Florals? For Spring? Groundbreaking.

By Caitriona McGovern

It is that time of year again when the best of us often find ourselves caught off guard, a sort of unavoidable yet inevitable conundrum: still wrapping up in the layers of winter, yet prone to feeling overstimulated and overheated as the days become more humid. The weather and, in turn, outfits can be difficult to predict, especially amidst a climate crisis where weather patterns vary greatly. 

Picture it: coffee in hand, hair tousled and tangled with lip gloss. Bag slipping off the shoulder. Too cold to not wear a jacket, plus it is forecasted to rain?! As we navigate this delicate equilibrium between winter’s chill and spring’s tentative warmth, the clothing transition between winter and spring can leave us feeling in sort of a middle ground, a limbo essentially. However, the silver lining – the days are getting brighter. 

And so is the spring colour palette. The infusion of vibrant hues dominated Susan Fang’s FW 24 collection, making it one of my standout AW shows from London Fashion Week. While the garments themselves were rich in colour and ingenuity, they are not the focal point of this piece. Rather, it was the designer’s collaboration with Nike for the show that truly stood out. Fang skillfully deconstructed and reinterpreted classic Nike shoes such as the Vomero 5, V2K, P-6000, and Air Max Scorpion FK using her signature 3D pen drawing technique.

The combination of athletic footwear with more glamorous ensembles is not a new concept, but this season it is experiencing a resurgence, as exemplified by Fang’s work. As spring approaches and temperatures rise, I anticipate seeing more of this trend. When executed thoughtfully, it can elevate an outfit, with comfort being paramount. One of my standout street-style looks from Copenhagen Fashion Week, featured an all-blue ensemble paired with runners, which truly enhanced the overall look. This is a trend that is here to stay.

Shifting from the realm of colour to print, one trend that appears to have cemented its place in the fashion industry is leopard print. Recognizing the enduring appeal of this pattern, two iconic brands—English heritage label Barbour and Scandinavian favourite Ganni—have come together in a collision of style. Following the success of their initial co-designed collection, the Barbour X Ganni collaboration returned with a second drop, solidifying its status as a statement-making partnership. 

As the transition to lighter jackets dominates with the shift in weather, this latest collection from Barbour X Ganni offers a plethora of leopard print options that surpass mere trendiness and evolve into timeless wardrobe essentials. Indeed, this collaboration exemplifies why leopard prints transcended the realm of passing fads, emerging as a perennial favourite. 

Another favourite that I anticipate to remain a spring staple is; bows. Irish designer Simone Rocha, known for her avant-garde creations, once again demonstrated her mastery of this timeless accessory in her Spring 2024 collection. Rocha’s long-standing affinity for bows predates their current popularity, and she continues to innovate with them in her designs. 

In her latest collection, bows took centre stage in various sizes and forms, serving as exquisite embellishments that added whimsy and charm to her garments. From dainty bows adorning cuffs and collars to extravagant bows cinching waists or cascading down the back of dresses, Rocha showcased the versatility of this classic adornment.

The ribbon-crafted details evoke the delicate intricacy of frosting on a wedding cake, meticulously positioned to accentuate the silhouette and infuse a hint of romance into the overall aesthetic. However, a stark contrast occurred when Rocha intertwined her show with a collaboration. There was definite juxtaposition between the softer hues and sheer fabrics with the harshness of the cult-favourite shoe brand, Crocs.

What binds Rocha’s hyper-romantic label and the revered shoe brand is their shared eagerness to ignite disruptive movements and engage in meaningful dialogue with consumers. This collaboration achieved just that. Featuring three distinct styles of crocs adorned with pearls, crystals, and jet beading, the collection seamlessly blends modern flair with delicate embellishments. 

One of my recent standout moments was seeing Ireland’s beloved actor, Cillian Murphy donning look 46 from the Rochas AW24 Collection at the SAG Awards. The pin-striped suit, paired with a nod to the bow as a tie, beautifully encapsulated the essence of the Rochas brand. The Spring and AW 24 collections further demonstrated the designer’s versatility in transforming ready-to-wear couture, solidifying her reputation as an innovator in setting trends – making her one to watch in the industry right now. 

Alongside the clichés of spring fashion that persist—cue Miranda’s infamous “florals for spring” declaration- new trends unfailingly emerge. Similar to the seasons, trends will pass; they are transient, a testament to the natural rhythm of the fashion world. Here, innovation and tradition converge, emphasising the importance of not succumbing to overwhelm amid the myriad of trends.

In the whirlwind of our digital era, where new trends seem to sprout overnight, it is crucial to ground ourselves and resist being swept up in the constant flux. If you find that you are constantly chasing after trends, you might find yourself with a wardrobe full of clothes, but feeling like you have nothing to wear as the allure of trend-based pieces diminish and attention shifts to the next big thing. Instead of blindly buying into trends, it’s beneficial to assess whether you envision yourself re-wearing and genuinely enjoying an item. This approach allows you to curate a collection of timeless staples that you’ll cherish. Remember to draw inspiration while also finding creative ways to restyle and reimagine pieces you already own and most importantly, wear what makes you feel good in yourself. After all, it’s better to be authentic and veer away from florals for spring… 

Images sourced via Pinterest, Susan Fang (Instagram), Fiona O’Neill Studios (Instagram), Simone Rocha (Instagram), Ganni, Image, British Vogue and HighSnobiety.

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