quirky, 70s vibe then a matching graphic patterned suit could be the key piece for this autumn and winter or if you don’t want to go for a full blown suit, a nod to the trend can be achieved with just one statement piece such as this River Island Black Printed Tee, £20 which could be worn with skinny jeans at the weekend or used to vamp up your work wardrobe.
If you feel that a head to toe 70s print may attract a few odd looks around the office, then make the trend more wearable by just selecting a pair of patterned trousers such as these floral print trousers from Warehouse, £50, which look great with a plain black or white tee or vest at the weekend, or dressed up with a sheer black blouse and blazer for work.
Prints at Work
I tend to find that for most of my clients this season, the geometrics are going to work for my business women clients who work in an office environment, using the geometric print in the form of blouses, jackets and smart dresses, teamed with block colour to make the print more wearable. For instance this Scarf Print Blouse from Warehouse, £45
Off Duty Prints
Floral prints I find are great for work or smart casual as they can be dressed up and down more and come across as a little more subtle. For instance, this Phase Eight Kara Print Dress, £89 is perfect for a women who has quite a classic style and needs clothes for a lifestyle that involves entertaining at home – where this dress can be paired with leggings and flats for an effortless, off-duty look. Perhaps shopping or coffee with friends – this dress can be worn with flat riding style knee boots and a blazer for a more glamorous day look. Or perhaps an evening meal out – in that case, opaque tights, black heels and a clutch will do the trick!
Colours of Autumn / Winter Prints
The variety of colours available in floral prints seems to work for a greater number of my clients, wereas the geometric prints tend to be focussed around a lot of 70s colours which tend to suit women with more of a retro style.
I’m definitely more a florals girl personally – I just prefer the look of them on me, wereas geometric prints make me look quite dated as it just isn’t my style. However I have a very quirky and cool client – even her house is retro and full of personality – the geo prints will definitely be one for her as opposed to the florals.
This Karen Millen blossom print cardigan, £99 looks effortlessly stylish for autumn with a pair of luxe silk joggers or is perfect for the office with this season’s must-have black leather pencil skirt (or it will update a black pencil skirt you have had sitting in the wardrobe for years). This cardigan will also look great over any LBD for a night out when you want a little more coverage.
AUTUMN / WINTER STYLE TIPS
Although on the runway prints are being shown as flamboyant, head to toe, ‘here I am’ statements, prints are perfectly acceptable when worn in one statement piece with the remainder of the outfit toned down. Don’t feel the need to go all out if this doesn’t fit in with your usual Style ID.
For patterned or printed trousers, go for cropped ankle length to keep the look modern.
If you worry that prints and patterns may not work for your body shape, use accessories such as this season’s must-have printed clutch instead.
If you prefer your upper body – wear prints on top. If you like your legs – wear prints on the bottom half! Simples.
Have a stylish autumn winter 2012!
PS – Post any of your autumn winter fashion trend queries to me on Twitter @stylecompanion or get in touch on our facebook page.