One of the trends that announces the timely arrival of Spring is the appearance on online shelves and window-displays of the man’s shirt with all-over prints. The traditional rules of male elegance have already been broadened to include the printed shirt with floral patterns by Liberty of London; synonymous with quality and originality since 1875, these have been adopted by a long list of luxury brands, creating irresistible, exclusive capsule collections. They are characterised by floral patterns in various shapes and sizes and their sinuous movements are repeated symmetrically or mirrored with impeccable precision, reflecting the Art Nouveau style. They are paraded on top-class cottons and fluid fabrics such as silk and viscose for the shirts, blouses and dresses in the men’s and women’s collections, and have also found their role in the world of leather goods.
At the warmest time of the year, the linen shirt can be found in exotic variants, inspired by jungle themes in which feline shapes are inserted, as in a jigsaw, into stylised patterns that evoke typical fabrics from far-off places, like African wax prints and Indonesian batiks. Earth colours also play their part, ranging from burnt brown to sun-baked red, clay and yellow desert sand, to create attractive shirts in more informal variants – with mandarin collar and the open-necked bowling collar.
And perhaps not everyone knows that Elvis Presley was one of the earliest fans of the printed shirt with Hawaiian palm-tree patterns and it’s thanks to him that the tropical shirt became a cult, reworked today with digital graphics or a hand-painted effect.
The shirtdress, a centrepiece of the women’s collection, has been in perfect harmony with the print mood ever since its origins in the 1950s. In cotton – lightweight but with a structured shape – or floaty viscoses that follow the lines of the body, and right down to the practical linen model, it comes in contemporary floral prints or abstract multicolour patterns. Strictly tight-fitting at the waist, they may be worn with leather belts in various sizes to give an unexpected contrast, or in an even more trendy bustier version.
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