DID YOU HEAR ABOUT THE GINGHAM?
'lightweight plain-woven cotton cloth, typically checked in white and a bold colour.'
At the time of publishing, the UK is seeing the most glorious summer weather and the current gingham trend is perfect for this. There are several reasons for why we believe everyone should be cracking out the gingham, read on to find out!
Gingham fabrics are traditionally made from cotton fibres and feature a 1 colour woven with white yarns. This combination when woven into a check pattern gives a square pattern with white, coloured and paler squares. This is one of the most recognisable patterns on the market and is massively versatile, resulting in its timeless popularity. The cotton fibres are perfect for summer as they are highly absorbent and draw sweat and moisture away from the skin, they are also breathable helping to keep you cool. The lighter weight of gingham and plain weave makes it an easy fabric to work with, especially for beginners, it pleats, gathers and presses very easily.
It is believed that gingham was developed in the Brittany region of France and featured stripes instead of the check we see today however, as it was imported throughout Europe, it was heavily manufactured in Manchester, England and the check pattern became very popular. Originating with a limited colour range, light blue is the traditional shade for gingham textiles but we can now enjoy a huge array of contemporary colours to suit any use or skin tone.
So what can you do with gingham to hit the current trend?
For the last few years, daring fashionista's have been combining prints to spearhead a pattern clashing trend. Combining different colours or scales of gingham can help you achieve this look without having to push too far! You can treat your different sizes and colours just as you would colour blocking.
Think about the direction of your pattern. Choose patterns that feature bias cut pieces or patterns you could amend to achieve this. This would put your check on an angle, creating a new effect. For example you could make a dress, keep the bodice cut on the straight where you need the fit, and then change the skirt to the bias for a diagonal look, this would also add fullness.
A huge trend at the moment adds emberoidery and details to garments to create a more premium look. You could achieve this by adding decorative stitches, crochet lace trim or machine embroidery. Use decorative stitches to hem your garments or add detail on the cuffs or necklines, lace trim on any edges you would like to draw attention to, perhaps pockets and if you have a machine that doubles up as an embroidery machine, add motifs or surface pattern to your fabric!
Incorporate shirring into your garments to add texture and shape to your silhouette. The cotton nature of gingham creates a lovely body to the fabric once it has been shirred, this could be around the waist, the whole bodice, the hem or even cuffs. This also adds a bit of dynamic to the pattern, almost like how we previously mentioned playing with scale.
If you like the gingham look but don't feel confident with different colours or adding extra detail, that really easy, just keep it simple. Let the gingham fabric do the work for you, simple shapes can still look so elegant!
And my final statement of encouragement... Just because gingham is perfect for summer, doesn't mean it is only good for summer! As the warmer months approach, pair with tights and knitwear to be able to wear your favourite all year around!
If this post has got you geared up for gingham, you can shop our gingham and seersucker range here.
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