Designers on both sides of the pond seem smitten with gingham this season. There is an unpretentious vibe to this humble check that works well for flounced peasant dresses or crisp shirts. Gingham (or Vichy in France) turns up in traditional red-and-white or blue-and-white combos, but turquoise, yellow or other colors work too. Cotton is classic, while chiffons and sheer voiles elevate the look. There are even painterly dye effects that imitate the check, bringing a modern edge to the time-honored yarn-dye pattern.
After a fall season awash in tartans, the preference for plaids shows no signs of slowing down. For warmer weather there are crisp plaids for lightweights coats, tailored pants or easy dresses. Plaids are used head-to-toe in matched sets or jumpsuits, or as separates ensembled with florals or other plaids. Yarn-dyed checks look especially fresh for pattern-blocking, as in a twisted dress with contrasting plaid panels. The big plaid shirt is still a statement piece, worn on its own or tied around the waist for a post-grunge layer.
MAD FOR PLAID
Plaids lose their winter connotation and move boldly into spring. Runways are awash in yarn-dye suitings, plaid chiffon dresses, tartan coats, overprinted windowpane checks, plaids on the bias and more, either worn as a statement piece or combined into one ensemble. Styling ranges from neo-grunge to preppy, and colors can be classic or offbeat. In general, the scale of the patterns are large, but specifics don’t really matter here — if it’s plaid, it works.