I think it’s fairly safe to say that the familiar image of the American flag is enough to strike fear into even the most brave of hearts currently. That the prints to emerge as the favourites of all the many patterns on offer (overshadowing the perma-present animal prints and classic polka dots) are the components of the star spangled banner, is nothing short of ironic. After all, the spring 2017 collections were designed way before the eyes of the world turned to Washington D.C. last November.
Near where I live there is a boutique, Katie & Jo, whose eye-catching window is currently resplendent with midi dresses by new design team Rixo. The display is so unselfconsciously upbeat that every time I walk past to buy a pint of milk or a coffee, I find myself slowing down and just staring, wondering which of the three I would have if I was made to choose. I stop short of pressing my nose up against the window but that’s only because of my age, otherwise I would. Similar images catch my eye on Instagram (most recently pieces from label A Postcard from Brighton at boutique Lolly and Mitch) and it is those which slow down my scrolling action to press ♥. Suddenly hard lines and monochrome don’t feel right, they’re just not as fun or as easy on the eye.
As discussed last week with all the frothy evening gowns in Hollywood, we need distraction and colour right now and stars and stripes can’t help but raise a smile. Think of a stripey, starry thing – candy canes, deckchairs, a clear night sky, pyjamas, disco balls, a well done star sticker under your homework and breathe – you can tell I’ve started going to yoga. Not thinking about Donald Trump now though are you?
This is quite a bold statement to make and many of the colours are bright so if stepping out in a print is departure enough, then wear the statement in your accessories. There are lots of starry scarves to choose from on the high street but this one from Mango features softer more spring like colours – just in case winter lets up… you never know.
Finally, a word of warning, these stripes aren’t your everyday Breton variety so look before you leap! Avoid looking like a clown by keeping your outfit close fitting rather than voluminous – voluminous is fine for floaty dreamy stars but a flyaway vertical stripe could stray into escaped convict territory so think neat. The only other suggestion I would make is perhaps don’t wear your stars and stripes at the same time. Personally, I’m going for the stars this season because as I said to my six year old son when he pointed at the lines on my forehead and asked how he could get some ‘stripes’ too; you have to earn those. Now I wonder if I can get Botox with a Groupon voucher?