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April 22, 2015

Floral, Gingham, & Stripes: Spring Elegance for Your After 5 Style

Dressing for a night out, especially as the days get longer so it can be light out when we start our evening’s activities, doesn’t need to be all about black outfits. In fact, mixing prints with solids and wearing them in flattering silhouettes can create a dramatic statement that is perfectly suitable and oh-so-feminine. Whether you choose a soft floral, graphic gingham, or sophisticated stripes, they bring a level of elegance that is just as slimming as any monochrome outfit – and they reflect the sunnier tone of the season. Once you’ve read up on the patterns that we love this season, in Clothes & Conversation , check out our top picks for after 5 below.
And let us know what you think in the comments. Visit us tomorrow (Thursday) for our casual picks in some amazing prints. Whatever the occasion, we’ve got you covered.
http://www.zappos.com/trina-turk-renita-dress-multi
http://www.zappos.com/trina-turk-renita-dress-multi
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Trina Turk - Renita Dress
Renita Dress
Trina Turk
Sold by: Zappos

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This Trina Turk packs a lot of great style – for an equally great price - in to a dress that is appropriate for a shower, cocktail party, or non-black tie wedding. So, that’s pretty functional. The black ground pops the digital floral print and makes it easy to pair with your favorite sexy black heels. The straps of the dress get thinner in the back (click through the ‘shop it’ button to see how pretty it’s finished off) yet remain bra-friendly, with an interesting u-neckline that can be worn with a necklace or without. Trina Turk’s contemporary style and modern fit (0-14) pairs with this dress's fit-and-flare shape to flatter almost every figure. And it's even fully lined, another detail representing how well-made it is.
http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/eliza-j-print-chiffon-maxi-dress/3459854 Eliza J - Print Chiffon Maxi Dress
Eliza J - Print Chiffon Maxi Dress
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Eliza J - Print Chiffon Maxi Dress
Print Chiffon Maxi Dress
Eliza J
Sold by: Nordstrom

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For a more formal affair in spring and summer, we love the use of pattern – this beautiful floral is soft and feminine, and you just can’t beat the value of an Eliza J dress. The armholes are bra-friendly and the neckline hits at a wonderfully slimming spot, showing off your collarbone while not dipping too low. It comes with a gunmetal slim belt that provides the perfect amount of shape. The dress is completely pleated, and with the lining and true-to-size modern fit, the pleats lay smoothly even on more well-endowed women creating smooth lines that are very slimming. And if you’re petite, your tailor can still shorten it. One of our favorite things about this dress – and clearly there are many – is that the floral print uses black, white and grey making it easy to pair strappy sandals in black, silver, or pewter/gunmetal. Remember ladies, your shoes don’t need to exactly match your belt. They should just coordinate. A graphic grey Lucite cuff bracelet is a stylish contrast to the soft dress and will complete the look. This same silhouette is also made in a fresh blue and white combination that is just as striking, especially for a beach town wedding.
http://www.anthropologie.com/anthro/product/clothes-dresses/4130348691175.jsp#/ Maeve - Tea Garden Sheath
Maeve - Tea Garden Sheath
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Maeve - Tea Garden Sheath
Tea Garden Sheath
Maeve
Sold by: Anthropologie

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If you are heading to a celebratory brunch, shower, evening cocktails or dinner, this floral sheath from Anthropologie is the perfect thing. It is a great fit, especially if you have a little bit of curve. The floral print gets more dense by the waist, creating that tapering illusion we love. In the picture, you can see the modern fitting style is slightly cut in at the shoulder, which is one of our favorite design tricks to elongate the arm and give definition to the shoulder, while still being bra-friendly – even with the cutout detail in the back. Not many dresses have so many details while still keeping you covered up. The side pockets are the perfect finishing touch. If you have more of a boyish figure, Plenty’s version is for you. Both can be paired with nude or metallic sandals or pumps, but you can also have a bit of fun by picking a pop color from the florals in the pattern.
http://www.shopbop.com/all-tied-dress-flynn-skye/vp/v=1/1511598882.htm Flynn Skye - All Tied Up Dress
Flynn Skye - All Tied Up Dress
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Flynn Skye - All Tied Up Dress
All Tied Up Dress
Flynn Skye
Sold by: Shopbop

