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How to make your liberty florals more fashion forward

Updated: Apr 13, 2021

Liberty style florals are back in the limelight this season, having played a pivotal role on many recent runways. Sara, our head of design and strategy explains how to create a Liberty in step with the contemporary styles we are seeing.

Layouts to try:

 “This print might look simple at first glance but is actually quite complex to create,” she says. “One of the best ways to give Liberty a feeling of newness is to experiment with your layouts.”

Try this:

+ Place the micro florals on a diagonal or even in a patched pattern to create dimension and interest.

+ Create clusters of florals and disperse them in different densities around your canvas.

+ Place your elements in a shape like a diamond or square for a sportier spin.

A twist on the elements:

“There are a bazillion ways to paint your little flowers but a few specific styles really stand out this season,” she says.

Try this:

+ Draw your line work in colour (not black) and then use a more naive hand to colour in the elements. Don’t worry about filling in the lines perfectly as this off registration look gives it authenticity and a vintage vibe like Zimmermann has done recently.

+  Give it a more rustic look with a micro floral sans key lines, like Isabel Marant. “It’s a nice, flatter vintage style,” Sara says.

Colour it contemporary:

As with any style, the quickest, most impactful way to update a print is with a fashion-foward colour palette.

Try this:

+ For a younger look try a simple two tone print. We love a buttercup ground colour with white florals on the top, like ASOS has done.

+ Stick to the more nostalgic colour palette with yellows and burnt shades with feminine highlights.

+ Make sure you use a few key pop or highlight colours. The latest collection at Zimmermann features little bolts of bright tangerine.

Think about styling

 It’s good to know not only how your design will be used in a garment, but how it will be worn by it’s buyer. Horror Vacui demonstrates how cool Liberties can look when layered together.  “We love the dark colour way mixed with the light colour way to really create a classic vintage look,” Sara says.

If you’ve read many posts here on you’ll know that trends are Our Thing. The whole purpose of this place is to stay ahead of them and know what will be popular in textile design over the next few years. We spend a great deal of time — and money —  investing in this research so that our designs hit the mark with clients and the fashion industry at large, all. The. Time.

Yep, it takes work. If you’re in the fashion biz, you’ll already know this part is vitally important. And perhaps you have your own strategies for staying ahead and they are working well for you. If they are, that’s great. But if you’re finding it a battle to sink countless hours into research AND have enough time to craft your designs (and even then you’re not sure if you’ve made the most fashion-forward choices) then have a peek at our trend report offerings.

We provide both fully comprehensive yearly subscriptions and a little bundle of trends to dip your toe in. We couldn’t recommend this resource more highly. It will free you up to design, give you more confidence in your work and ultimately, help you sell more designs!


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