Straight to Print: Gingham Is Having A Moment
Molly Goddard SS17
Unless you’ve been living under a fashion-proof rock this season, you’re probably aware that gingham is very much having a moment (again). However, despite the fabric appearing in multiple high end catwalk spring/summer collections for this year, it had far more humble beginnings.
When your dress matches the tablecloth, Vogue US 1944
Originally exported to Europe in the 17th century, gingham became popular for much the same reasons as denim: it was cheap and easy to use. Convenience-wise, this cotton-weave fabric was a piece of cake to work with, as it was identical on both sides and the thread was dyed (traditionally blue or red) prior to the weaving process. Gingham’s affordability made it perfect for kid's clothes such as school uniforms - this fond, yet slightly prim, memory might be your gingham trigger; or maybe it makes you think of cowboys (or tablecloths). Regardless, the reimagined styles of Spring/Summer 17 give gingham a whole new resonance. No Dorothy-style dresses, parlour checks or Wild West prints here, these styles are cool, body confident and bold.
Molly Goddard SS17
London-based designer Molly Goddard gave us grown up gingham with her SS17 collection. Ruching and sheers made this fresh fabric a little bit hot while pastel and fluro shades introduced thoroughly modern versatility with an endless possibility of colours and tones. The presence of the pastel pink shades cleverly evoked the delicate femininity with which this fabric has so long been associated and oversized ruffles gave us one frock, two trends.
Hannah Weiland’s Shrimps label also ventured down the gingham path for SS17 with glorious green gingham that was minty fresh. Wrap fronts, side ties and oversize silhouettes produced looks that sat somewhere between school dress and hipster uniform.
Swedish Fashion Talents
For those nervous of head to toe tablecloth, gingham doesn't have to involve an entire image investment - designer Lavanya Coodly, for example, included gingham scarves in her Autumn collection, proving that this is a fabric with much more staying power than just for summer. During the Swedish Fashion Talents show at Stockholm Fashion Week it was applied to single pieces for example classic shirts as above (and not a stetson in sight).
Henry Holland SS17
However, for those who just don't do trends unless immersed in them from ankle to neck, Henry Holland is the label to choose. His SS17 80s inspired ruffled creations were a whole bonfire of influences - repurposed school uniforms, flamenco ruffles and reworking that flounciest of styles, the ra ra skirt. There was a gingham hit in almost every piece.
If for some reason gingham is never going to be your print of choice, we also noted that its traditional red and blue shades were echoed in another classic summer print this season: stripes. Romanian brand Ludmila Corlateanu wove these true gingham shades through super cool striped dresses - we love the uniform-esque details, such as the pretty, prim collar, contrasted with the half and half fabric prints for a more playful take on a trend.
By Elizabeth Kennedy and The Glass Pineapple