Fashion: Flower power can help to cultivate a new look

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Spring’s perennial print has gone a little bit wild. Lisa Haynes reveals how to wear oversized petals.

Bouquets may look pretty in vases, but why not try wearing your blooms too? There was a colourful explosion of botanicals on the spring/summer 14 catwalks, with dainty petals making way for statement florals.

Whether it’s one bold single stem or an explosion of hothouse flowers, florals have been cultivated on fast-grow fertiliser this season, so they’re almost wild in nature.

Peruse fashion’s flower shop and pick out your favourite bouquet.


Green-fingered designer Christopher Kane took flowers back to their roots, literally. Like something out of a science textbook, his dresses and sweaters featured floral buds spliced open to reveal their anatomy.

The high street hasn’t adopted the biology motif – yet – but you can still look blooming marvellous with a single floral statement.

Don’t go for half measures; opt for a print where the bloom takes over the entire piece. Keep your floral fresh with a white backdrop to make the petals really ‘pop’.

STYLING TIP: Ensure the solo bloom is the centre of attention with your look. If you’re wearing separates, co-ordinate with a plain neutral, or if it’s a dress, keep jewellery and accessories clean and minimal.


There’s no place for wallflower subtlety this spring. Catwalks like Marni, Armani and Hermes gave their floral bouquets a super-sized arrangement.

For an English country garden take, choose bold florals in a pretty pastel colour palette. The closer you go towards high summer, the more you can take your blooms into tropical territory with hot hues and rainforest foliage.

To really make a statement, try clashing your florals, using one matching colour to marry the look together.

STYLING TIP: If you want to take your florals into evening mode, plant them on a dark background, like black or navy. Bright and pastel florals suddenly take on a flamenco-inspired exoticness against such an extreme contrast.


Undoubtedly the prettiest blooms on the block, appliqued florals are this season’s uber-feminine alternative to prints.

Adorned with lifelike petals, Dolce & Gabbana’s models looked like they had sauntered through a flower shop with superglue stuck to their dresses.

Beware that heavily embellished florals can add bulk to your frame, so avoid in areas where you don’t want to add volume, but conversely, they can also add curves to athletic shapes.

If you prefer your petals to be less literal, look for embroidered flowers for less of a ‘3D’ effect.

STYLING TIP: Appliqued blooms are inherently fussy and fluttery, so ensure you have a clean silhouette to show them off. To really strip back the prettiness, opt for a black and white contrast that’s void of colour.


Flowers aren’t for everyone but this season, you can look to foliage as an alternative. Yep, the green extras used to bulk out flower arrangements have made it onto prints as a main focus.

Flowers, if present at all, should play second fiddle to this wild, leafy look.

How you wear your greens makes all the difference; go for sharp and structured for a contemporary look, or floaty and relaxed for more of a feminine, Seventies vibe.

STYLING TIP: You simply can’t avoid the colour green if you love this overgrown take on botanicals. Make sure you choose a tone that suits your complexion, whether it’s a deep forest green or soft minty pastel.

Imran Khan who designs and sells fabulous Asian style and inspired jackets and suits worn by celebs including Amir Khan and David Dickinson. His day job is at sports car dealershipe GC Motors in Harrogate. Picture Tony Johnson.

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