The 3 retro prints you need in your wardrobe for s/s 2019

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Harriet Davey
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Polka dot street style

From chic polka dots, to grown-up gingham – these are the prints that’ll take your outfits straight into spring territory.

It’s time to welcome some familiar prints back into your wardrobe this season. We can almost guarantee you’ve worn some of these now retro looks before, but this time you’ll be wearing the modern iterations that are all over the high street and designer sites. 

Chic polka dots, grown-up gingham and chain prints are all big news for s/s 2019. Although you may associate polka dots with your mum’s 1980s outfits, gingham to your old school uniform and chain prints to the Nineties and early Noughties – this time they’re even better. Staple dresses you’ll wear on repeat, must-have midi skirts, and throw-on-anytime blazers will be part of your spring uniform.

We’ve found ways to wear the three perfect prints, along with the best pieces our fashion editors already have in their shopping baskets. Warning: prepare for serious shopping urges, ladies. 

1) Perfect polka dots 

Polka dot street style

It’s time to welcome back polka dots with open arms, once again. Mostly known as a 1980s staple print, they’re about to take over your wardrobe. 

We spotted (literally) them on the catwalks at Max Mara, Dolce and Gabbana and Rejina Pyo – to name a few – and they’re also all over the high street, too. Opt for colourful hues and clash different sized polkas for a premium feel. 

& Other Stories polka dot dress

& other Stories dress

The shirt dress just got a sassy spotty update – we love it. The tie waist is so flattering and the polka dot print and bold green colour ticks off two trends in one. 

£89, & Other Stories 

Mother of Pearl fringed polka-dot satin wide-leg pants

Mother of Pearl polka dot trousers

We told you mixing different sized polkas makes everything look more chic. The slightly larger spot on the belt, mixed with the tassel detail and belted waist creates the perfect pair of trousers for any occasion. 

£396, Mother of Pearl

Ganni polka-dot swimsuit

Ganni swimsuit

We don’t want to panic you, but now is perfect time to snap up the best swimwear. By the time summer hits, all the best ones like this Ganni beauty will be gone – trust us. 

£160, Ganni 

2) Grown-up gingham

Street style gingham

We would usually associate gingham with primary school uniforms or table cloths. However, the suitably stylish pieces that are hitting the high street and designer rails couldn’t be further from the school gates.

Classic, sleek and totally chic. We’re looking to the likes of Balenciaga and Mango to fulfill the gingham gap in our wardrobes this season.  

Balenciaga hourglass gingham wool-blend blazer

Balenciaga blazer

Adding a blazer to most outfits can make it look like you’ve made an effort, without even trying. A double breasted style is so flattering, and the small gingham check in monochrome keeps it smart – perfect for work

£2,110, Balenciaga

Mango gingham check pattern trousers

Gingham Mango trousers

The blue gingham is the one that can look more school girl than strong independent woman. So, opt for trousers with a sleek tie belt instead of the younger tea dress or mini skirt and it’ll stay looking grown-up.

£39.99, Mango

Loeffler Randall Lorna wicker and gingham canvas tote

Loeffler Randall bag

Not sure on the gingham return? Ease yourself in with an accessory. This wicker bag will be dreamy on the beach with a white linen dress and sandals. Ah, summer. 

£255, Loeffler Randall

3) Cool-girl chain print

Chain print street style

Of course it’s Versace, and, of course, we all know their signature chain print. Most of us even remember wearing in the 1980s and 1990s with a bit of a street vibe, and now it’s back in a whole new stylish way. 

It’s all about getting the right print that looks chic rather than cheap. Style up the blue Zara shirt below with wide leg trousers and mules for a winning combination. 

Zara chain print blouse

Zara chain print shirt

It may be slightly on the Hawaiian shirt level with how statement it is, but in a great way. Keep it looking stylish by teaming with tailored pieces. 

£29.99, Zara

Rixo midi skirt with slits

Rixo chain print skirt

We can always rely on Rixo to deliver the good when it comes to exciting prints. Team the slit side midi with a white T-shirt and voilà. 

£215, Rixo 

Monse grosgrain-trimmed printed silk-twill gown

Monse chain dress

£1,779, Monse

Image credits: Getty


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Harriet Davey

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