Polka dots spring to life this season
No surprise. Polka dots are popping this spring.
They never go out of favor, but some years they are more popular. This is one of those years.
Polka dots cover lots of styles from cocktail suits to flirty halter dresses to wide-legged pants. Look for dots on scarves, tops and swimwear, even shoes and handbags.
The circles range from big and bold in classic black and white to rainbow brights to more subtle, tiny prints. For those not willing to commit fully to the dot, it’s often mixed with other prints such as florals and stripes. And if polka dots just look too cute, tone down the feel with a structured jacket, tailored pants or a sleek sheath.
Polka dots are upbeat. Sometimes lighthearted. Other times sophisticated.
“It’s a timeless print. It’s feel-good fashion,” said Charlet Sauls, owner of Boutique One in Oklahoma City.
In 1926, Miss America was photographed wearing a polka dot swimsuit. Perhaps that was the spark that ignited America’s love affair with the print. Two years later Disney introduced Minnie Mouse and she has been sporting polka dots ever since.
Memorable moments followed. Marilyn Monroe grabbed attention in a polka dot two-piece swimsuit in 1951. Christian Dior’s polka dot dress was his best-selling New Look piece in 1954. Then there was a song, “Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini.” And let’s not forget Julia Roberts in a polka dot derby dress in the movie “Pretty Woman.”
Even royals have been known to embrace the print. Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton wore a petty polka-dot dress to Wimbledon last summer.
“Other than florals, polka dots are the quintessential spring pattern,” said Cindi Shelby, director of stylists for Worth New York. “They’re always fresh and playful. Women love it because it’s just such a feel-good, happy print. It’s classic and has been on and off the fashion scene since the 1920s.”
So, embrace the dot this season.
“It’s fun femininity at its best,” Shelby said.