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Sunday, 28 March 2021

What Would Grace Wear - Prints

Hello my lovelies.

Well in this post I’ve quite surprised myself!
I’ve always seen myself as being fairly anti print. 
I’ve always felt that I avoid print, and that’s because the pattern and colour have to truly speak to me before I wear it, otherwise it feels as though the print is wearing me.  

And I think that would be my top tip for selecting a print that doesn’t hijack your body, only wear a print that sings to you. 

Having said that, it truly surprised me when I put together this collage of prints because I discovered that it turns out that this anti-print girl actually wears quite a lot of print.
But you can be assured that each and every print sings to me,  each and every time I wear it. 

So let’s get stuck in!

Firstly, I’ve always thought of print as being the domain of the top or the dress. 

But prints work equally well on the bottom half, on trousers or skirt.

A toile de jouey is fabulous for spring and summer. 

A riot of carefully partnered colours is ideal. 

And when in doubt, go for the animal print.

Like me, (or so I thought!), Grace wears few patterns on average, and here’s a selection of her choices. 

Here are more prints I adore. 

A dress from 2005, worn last summer. 

This Zara print has the 40s vibe I’m drawn to. 

And this Primark print has a 70s vibe. 

Denim can be the perfect backdrop for showcasing prints. 

This yellow floral Next dress always shouts out to me “Summer’s here!”.  The season only starts truly when this dress gets its first airing. 

This print is L O U D, and again it invokes a feel of the 40s (yes, that era again!).  This is what I call a Carmen Miranda dress and you’ve got to be feeling happy and confident when wearing a print like this, otherwise the print and your mood fight all day!

Yet again, this East print in muted colours again echoes those favoured 40s. 

And although I’m not fond of checks (they make me feel claustrophobic), a plaid design breaks up the regimented squares enough for me to wear a lumberjack shirt occasionally. 

Though I appear to have been braver in 1966 and could carry off the more disciplined squares in this madras check print. 

Sometimes a pop of print via a scarf is all an outfit needs. 

Now this is my all-time favourite print.  Yup, it’s got that 40s vibe again, but here in dress style as well as print.
The added bonus is that it has the authentic 40s slightly padded shoulder thing going on too, so when I wore it last year I was bang on trend for the low-key shoulder pad thing that seems to be trending in 2021. 

And here’s this printed 40s dress in all its glory, seen at the 1986 wedding for which it was bought, and worn on younger and definitely slimmer model!

Hmmnn, on reflection, that all-time fave claim may not have been the whole truth.

For this print has to be up there in joint top position. 

From 1974, a forest green and stone printed silk maxi dress (expensive!) ... and yes, again with that 40s vibe (puffed padded sleeve, cinched waist, discrete pussy cat bow neckline). 

Well, Lordy Lordy!  In this post I’ve taken you through the 60s, 70s, 80s, made much reference to the 40s, and packaged it all up nicely with things more current.
What a journey!

So what have we covered today on this journey ?

My advice is very clear on prints - 
only wear a print that you wholeheartedly love, otherwise it will wear you. 

Only wear bold prints on days when your confidence can stand up to all their loudness.

And for me on this very personal nostalgia trip today, what I’ve learned is that my heart loves a 40s print specifically, and along with that, a 40s style of dress. 

Every day’s a school day eh! 

Is there a style of print or an era that sings to you?

Hugs, Mary x. 



  1. Well, for someone who says she avoids prints you do have a rather lovely collection of them.
    Is that girl on a bicycle really you??? I would never have recognised you, but the other incredibly beautiful young blonde ladies could only be your glamorous self xx

    1. Thank you for your sweet comments Jay. Well the number of prints surprised me too when putting tuiskk no piece together. And yes that’s 16 year old me on my dad’s bike. Funnily this weekend I’ve been in touch with a girl who knew me at the time and she said she remembered that dress. I said it’s probably because I had only two summer dresses and wore them on rotation!
      Hugs x.

  2. Love all your pink outfits, it my favourite colour and with the florals you've got a winning combination Mary. Jacqui x

    1. Thanks Jacqui, glad my pinks pleased you!
      Hugs x.

  3. I love all of these prints especially all of the pretty florals.

  4. Thank you for sharing your pretty print dresses with us, you have a lovely selection and you certainly wear them very well. Like you I love a good 1940s print and style whether it is a 1980s reproduction or an original. A few years ago I was lucky enough to find a very pretty original 1940s tea dress in a local vintage shop and love wearing it. Other people like to see it too and ask me if it is from the 40s. But I have a modern charity shopped dress too that people think is an original piece. I love them all.

    1. Ahh a fellow 40s fan! Sounds like you got yourself
      Some great finds, Alysia.
      Hugs x.

  5. LOVE the prints and styles from the 1940's-especially the shoes-why doesn't make those these days?? Thanks for sharing-hope all is well on your island-it's heating up here in my Southwest US desert home and the prints and linens are coming out!

    1. Hi Jules, it’s so great to hear from you. Oh the 40s shoes, my Aunty used to have a pair I dressed up in. Keep cool in the SW in your prints and linens!
      Hugs x.

  6. What a lot of lovely prints. I absolutely love your 1940s dress and a younger Mary wearing it. You looked lovely both then and now. I just adore a good print especially a floral one.I totally agree about prints and denim they look great together and you illustrate that so well in your outfits.

    1. Thanks for your very sweet words Vronni. Of course you are the prints and pattern mixing wizard, you do them with such panache. Denim and a dress I’d perfect for the next couple of months eh.
      Hugs x.

  7. You have so many beautiful printed pieces in your wardrobe! I have a lot of stripes in my wardrobe but like you I do love a good floral dress too! :)

    Thanks so much for joining the #WeekdayWearLinkup!

    Away From The Blue

    1. Well Mica, I love the crispness of stripes but I just don’t find stripies too often. Florals abound so are an easy pick up! Looking forward to seeing more of your stripes!
      Hugs x

  8. Hi Mary!
    Good to see you! I am a print girl too, and lean towards florals and most but stripes, unless they are cut in different directions etc. Love the vibrant looks!
    thanks for linking!
    jess xx

    1. Oh Jess you wear the most beautiful feminine prints and I love them all, you are the Print Queen!
      Hugs x.

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