Fashion 2011: Stripes and nautical prints


2010's infatuation with military fashion was heavily influenced by army and air force styling, meaning naval influenced pieces hardy got a look in. As the military trend winds down for spring 2011, we turn to new influences - but that doesn't mean the nautical shall be overlooked entirely. For those fashionisers who are nautically inclined, Spring 2011 still has something in store. Don't think of it strictly as a nautical military trend, however. Rather, in 2011, it's the classic navy and white colour palette, worn as dominant stripes.
navy stripe clothing
Striped summer dress at Jil Sander SS11

The Style

Note that I didn't say bold stripes, but dominant stripes. While navy and white stripes are a must for the look (though black and white can also work in 2011), the real key to Summer's take on nautical stripes is that they dominate the outfit. While they do so in the below look easily (though the plum Doc Martens still seem somewhat heavy), in other outfits it's about drawing attention to the stripes above all else in the outfit.
navy stripe clothing
Striped summer dress snapped in Sydney by Vanessa Jackman.
As an illustration of the point be sure to look at the inspiration pictures below; while most looks rely on bold stripes, you'll see that the trend is just as effective when the stripes are thin. Hence for Summer 2010 look for dominant stripes, not necessarily bold ones.

The Pieces To Wear in 2011

Don't think of this Summer stripes just as a clothing trend: you can work them into any part of an outfit (just not all at once, please). As you'll see in the inspiration gallery stripes can dominate an outfit in everything from hats to killer mini-dresses.
striped hat
Striped summer hat snapped by Jak and Jil.
2011's return of bell bottoms - a style which originated with the sailor pants of the US navy - also presents the perfect opportunity for creating nautical ensembles. And of course a striped top with flares is a combination that also lends itself to a perfectly 70s inspired look.
stripes with flares
Striped top and flared jeans at 
Fidelity Denim SS11

To Nautical Or Not To Nautical?

While Summer's navy and white striped fashion trend isn't a true take on navy inspired fashion, it's likely to appeal to those who are in to the nautical aesthetic. If that's you and you're after some inspiration look to Anja Rubik's sailor inspiration from the June 2010 issue of Vogue Korea. The shoot utilises the season's stripe trend in the form of a dominant blazer, but takes the nautical motifs to far less subtle proportions.
anja rubik navy

Layering

The natural inclination for layering nautical pieces in an outfit is to do so with complimentary colours (read 'navy and white'). And I can't fault that logic. It's the easy option. But may I offer up one piece of inspiration that differs from the safe? Clashes of stripes with other patterns or prints, for example this shot of Nataliya Piro in Cosmopolitan magazine mixing (admittedly non-dominant) stripes with florals. The stripes don't dominate, but in a crowded room the look certainly will.
stripes with florals
Nautical stripes with floral print.

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