Newsletter

The grown-up guide to wearing print and pattern

— by Alyson Walsh

Photo: Clara Molden for The Daily Telegraph

 

I always think that I’m not a print person; that I’m someone who is far happier in my discreet uniform of classic navy and olive green than shouty florals and high-impact graphics, but maybe I’m mistaken… A quick review of recent outfits for my Telegraph column proves that there has been a small outbreak of pattern. Suddenly my wardrobe is peppered with statement prints tucked alongside hard-working not-so-basics and neutrals. The bold newcomers have been introduced gradually: navy Breton stripes swapped for more colourful parallel lines, polka dots for swirling paisleys and while I’m not really a fan of ditsy florals, I dig a retro-fabulous pattern or graphic design.  Worn in this low-key way, outstanding prints make perfect sense, and more importantly, they feel like me.

When you’re wary of bold prints, a top is a good starting point for some pattern play as it can easily be tempered with faded jeans, track pants or a maxi skirt. This eye-catching blouse from La Double J is an absolute winner, and the elegant black maxi skirt from COS makes the perfect backdrop. Pairing print with simple, wardrobe staples avoids an outfit descending into Grey Gardens territory…

Wearability is also down to the colour combination. I feel comfortable and at ease in my favourite hues, so by going for a familiar colour palette the fear of pattern ebbs away. The dark green base of this Marimekko shirt feels gorgeous and grown-up, and it blends perfectly with the Me+Em track-pants. While the print might be new, the slouchy silhouette is a tried-and-tested favourite. By keeping things simple and faff-free, I’m well within my Casually Glamorous comfort zone.

 

Photo: Clara Molden for The Daily Telegraph

 

Now, tell me, how do you wear print?

 

My favourite shops for print play: Essential Antwerp, La Double J, Boden, Scotch and Soda, Stella Jean, Pink City Prints, Kemi Telford, Phoebe Grace and Rixo.

 

STYLE NOTES:

The gorgeous blouse I’m wearing in the top picture is from LaDoubleJ – it’s called the Happy Wrist Bell-sleeve blouse in Peacock – from Matches (now sold out). The skirt is my own from Cos, similar HERE. The sandals are from Joseph, last few sizes available HERE. The earrings from Bar Jewellery.

In the second outfit I’m wearing a blouse by Marimekko, from Fenwick. It’s now sold out in all sizes but 10, but they have some ace prints in the ‘new in’ section HERE. The satin track-pants are from Me+Em HERE, the knotted sandals are from Russell+Bromley HERE and the jewellery is from Bar.

All items except the skirt identified as my own, were loaned and returned after the shoot.

 

*Please note: That’s Not My Age uses affiliate links to gain a small commission on items purchased through the site

 

Keep Reading

Feel-good books to read in celebration of Design Month

  I always think that I’m not a print person; that I’m someone who is far happier in my discreet uniform of classic navy and olive green than shouty florals and high-impact graphics, …