Fashion: No wallflowers or shrinking violets here

Pop star Tallia Storm at the National Television Awards wearing Dolce & Gabbana: Ian West/PA Wire
Pop star Tallia Storm at the National Television Awards wearing Dolce & Gabbana: Ian West/PA Wire
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In the mood for a little romance? When it comes to flowers, think unusual, striking and modern. Fashion editor Stephanie Smith on the new florals.

There’s nothing prim or proper about floral print for this coming spring and summer. Sensual, intriguing, daring, moody, even slightly confusing, all yes, but prim and demure? Never.

J by Jasper Conran dress, �69, at Debenhams.

J by Jasper Conran dress, �69, at Debenhams.

So, as much as we are in the mood for love this week, if you’re going to say and wear it with flowers, make sure you keep it interesting.

One way of achieving this in style is by taking a bold and graphic approach, seen best on the High Street at Debenhams, where designers Jasper Conran and Henry Holland are both flaunting distinctive, stylised flower patterns against rich one-colour backdrops ranging from soft pink to vivid blue. The dress over skinny jeans look by H By Henry Holland, featured on these pages, is an attractively edgy way to do floral print, sticking to a simple colour palette of two bright tones and subverting the pretty tea dress theme. Note the flippy sleeves, asymmetric hemline and side slash, too – details to love and ones which add that all-important interest without looking overly fussy or frilled.

Several High Street brands (see Wallis) take a patchwork approach to flower pattern, in fabrics that use contrasting colourways in blocks and panels of different shades. Look for loosely fitting dresses and skirts in floral patchwork pattern to team with sweaters or shirts in a bright one-colour shade, perhaps picking out one from the pattern.

Flowers and stripes together, on the same print, is another striking look (see the Dolce & Gabbana dress worn by Tallia Storm here), especially in black-and-white bold stripes, which gives a supernatural quality. Floral prints and polka dots give another cute take on the trend.

Floral tee, was �15, now �11.25, at Dorothy Perkins.

Floral tee, was �15, now �11.25, at Dorothy Perkins.

Floral maxi skirts are a spring and summer essential this year, to team either with one-colour tops or to try with checks, stripes, dots or a non-matching alternative floral print. Just make sure that you keep shapes balanced, so a flowing, long skirt with a cropped, fitted top.

There’s a super-interesting carnival-esque print coming with packed, chaotic florals in a mix of shades against an intensely bright sunshine backdrop. M&Co will be having a swimwear range in this print. Meanwhile, there is much yellow about as a backdrop, often featuring distinctive but actually quite romantic looking sprigs and blooms. It’s a contemporary way to zest up a delicate flower pattern.

Talent scout and founder of Fashion East Lulu Kennedy will be talking up-and-coming fashion with designer prodigies at this year’s Fashion in Leeds, which opens at the end of April as part of Leeds International Festival.

Fashion East nurtures UK-based fashion talent and has scouted designers from Gareth Pugh to Jonathan Saunders, House of Holland and Roksanda Ilincic. Kennedy will be in conversation on May 4 with successful alumni and current designers, including Matty Bovan, Per Götesson, Mimi Wade, and ART SCHOOL.

H! by Henry Holland Dress �40, Jeans �35 Red Herring Bag �30, Faith Shoes �29. At Debenhams.

H! by Henry Holland Dress �40, Jeans �35 Red Herring Bag �30, Faith Shoes �29. At Debenhams.

York-based Bovan, 26, graduated from Central Saint Martins in London in 2015 with an MA in Fashion Knitwear. He was shortlisted for the Fashion Awards 2017 in partnership with Swarovski, and presented his spring/summer 2018 collection at London Fashion Week, his third as part of Fashion East’s group show.

Fashion in Leeds will bring a week of high-profile events to the city from April 28 to May 6.

There will be fashion shows, exhibitions, workshops and talks, from the UK’s biggest fashion industry figures, and the colleges and High Street giants will all play significant roles.

Tickets for the Lulu Kennedy event are available now on the Leeds International Festival website, www.leedsinternationalfestival.com.

Yellow jumper and floral skirt, coming for spring to George at Asda.

Yellow jumper and floral skirt, coming for spring to George at Asda.

Email: stephanie.smith@ypn.co.uk

Twitter: @yorkshirefashQ

Instagram: @YPStyleTeam and @theypmagazine

Hope Ditsy iPhone 7 Embroidered Phone Case, �18 at Cath Kidston.

Hope Ditsy iPhone 7 Embroidered Phone Case, �18 at Cath Kidston.

Sue wears Super Chunky Cowl, from The Knitters Yarn kit, �50, and Rowan 'Caliban' pattern poncho in Rowan Brushed Fleece, �60.
 Alice wears Kim Hargreaves 'Emma' pattern in Rowan Big Wool, cost �63.

Picture Tony Johnson.

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