Flowers have served as inspiration for artists and scientists alike since the beginning of time. From drawings on cave walls to acclaimed paintings in museums to refined flower patterns on expensive fabrics, flowers are everywhere.
And the best part is that they continue to mesmerize our eyes and spirit even today. A floral pattern on a wavy dress can fill you with joy, but so can a stylish earring shaped like a bloom. Both these items showcase craftsmanship and uplift the spirits of the wearer and the admirer.
So, let’s have a look at how you can use the magic of flowers (real or stylized) to uplift your style.
Flowery Patterns and Fashion are Long-Time Friends
Florals have been a favorite motif in fashion for centuries, blossoming with social and cultural significance on various fabrics.
In the East, during the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD), chrysanthemums, peonies, and lotus flowers began to decorate Chinese silks. Simultaneously, across Japan, during the Nara period (710-794 AD), native flora inspired patterns that would flourish into today’s renowned kimonos.
The Byzantine Empire also used flowers on textiles to symbolize wealth and status. This trend spread through Europe as trade routes expanded. However, it took until the Industrial Revolution for flowery patterns to take root in Western fashion en masse. Inventions like the Jacquard loom made intricately patterned fabrics more accessible.
Closer to our days, the 1960s and '70s saw an eruption of floral motifs, mirroring the era's social revolutions. Bold, psychedelic prints epitomized the counterculture movement, as young people advocated for love and peace in a time of upheaval.
Nowadays, due to the development of digital printing technologies, we have high-definition floral designs on a scale never seen before. This allowed high-end fashion houses to combine intricate handcrafted designs with cutting-edge techniques to create complex and vivid floral textiles.
As a result, today's flowery patterns are as diverse as global culture itself, and everyone can find the ones that represent them the best.
Tips on How to Turn Your Wardrobe More Flowery
1. Custom Prints
The best way to bring a dress, shirt, or any other item of clothing to life is by adding a custom floral print to it. You can let your imagination run wild and forgo any rules to create designs that stand out and showcase your uniqueness.
Of course, you can also color within the lines and still create gorgeous floral masterpieces that will adorn your shirts for years to come. For instance, you can mix smaller petal prints with larger botanical designs to radiate confidence in your stylistic choices.
Overall, whatever design you choose, you’ll end up with a unique custom shirt that you love. And, if you’re not sure what works for you, read about the secret language of flowers and what messages they send out into the world.
2. Fresh Flowers
If you’re looking for freshness and don’t care much about permanency, then integrating fresh flowers into your wardrobe is the best course of action.
Use a fresh bloom to give your outfit a boost of elegance and style. But make sure to maintain the balance between simple and elegant. For instance, when participating in joyful events, you can fasten a single magnificent bloom, a tasteful sprig, or an elegantly arranged boutonnière to your lapel or waistband.
A tip? Opt for hardy varieties like orchids or succulents that withstand hours away from their roots while retaining their splendor. Also, an exotic orchid will catch the eye without overpowering your outfit.
3. Combine Accessories and Flowers
You can also incorporate small floral elements through accessories. A pair of earrings shaped like petals or a scarf patterned with blooms can inject vibrancy into even the most basic outfit without overwhelming the senses.
If you want to use real flowers as accessories, try to see if floral crowns work with your outfits. A minimalist garland with small, delicate blooms and greenery whispers sophistication and makes you think of summer tea parties.
Your hair and flowers are also a match made in heaven. Tuck a spray of baby's breath or a subtle lily behind your ear when donning an updo. It infuses romance into your style with a little bit of floral grace.
Also, if your style leans toward bohemian chic, you may enjoy wearing a wrist corsage or a delicate floral anklet. The wrist corsage can be reimagined as a statement bracelet using delicate flowers strapped on with sleek ribbons or thin chains, while a simple chain of daisies or small white flowers looks charming with summary sandals or open shoes.
Lastly, let’s not forget about your other accessories, like bags or clutches. You can add a splash of color to your wardrobe by adorning your clutch or handbag with your favorite flowers. This will add texture and color that harmonizes with your overall look.
4. Flower Patterns
You don’t have to design your own prints or find ways to integrate fresh flowers and accessories into your wardrobe. You can simply take the easiest way and learn how to integrate already existing floral patterns with your outfits.
Here are a few tips to help you get started:
- Pay attention to the scale – The size of the floral pattern should compliment your frame and personal style. Smaller, subtle prints can add a touch of femininity to your look without being overpowering, while bolder, larger florals make more of a statement and work well for confident fashion moments.
- Mind the palette – Floral patterns can range from soft pastels to deep, saturated hues. To keep things on the same line, choose colors that fit within your existing wardrobe palette. For instance, a monochromatic floral pattern can provide texture without color chaos, adding sophistication and depth.
- Balance with solids – To keep flowers from overwhelming your outfit, pair them with solid colors drawn from the pattern itself. This not only tames the print but also creates an effortlessly coordinated appearance.
- Play with proportion – Combine different proportions in your attire by pairing a fitted floral blouse with a wide-leg trouser or A-line skirt. This way, you’re grounding fancy floral patterns with structured pieces, maintaining an air of elegance.
- Mix prints carefully – If you're feeling adventurous, consider mixing florals with other prints. The trick is to ensure one print dominates while the other accents it. For example, a muted stripe or delicate polka dot can harmonize with more outspoken flowers.
Since time immemorial, flowers and their patterns have captured our creative spirit, infusing fashion with nature's intricate designs. With a dash of imagination and some innovative tools at your disposal, your wardrobe can blossom in a myriad of ways.
So, don’t be afraid to embrace the vibrancy of bold patterns and the vivacity of colorful florals! They carry an inherent elegance that, when melded with the right companions, creates an ensemble that’s as sophisticated as it is spirited.