Trend Report: Praise for Prints


Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Kate Jansen

Pairing plaid with seersucker is no longer taboo in the fashion world–whether it is snakeskin, art deco flowers or something in between, kooky and eccentric prints have been wildly popular this season. There has been quite an abundance of crazy printed pants, leggings, blouses, boots and accessories available in popular department and clothing stores recently. Although on the surface, zany zigzag and striped patterns may appear to be hard to match, these bold prints are nothing to shy away from this fall.

Like snowflakes, there is a certain unique beauty to the print trend: no two outfits are alike. This fall, it is acceptable to complement metallic snakeskins with loud color block (with limitations, of course). Fashion daredevils, this is your time to shine; feel free to mix and match–color palettes aren’t necessary!

It is easiest to assemble this look from, so to speak, the bottom up. First, choose pants, jeans or leggings with geometric flare (Topshop offers plenty of printed pants, as does Madewell, Anthropologie and Free People). Then, pick a blouse or knit tee with a different pattern. For example, pair tiny polka dot printed jeans with a horizontal pinstriped shirt. To soften the look, throw on a neutral, chunky sweater or cardigan. Surprisingly enough, the resulting outfit is aesthetically pleasing–that is, only if you use some creativity.

For those who aren’t as adventurous with mixing stripes with polka dots, start with one bold printed piece. There are a vibrant variety of zigzag pullovers and pebble-printed cardigans this fall. More conservative dressers can wear a solid-colored oxford shirt underneath their sweaters. For a more casual, dimensional look, pile on a variety of sheer tanks and long-sleeved knits before buttoning up your cardigan. Pull on a pair of black leggings or dark-washed skinny jeans and you’ll be ready for class.

The print trend doesn’t stop at tops and bottoms. Shoes can be patterned, too! Printed shoes are fantastic for fall because they come in a variety of styles and textures. My favorite right now is a pair of Keds polka-dot sneakers I bought from Madewell a few weeks ago. I love pairing these with skinny jeans, a lightweight, flowy top and an oversized geometric-printed scarf. The printed trend takes stylish staples to a funky and fashionable level.

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