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Fashion notes: Get ahead on summer prints

As usual with the ultra fast-paced fashion industry, spring/summer collections are trickling into the stores just as we were celebrating the winter weather. Although a cooler climate may be guiding your outfit choices at the moment, don’t feel pressured to dress solely in dark hues and moody winter florals. Instead, embrace next season’s fashion offerings early and incorporate them in your wardrobe now.

There are a couple of different patterns on the horizons for spring/summer ready-to-wear. Bold and exotic Eastern designs feature cherry blossoms and origami-inspired prints on silk kimonos and pyjama-inspired garments. Basic ginghams continue their reign on tunics and dresses, busy, cartoonish graphics are still scrawled across shirts and jackets, and Victorian florals appear in bloom on full skirts and feminine dresses. These are all great for summer, but there’s no reason why vivid prints in light or bright hues can’t be applied to wintertime.

There are a couple of easy tricks to “winterfy” your summer garments while styling for cooler temperatures. For instance, if you have an oversized top or tunic with a pretty floral or tropical pattern, wear it with a pair of leather leggings. On the other hand, if your skirt or trousers feature summer prints, a chunky sweater or a ribbed turtleneck will give the outfit a new identity. And then there’s my favourite: slip a fitted turtleneck under a summer dress for a look that’s both pretty and practical.

While some women perceive a faux fur vest to be an ideal way to warm up a cheery print, the result can look bizarrely mismatched. Rummage through your drawers for simple accessories. Grungy combat boots, metallic ankle boots or woolly, over-the-knee socks can make a bright floral ensemble an effortless winter touch. Alternatively, a thick velvet choker may be all you need to give your look that season-less edge.

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