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Motifs á la mode

  • Published at 02:58 pm February 5th, 2020
fashion week 2

Reading the fine print in SS20

Prints are a fun way to add visual interest to an outfit, and here are the fresh prints we’ll be rocking all season.

Garden party

If there’s a no-brainer when it comes to SS print trends it’s that you can expect a whole buffet of floral prints. This season, the flowers tend towards intricate detailing, or large, painterly blooms. Roses enjoyed a surge in popularity. The devastating forest fires in the Amazon and Congo, and finally the Australian bush fires have definitely put our disappearing forest canopies on our minds, so expect to see a lot of tropical prints as well. There’s also a tactile element to this season’s most popular florals, so now would be a good time to dig up some Kashmiri embroidery.

Polka will never die

When the world is going to hell in a hand basket, sometimes what one needs is a fun print to help find enough cheer to persevere. And what’s a cheerier print than the quintessential polka dot? These dots dominated the global runway, and add that perfect dash of merriment to an outfit.

Between the lines

Another staple print that never quite goes away are stripes. SS20’s stripes alternate chunky lines with slimmer ones to create that retro bowling alley feel. Stripes in menswear favour the gangster pinstripes, and jaunty horizontal marine stripes.

For the love of geometry

We may have entered our own version of the 20’s, but the prevalent mood is far closer to the 1970’s. As Erik Davis of LitHub so succinctly puts it – “So many of the era’s bummers resonate with our own: fears about terrorism and environmental collapse, surveillance paranoia, political cynicism, foreign war fatigue, and a pervasive apocalyptic undertow that tugs beneath an over-heated, desperately sexualized, fantastical, and often bleak popular culture.” Small wonder then, that this mood manifests itself in a penchant for psychedelic prints popular in that decade. Checkerboards, intersecting lines and symmetry rendered in bold colours are back with a vengeance and a desire to escape.

An organic endeavour

One thing that really dominated the BFW20 is the emphasis on handloom textiles and organic dyes. Be it batik or sashiko, tie-dye is gaining momentum as a colourful, earth-friendly way of wearing our creative expressions. As fast fashion falls under scrutiny, these age-old practices might just be cutting edge enough to save the industry without harming the planet.