How to Style Floral Dresses
Posted on May 31 2016
As the weather moves from cool to warm to cool again we all enjoy showing more skin and wearing vibrant lipsticks that bring out our skin tone. Dresses that feature flowers and varied floral patterns are often our spring and summer staples. Should you opt for a flattering A-line dress, a skin tight bandage dress, or slip into a sexy bodycon dress? Are you going to pull off solids and stripes for chic and sophisticated flare or pick floral patterns to bring out your confident femininity?
In this article we cover the versatility of flower dresses and how to style them. Floral print dresses paired with the right accessories and outerwear are easily worn to alleviate the gloom of winter and fall and are reliable style options throughout the summer and spring.
While a floral dress is great in theory, the truth is that it may be a challenge to pull off. Flower patterns are hectic and full of a rainbow of colors. Which color is best to pull out? How do you style your hair and pick your shoes or accessories? These tips and tricks were compiled by stylist and fashion mavens to give you insights into answering these questions on how to style your floral dress.
How to Choose a Flattering Print
Floral prints are vast and indefinite. Choosing a print that is flattering and complimenting to your body and style is essential. There are various forms of flower prints that could mean small flowers spaced close together or spaced far apart for a gentle smattering of color. Featured flowers could showcase bold, bright, and large flowers, vines, or clusters of blooms. Often the color palette of the floral dress leans to one side of the chart ranging from pastels, darks, brights, metallics, and more.
Give your floral print an extra thought. Consider that larger flowers are more flattering to petite body types. Oversized floral patterns may add a few pounds to your silhouette and thus are not recommended for shapely women. Smaller flowers and floral patterns give the impression of a solid and are recommended for average to more shapely body types.
If your body type is slim to average consider exploring a balance of larger floral patterns and smaller patterns. When unsure if the pattern is flattering try to break up the pattern with a belt or trendy scarf.
Also be sure to consider the host background of your floral dress. White backgrounds that display bright and sunny inspired blooms are ideal for concealing problem bulges. Darker backgrounds give you a more tailored and tapered look to give your body the illusion of being more slim.
Floral Dresses Pair Great with Neutral Colors
Irrespective of whether you pick a big or small floral print dress, what you pair it with is pivotal to your look. Floral dresses that have an all-over floral motif that spreads uniformly over the fabric should be toned down and paired with neutral or nude colors. Neutral colors give your dress the ability to carry your floral and feminine style.
Neutral colors such as black, beige, white, nude, and silver generally compliment floral patterns and are often closet staples (so no extra shopping is needed). From your shoes to you jewelry to the bag you decide to carry, and your accessories adding the dollop of neutral shades to your dress ensures the floral print is balanced and in harmony with your style.
Pattern Clashes are Acceptable
When you do not want to tone down your floral dress and play it safe with neutral colors consider pairing your floral dress with other patterns to give you look edge and diva inspired sex appeal.
Often your fashion palate turns to solids when choosing something to pair with your floral designs. However, pattern mixing is acceptable and a simple way to appear trendy and stylish.
Pair your floral dress with an accessory that has a bold stripes design such as a bangle bracelet or cuff. Also consider choosing one or two colors from your floral pattern dress and matching all your accessories to those shades.
For example, a navy floral bodycon dress that showcases colors like red, yellow, and grey, is easily styled by choosing just two colors from the palette for the accessories. Opt for pumps or pointed-toe shoes in grey and throw on a red jacket, coverall, or scarf to give your look texture and depth. Similarly, pick accessories such as a hat, a bag, and your jewelry in these shades to complete the overall effect.
Adding bold contracting patterns and colors is a simply way to bring out the flowers and give your look a more fashion savvy polish.
How to Accessorize a Floral Dress
Floral dresses are inherently feminine and easy to add a dose of your own unique charm to. These dresses tend to be showstoppers on their own so it is often a challenge to pair the dress with accessories that add to the ensemble instead of detracting from it.
