Article of the week: the floral maxi dress

What is it:

The floral maxi dress is a trend that is constantly evolving, becoming a piece of clothing that never really goes out of style. Particular styles that caught the eye on the AW22 runways were oversized, blocky florals or more delicate florals, often paired with paisley prints. Each pattern featured a different take on the floral dress, with bolder prints in more modern shapes and intricate patterns that possess qualities reminiscent of fashion trends of the past. Silhouettes on the runways also varied, with some designers opting for exaggerated shapes, a new take on the floral dress, while others stuck to familiar cuts like a cami or cocktail dress. Anyhow, it seems that the floral dress will once again set the tone for the industry for the upcoming season.

Image: Madewell

Why you want it:

A floral maxi is a sure addition to a collection as it regularly reappears as one of the key trends for the spring and summer seasons. However, with the new iterations seen on the AW22 runway, it’s clear that this is a dress style that will be seen more frequently throughout the year. Many of these designs used long sleeves and a layered silhouette, making them better suited to the colder months. The prints presented for this season were also very diverse, bringing many different style options to the table for those looking for something that closely fits a specific brand identity.

Image: Superdry

Where we saw it:

Arguably the most notable adopter of the floral maxi dress, Richard Quinn debuted a range of exaggerated dresses on the brand’s AW22 runway. Striking floral prints encased balloon dresses, often paired with a dark underlayer of latex bodysuits. Rejina Pyo also opted for eye-catching floral prints that seemed to hold painted textures over the label’s casual cocktail dresses. Zimmermann’s AW22 collection, on the other hand, took influences from the hippie era of the 70s with flared hems and lots of tassels. This style was present in the brand’s long, flowing dresses, complete with floral patterns that subtly clash with paisley prints, either on tiered gowns or floor-length looks trimmed with pompoms.

Image: Nicowa

How to style it:

Depending on the print you choose, there are different ways to style the floral maxi. If you’re more inclined towards Zimmermann’s hippie vibes, pair the dress with a fringed vest, leather boots and a wide-brimmed hat to channel the ’70s look. On the other hand, if the print is more reminiscent of Richard Quinn’s bold all-over prints, go for color blocking, like a jacket in a contrasting hue and some light-colored boots. No matter what the print, a long coat always suits this style of dress. Add a chunky cropped sweater to bring the floral maxi into the colder seasons and make it a piece to wear all year round.

Image: Dorothee Schumacher

The floral maxi dress will always be a staple of fashion, returning each year with new silhouettes, print styles and textile techniques. And this year is no exception. It’s a style that can bring any collection to life as a statement look and can help define any desired identity or vibe a brand aspires to.

Image: Nice

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