I love flowers. Raununculus, anemones, dahlias, roses, tulips… I could go on and on. It seems indulgent, but its rare that I don’t have fresh flowers at home. Those small joys are worthwhile, I think, even if the cost does add up over time. Some people buy a latte every morning, while I buy myself flowers.
The funny thing is, despite my love of fresh blooms, I loathe floral prints. Yes, loathe – I don’t just mean that I don’t gravitate towards fabrics emblazoned with flowers, I actively dislike them. I have trouble understanding why perfectly lovely silk tops are so often spoiled by bright floral prints. When I shop, I often find myself wondering how there can be so many people buying all the floral garments that seem to exist.
Part of my distaste for floral prints is, no doubt, colour-based. My preference for neutrals means most prints of all varieties don’t suit my taste. But there’s more to it than just that. When I was six, my rose-print stirrup pants were the most chic thing I owned, as far as I was concerned. Years later, when floral leggings made a brief comeback, I purchased a pair that closely resembled them – but never truly felt comfortable wearing them. They felt too feminine, too ostentatious for everyday. Since then, my forays in wearing flowery prints have been few and far between. I fell head over heels for this dress in the spring. But our affair was brief and ultimately ended when I left it at a consignment store in Montmartre. After that, I swore off florals for good.
Fast forward to late August… just half a year later. I saw an instagram photo during my daily scroll and fell head over heels again. Not for a floral print, this time, but for a kimono. The one I spied was mint green, not at all my style. But the idea of a kimono felt so inspired, I had to have one of my own. The problem? Most kimonos have a floral print. And so, you will probably notice, does this one.
It took hours of browsing my favourite online shops before I stumbled, much to my surprise, on a black kimono with white flowers. This, I knew immediately, was a floral print I could love – and not just temporarily. I admit, I still feel like this print is too much to wear more than once a week. (I would notice if someone else wore the same floral every Tuesday, so I’m convinced people will notice if I do.) But on the one day of each week that I get it out, it brings a smile to my face every time. What’s more, it’s versatile – this is my third outfit with it, and I still have new styling ideas.
I’ve avoided prints for so long, but this kimono has given me pause for reflection. If I can find a floral that I love, it stands to reason there are other prints I could love, too – I just need to find the right version (by which I mean, one that is virtually devoid of colour.) Let’s just say I’m opening my mind, and my wardrobe, slightly, to some new sartorial possibilities. Tell me, what are your favourite prints to wear?