Flower Power: This Ain't No Hawaiian Shirt

You might be a big Don Ho, but it’s still totally inappropriate to rock your Tommy Bahama shirt out on the town. So don’t get things twisted when we say 2013 is the year of the flower. That’s right my friends, from Bottega to Gucci and all the way to Calvin, this season the boys in Milan were strutting their stuff in everything and anything floral. While on the runway the looks were a bit more exaggerated—think something out of The Birdcage—the runways must always serve as inspiration if not literal translation. So how do we make this work?

Here’s the deal: print was BIG in 2012 with plaids, stripes and patterns of all kinds taking center stage. In 2013 the trend pushes forward with the more adventurous floral print—daunting indeed, but still definitely doable and without a doubt cool. Rock this look in one of several ways. First, avoid traditional “Hawaiian” style shirts. Look for options in oversized, blown-up versions or shrunken mini prints. Second, either go totally muted and almost monochromatic or vear in the opposite direction with extremely bright and graphic-looking prints. Think unusual and quirky. The rest is all in the styling. 

I suggest sporting your louder options under a blazer or sweater, letting just enough flair do its work. For more muted and understated prints, go ahead and let them buck on their own. Sport a simple ensemble that lets your shirt take the focus and make sure that the funky floral is also fitted and styled with either an ultra preppy feel (a la K Swiss and khaki chinos) or a bit of rock and roll (add leather cuffs, ray bans and Converse Chuck Taylors). With all this said, you’ve got to be confident! Floral should be an accent that tricks out an outfit and brings it to another level. If you aren’t confident and you don’t feel comfortable mixing it into your style—don’t do it. You can definitely wind up looking like you’re one fanny pack short of a cruise. That being said, stay tuned for next year’s post on the great fanny pack craze of 2014...  ;) 

Some of my favorites below:

Maison Martin Margiela; $515 at Mr Porter

Ben Sherman; $95 at Nordstrom

Daniele Alessandrini; $126 on Far Fetch

Topman; $56

Gucci; $490 at Neiman Marcus

Golden Goose Deluxe; $134 on Far Fetch