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Flynn Skye’s contemporary fitting dress had us ooh’ing and ahh’ing. The beachy vibe of the muted red/cream floral and polka dot print is offset by a silhouette that is easy yet sophisticated – perfect for a night out, though it also works in a more creative work environment, with its boat neck and knee length styling. The fabric is light and fluid, with an elastic waist and side patch pockets that don’t add any bulk. They actually help offset your hips by providing a little extra movement. The shoulder ties are a ladylike touch that is still bra-friendly. We like adding a belt over the elastic waist (though it’s not necessary) for a polished finish with coordinating heeled sandals.
http://www.shopbop.com/printed-ruched-dress-pam-gela/vp/v=1/1577264555.htm Pam & Gela - Printed Ruched Dress
Pam & Gela - Printed Ruched Dress
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Pam & Gela - Printed Ruched Dress
Printed Ruched Dress
Pam & Gela
Sold by: Shopbop

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A body conscious dress can be intimidating, but put your fears aside with this one from Pam & Gela – the original founders of Juicy Couture. Remember those velour sweatsuits? These ladies know casually comfortable luxury, and apply that knowledge to their new line. The watercolor bird print combines with ruching and pleating in all the right places on this contemporary fitting stretchy jersey dress. The best part – and what provides the smooth finish that hides our little lumps and bumps – is that it is double layered. It makes a huge difference and shows the quality of this easy dress. Pair it with simple black sandals for a relaxing spring or summer evening. You’ll feel great in it.
http://www.michaelstars.com/kimono-7921F0115 Michael Stars - Kimono
Michael Stars - Kimono
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Michael Stars - Kimono
Kimono
Michael Stars
Sold by: Michael Stars

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On a warm summer evening, there is nothing chicer than throwing on a billowy kimono style top over a simple tank or tee and your favorite jeans or white trousers. Whether you are going to a backyard party or a casual dinner, it’s effortless and pulled together looking at the same time. And this season, it plays up the ever-popular ‘70’s trend seamlessly. Michael Stars’ version comes in the floral/tribal print combination that we’re showing and a sheer floral version, too. Both are One Size fits most, and most will truly love it. You really can’t go wrong with the fit, whether you are tall or petite.
http://www.shopbop.com/lenny-open-front-cardigan-apres/vp/v=1/1596814727.htm Apres Ramy Brook - Lenny Open Front Cardigan
Apres Ramy Brook - Lenny Open Front Cardigan
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Apres Ramy Brook - Lenny Open Front Cardigan
Lenny Open Front Cardigan
Apres Ramy Brook
Sold by: Shopbop

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Another cardigan replacement for a spring or summer evening, this chic white cardigan provides pattern in its graphic burnout design within the airy material. The picture shows our favorite way to wear it – with the ends looped up around your neck to create the perfect drape that also conceals and lumps when you add a slim tank or tee beneath it. (It is all one piece, so it’s easy to wrap around your neck.) When you click through the ‘shop it’ button, you can see it can be worn in other ways, but this is the best unless you’re very tall. You’ll add this simple piece over any color top & pants to instantly update your look and give you a little coverage once the sun goes down.
http://www.dvf.com/dvf-davi-chiffon-blouse/S221401A15.html Diane von Furstenberg - Davi Chiffon Blouse
Diane von Furstenberg - Davi Chiffon Blouse
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Diane von Furstenberg - Davi Chiffon Blouse
Davi Chiffon Blouse
Diane von Furstenberg
Sold by: Diane von Furstenberg

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Diane von Furstenberg prints are always amazing, just getting better with age, and this garden version is no exception. The silhouette is effortless and stylish, with an easy fit that is beautiful with slim trousers or jeans for a casual night out (or even shorts, as shown). While it is made of luxurious and lightweight chiffon, DVF lets no detail go unnoticed, so it is line through the bodice – no need to worry about a cami. The bold yellow is perfect for spring and summer, though it also comes in gorgeous pink and graphic black/white through the ‘shop it’ button. This is such an easy style and looks great in a print, so DVF also did it in a bold green, with black/white gingham accents. And, of course, this floral print looks just as beautiful in an iconic wrap dress.
http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/kate-spade-new-york-larisa-pointy-toe-pump-women/4053719 Kate Spade - Larisa Pointy Toe Pump
Kate Spade - Larisa Pointy Toe Pump
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Kate Spade - Larisa Pointy Toe Pump
Larisa Pointy Toe Pump
Kate Spade
Sold by: Nordstrom

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A new accessory is always a great way to update some of your wardrobe staples. Kate Spade’s abstract stripe is printed on to a textured leather in the perfect color combination – vibrant blue, black, and creamy white – that ensures these pumps can be worn with any of your closet favorites like your favorite pair of jeans (rolled up boyfriends, skinnies, and flared styles in all washes look great), a black blazer, or a white dress. They will also update any work look, giving your favorite black suit or sheath dress instant warm weather style.
 

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