In the last few years, the floral dress has been spotted everywhere. But when an It-piece becomes a modern classic, of course, there is always a danger of snapping up the same print that everyone else has bought for the season ahead.
Luckily, a few brands – both new and established – have sought to master the art of the floral frock, delivering designs that are exciting, unexpected and, crucially, different to everything else out there.
These are the six labels I would recommend getting on your radar if you’re looking for a floral dress to wear to weddings, baby showers, hen dos and beyond…
1. Nobody’s Child
With its totally fresh take on prints for the high street, Nobody’s Child has fast become a new authority on florals. The London-based design team is headed up by ex-River Island and Reiss designer Jody Plows, who wanted to create must-have dresses using exclusively sustainable materials. The prints on top of broderie anglaise lace fabrics feel particularly exciting this season – these are textured, tactile florals and come in shapes beyond the standard midi cut.
Look for bubble hems, drop waists and high necks if you fancy switching things up when it comes to your next wedding guest silhouette.
Another small British label founded in 2020, Omnes offers an array of floral prints. From graphic daisies and blown-up botanicals, to more painterly, ‘80s patterns, there’s something for everyone here with flowery prints on offer all year round rather than just for the spring season.
Again the mission at the brand is to make eco-friendly floral dresses affordable for all, you can fall in love with every print you see safe in the knowledge that it comes on a recycled or organic fabric. The splashy, abstract Millicent tea dress is sure to be one of this year’s bestsellers.
What I like about Albaray is the spectrum of different flowers they incorporate into each collection. The label was launched in 2021 by three former Warehouse designers – Paula Stewart, Karen Peacock and Kirstie Di Stazio – seeking to bring more sustainable fabrics to the great British high street. A year in, and their signature designs now span block-print botanicals, patchworked ditsy florals and delicate hand-illustrated florals.
A lot of considered details are also injected into every frock – the hot pink ribbon trim on this floral cami dress is gorgeous, and makes it well worth taking on holiday.
Good old Ghost has undergone an overhaul in the last five years, reemerging as a jewel in the crown of the British high street and a specialist in flower power frocks. Its huge range of seasonal prints is virtually unbeatable, with swirling vines, classic roses and more tropical graphic flowers applied to shirt dresses, tea dresses and minis alike. If you don’t want to wear full florals, it’s worth noting that most prints also come in a blouse edition. My top tip? Don’t forget to check out the label’s frequent exclusive collaborations with M&S for versions of their bestsellers at a lower price.
5. Finery London
Finery relaunched in 2021 and is now a sister label to Ghost. As such, it offers heaps of floral print dresses at lower prices – typically between £40 and £70 for a frock that could be styled as easily with trainers on the school run as it could with heels for a party. Almost every dress in the summer 2022 collection comes in multiple colour combinations and different cuts, meaning that you can almost certainly find the exact configuration to suit you best. I’d wear the Marta shirt dress with espadrilles to a pub garden.
6. Ro & Zo
Another fantastic small and sustainable British brand to have on your radar is Ro & Zo. Best friends Rosie and Zoe founded the label during the pandemic and have since grown their business to be stocked at John Lewis & Partners, as well as on their own website. Their USP when it comes to floral dresses has to be their graphic and abstract bloom designs, typically spliced with additional prints such as polka dots for a contrasting clash. Got a summer wedding in the diary? You’ll feel pretty good when you tell others your dress is from this under-the-radar label rather than a typical high street stalwart.