Since floral dresses tend to have bold, bright, and noticeable colors, pairing it with bold and colorful jewelry is a fashion faux pas. A floral dress of any color is best accessorized with pieces that are delicate, subtle, and simple. A statement jewelry piece may distract attention from the dress and clash with the bolder tones of your dress. It is better to opt for simple drop earrings or studs, a thin chain with a small and delicate pendant or locket, and a thin bracelet. The rule of thumb is that less is more. Keep your jewelry simple, a bit traditional, and classic.
Shoes have the power to make or break your floral dress. When it comes to floral dresses, particularly ones that have a bold or dark background palette, steer clear of wearing matching floral print shoes. Good quality floral bodycon dresses are best worn with neutral sandals, wedges, or stilettos. You could also pick one of the sober shades of the dress and match with the color of your shoes.
Another edgy idea is to pair your floral dress with all black accessories. By adding tough black accessories such as black gladiator stilettos or flats, black studs, slim black belt, and cross-body black bag, to your feminine floral bodycon dress, you create an alluring mix of chic and edgy style.
The best thing to do when choosing a handbag for your floral dress is to select a handbag that matches the most prominent color in your floral dress. If you think following this tip is going to make your overall ensemble too loud, tone it down with a solid neutral bag in basic colors such as blue, black, white, tan, or brown.
If your dress boasts floral prints in just two colors similar to our Sassy Black Rose Bodycon Dress, consider stepping off the beaten track and opting for a handbag in a solid, contrasting color such as red.
Those dabbling in fashion know that styling with different accessories often lead to a number of fascinatingly looks derived from the same dress. A belt is one such accessory that serves to add plenty of contrast and a pop of color to a floral dress. For example, a black-and-white floral dress works just as well with almost any contrasting belt color—both blue and red are very appealing options. On the other hand, if you have a multi-colored dress, choose one of the colors in your dress and pull it out with your belt.
Depending on the weather, you may or may not require any kind of outerwear on your floral dress. However, the addition of a leather jacket, light trench coat, or even a fitted jacket or blazer, gives your floral dress casual style that is both polished and chic. A blazer makes your floral dress office and workplace ready while a leather jacket offers an edgy look that grabs attention. Denim is also a favorite to pair with florals because it is basic and versatile.
The Best Makeup Trends for Floral Dresses
Bold floral patterns have a show-stopping presence that is difficult to imitate. In general, most makeup artists recommend opting for all neutral shades of makeup so as to not muddle with the floral print colors. However, it is also a stylish idea to pull one shade from your dress that lends itself well to your lipstick hue.
Keep in mind that it is best to either focus on playing up your lips or your eyes. Avoid highlighting both. Your dress is your best guide when it comes to the makeup you should go with. If your floral dress is bright and bold, opt for subtle makeup and consider a seductive lip gloss pout. On the other hand, if your dress has a lighter print or softer floral patterns and hues, then take your makeup up a notch with a bold lipstick shade or a soft smoky eye to pull the look together.
How to Style Your Hair for Flowers
If you are looking to channel your inner flower child, your hairstyle has an important role to play. The first step is to get shiny and healthy tresses that are suitable for the femininity of your dress. We cover how to get shiny hair in this post. For those who hate having strands of hair in one’s face on a hot summer days, gel your hair into a high ponytail or go for a messy bun.
Braids are also winners. Braid a lock of hair from each side of your head, and pin them together at the back. Add a summery texture to the hairstyle by pinning tiny flowers into the braided sections. Incorporate floral motifs into your hair bands and ties for that flirty Coachella look. Hairstyles and floral dresses give you tons of wiggle room to try various style together. A sleek ponytail keeps the dress chic and fancy while a messy bun gives it a relaxed and casual appeal.
Floral dresses are inspiring and ultra feminine. Although prints and patterns are often a challenge to pull off with a bit of concentrated effort your floral dress easily becomes just as versatile as your little black one. If you rather keep things simple and au natural then your floral dress is ideal. If you want to take it up a notch and show off your fashion sense then stick to contrasting patterns. For a nice balance consider our other mentioned tips.
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