Polka dots and stripes are prominent additions to prints for this season. All polka dots and stripes are not created equal. Let’s look at them more closely and see which iteration might have a place in your spring wardrobe.
Polka dots have a fun feeling to them. They are round, active and remind you of balloons and balls – fun. When I took classes at UCLA my professor said polka dots were frivolous. I have come to the conclusion that tiny polka dots with little space between are, indeed, frivolous. However, larger polka dots with more space between have much more stability. These polka dots are still fun but with a much more sophisticated feel. This dress with accents of large polka dots is a great example.
Stripes in women’s fashion are generally horizontal, projecting a serene message. Think of a landscape with the horizontal lines of fields. Turn the stripes into a diagonal, and they project an active, dynamic image. Think of how a lovely meadow conveys serenity while mountains project action. Vertical stripes remind us of attention; an erect, soldier-like image. Men’s pinstripe suits have a formal, business like persona.
When stripes are used in women’s fashion, they can vary in width as well. The wider the stripe, the more impact it makes. I noticed the first stripes that appeared in the fashion cycle this year were in black and white. This contrast is dramatic to begin with so a very wide stripe in black and white can only be pulled off by a wearer with a lot of attitude or a strong presence. By softening the color palette, a wide stripe loses much of its impact. This is softer palette is much better for a blonde, or someone with a soft presence.
When varied widths and/or colors are used in stripes, the look becomes much more sporty. Notice this lovely long formal gown with stripes. The bright orange and size variation of the stripes would work perfectly if you have that “all American girl” appearance. With polka dots,
varied colors take on a more frivolous feel and are more sporty. This is just FUN! If your facial structure has lots of angles and your brows are straight, stripes will be excellent for you. If you face is soft with lots of rounded lines, polka dots will be your friend. If you have a combination of rounded and straight lines, you can wear either print.
Have fun choosing the right look for you.