Magpie Style - Blooming Explosive
Pack your bags, we're taking you on a guided tour into the art of wearing botanical and tropical prints. These new collections provide just the escape without even travelling abroad.
Kentia leaf, bamboo, perennial flowers and birds are reminiscent of long balmy nights and warm days ahead. These prints can often seem flamboyant, at first glance. With a few styling tips here’s how to apply them into your everyday wardrobe with ease.
The print lowdown
Botanical or tropical - what's the difference?
Botanical prints conjure up images of blooms in the garden alongside flying birds in and elements of nature. The tropical print features lush palms, or foliage, exotic birds and wild bamboo in bright colours.
Pictured below: Left - The tropical kentia print from the new Paula Ryan collection. Right - Botanical garden print.
Where does one begin with bright prints? The key to making this effortless is to start with something that you can wear often. This Spring the printed shirt is a key look offering an easy entry point into wearing prints. They can be teamed with anything for almost every occasion. Dress it up with black pants, down with jeans, or with a tailored in a more corporate environment. The options are limitless.
Pictured below: PAULA RYAN Overshirt $490
This shirt is a classic style and is longer through the body. Available now in Dijon (yellow), Vanilla (ivory) and Lipstick (pink) colours.
Below: Left; Lipstick, Right; Vanilla Kentia prints.
Pictured below from left: COOPER Shirt Changed Shirt $479, COOPER Loose Lips Shirt $599.
Below: Prints worn with denim is a great casual look for day.
Pictured below: To amplify the look for work or create a more tailored style, pair prints with dark black trousers or a pencil skirt.
Events such as the races, or weddings can call for a stand out dress, so use it as a colourful backdrop to set the scene. Begin with the dress and develop the rest of your outfit from there. If the the dress features a bold tropical or botanical print, opt for plain coloured heels and an exotic straw or matching bag. Using a contrasting monotone bag, shoes and hat will take it the outfit new heights.
Post event, a good way to rejuvenate a bold printed dress, is to wear it with your favourite flats and a leather jacket or denim jacket for a chic everyday look.
Pictured below: PAULA RYAN Halter Neck Pleated Dress $985
Pictured below: TRELISE COOPER Kill Them With Kindness Dress $699.
If you find the prospect of wearing print top-to-toe overwhelming - especially too close to your face, try a printed skirt or pants with a plainer top to calm the overall look.
Wear a monotone top, this will still allow the skirt or pants to shine. A denim shirt will work for a casual look, as well as a white top for freshness. Black will go well if the skirt or pants have black highlighted in the print as seen in the picture below.Skirt-a-holic Skirt $449
Pictured below: PAULA RYAN Fluted Skirt $590 and PAULA RYAN
Shaped Hem Jacket $530
Pictured below: A denim shirt will transform a bright printed skirt into a modern casual look for day.
Black as a base colour works well for prints and is easy to style with other pieces in your wardrobe - especially for after-dark.
Black-based florals layer effortlessly when styled with a black blazer or leather jacket. If it is your jacket that features the print, try with white pants or a jeans for a fresh Spring look.
To accessorize, choose one colour within the print and use that as your base choice for shoes and bag.
Pictured below: COOPER Into The Woods Dress $599
This style of dress can be worn all year round. Wear with black opagues and boots on cooler days and nights.
Pictured below: CURATE Tie One On Dress $279
Pictured below: CURATE Off The Cuff Blazer $299. The blazer looks stunning with white jeans or skirts as it features white also within the print.
Pictured below: PAULA RYAN Yukata Kimono $695. Wear over a black coloured simple dress to bring out the colours in this mixed print style.
Pictured below: PAULA RYAN Drape Front Skirt $490, available in Indigo Kentia.
Mix it up
Nature is intended to mix and match. In the wild minimalist plants grow alongside bright intricate flowers, so it is only natural to want to mix unexpected and contrasting prints. To achieve this, ensure one print is stronger than the other. Keep the contrasting prints like spots and stripes as your supporting print, this will allow the tropical or botanic prints to take centre-stage.Pictured: This top features a finer stripe rather than wide stripe, allowing the printed pants to take centre-stage.
Enjoy our weekly fashion stories? Sign up here to receive them in your inbox every Saturday morning.