Big Florals

Talking about floral-print trends for spring and summer may seem a bit obvious--they always turn up at this time of year--but this season there's a new botanical look that's flourishing in the high-fashion world, and it's bigger and bolder than ever! Right now it's all about beautiful garden scenes coming to life, as large and literal depictions of roses, hibiscus, and lilies are turning on everything from dresses to swimwear. Stylish femmes like Eva Mendes and Ashlee Simpson are already embracing this vibrantly-hued, blooming look, and with so many exciting floral-emblazoned pieces on the market, we think you'll fall in love too!

Now, before we dive into the details of today's featured floral items, we'd like to start by referencing how the runways and a few well-dressed celebrities approached these bold patterns. At the D&G S/S 11 show, designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana turned out a fantastic display of whimsical garden-party ensembles, which included blossom-strewn tops, skirts, and flowy dresses expertly mixed and matched for a youthful take on the trend.

While a mash-up of botanical prints is bound to garner plenty of attention, it's certainly not the only way to incorporate this au courant range of floras into your daily mix! For a more wearable, everyday approach, you can always try just one standout piece and balance it with a few neutral accents, as demonstrated by Eva Mendes. We came across a photo of the actress shopping in Los Angeles recently, and couldn't help but admire the way she kept the simple-yet-bold rose print of her Daughters of the Revolution Revolution Floral Short Sleeve Dress ($268) the focal point of her daytime ensemble by pairing it with gray Christian Louboutin wedges (from a past season) and a caramel bag. It's also worth noting that this styling trick comes in handy for busier floral prints as well, as Ashlee Simpson showed us last month. The singer was spotted in New York recently wearing Topshop's vibrant Jade Floral Print Dungarees ($100, 212.966.9555) with tan heels and a gray fedora. Of course, if you're feeling a bit more daring, you can always take a page from Tali Lennox's stylebook! We totally love the way the model teamed her hibiscus-print dress with wonderfully bright accessories, including cobalt blue heels and a lime green hat, for the Royal Academy of Arts Sumer Exhibition preview party in London last month.

Ready to introduce some big florals into your summer wardrobe? Well you've come to the right place, dear readers, because we've found some pretty fantastic items that will help you create this fresh look at home! Seeing as we pretty much own every Equipment blouse ever made, it should come as no surprise that we're currently obsessing over their latest floral button-down: The Daddy Tie Front Blouse ($268) in Berry. It's simply irresistible, thanks to its bright fuchsia rose print and adorable tie-front detail, and would look lovely worn with a midi skirt or denim cutoffs. We're also quite fond of Rebecca Taylor's Poppy Sequin Cami ($275); we think the multiple colors and subtle sparkle would really pop against a pair of white flare jeans. If you found yourself falling for Simpson's adorable one-piece, you definitely don't want to miss Zimmermann's Posy Floral-Print Cotton-Voile Playsuit ($340)! The vibrant floral print is perfect for numerous summer occasions and would look smart worn over a bathing suit and with a pair of chic sandals for your next pool party. Also topping our list are Charlotte Ronson's Floral Pleated Shorts ($195)--the precious floral motif and silky material make for a seriously chic pair of summer shorts!

If you were hoping to snag a few non-clothing floral items, you're in luck because we've also gathered an amazing pair of shoes and a fabulous suit too! When it comes to floral footwear, Girl by Band of Outsiders' Geisha Floral Wedges ($380) are an office favorite. We adore the printed silk ribbons--which look darling when wrapped around your ankles--plus the comfortable wooden flatform is a spot-on choice for summer. And last, but certainly not least, you must check out Nanette Lepore's Provence Rose Heartbreaker Swim Top ($79) in Lavender and Bottoms ($69) in Lavender. With a bright color scheme, cool graphic-rose print, and subtle mesh detailing, this bikini is sure to make a splash this season!--Jessica Baker