Skip to main content

The Globe and Mail

Runway/Real way: How to wear soft, watercolour-like brush-stroke prints

The artsy vibe of the spring/summer collections was expressed most beautifully at the Vera Wang show, which included ethereal dresses in brush-stroke motifs. A change in direction from the graphic patterns that have been popular for several seasons, these watercolour-like prints have a soft, contemporary feeling and are universally flattering thanks to their lack of hard lines.

1. The oversized scale of the brush stroke element in the Vera Wang look at far left is fashion-forward and a little tricky to wear. Look for a smaller version of a similar print on a muted pastel background.

2. Printed separates such as a statement skirt are more office-appropriate than a fully patterned dress, especially a piece that incorporates layers of sheer fabric.

3. Matching prints with prints requires a keen eye for styling. An easier approach is to pair a brush-stroke piece with pumps and a bag in a solid colour.

The details

Cardigan, $49.50 at Loft ( Pink Tartan top, $125 through Skirt, $199 at Tiger of Sweden ( Hue tights, $16 at department stores and boutiques across Canada (visit for retailers). Expression shoes, $59 at Hudson’s Bay ( Soixante Neuf necklace, $210, Liz Palacios earrings, $29.99 at Elle Hardware ( Clutch, $185 at Banana Republic (

Styling by Odessa Paloma Parker. Hair and makeup by Cody Alain for TRESemmé Hair Care/M.A.C Cosmetics/ Photographed on location at Bensimon Byrne (

Report an error Licensing Options

The Globe invites you to share your views. Please stay on topic and be respectful to everyone. For more information on our commenting policies and how our community-based moderation works, please read our Community Guidelines and our Terms and Conditions.

We’ve made some technical updates to our commenting software. If you are experiencing any issues posting comments, simply log out and log back in.

Discussion loading… ✨

Combined Shape Created with Sketch.

Combined Shape Created with Sketch.

Thank you!

You are now subscribed to the newsletter at

You can unsubscribe from this newsletter or Globe promotions at any time by clicking the link at the bottom of the newsletter, or by emailing us at