Hawaiian shirts had a bit of a moment last summer. They coincided with a summer soundtrack from bands like Best Coast and The Drums with their lashings of musical 60s-Cali-Beach Boys-surfer vibes. Oversized Hawaiian shirts with their billowy armholes for optimum armpit ventilation and easy to throw on nature seemed to perfectly compliment that mini moment. My own shirt which I bought when I was traveling across the states to reinvigorate my traveling wardrobe which was getting both repetitive and a little bit smelly would probably have stayed tucked away this Summer if I hadn't seen Central St Martin's graduate Maarten Van Der Horst's collection and been inspired to wear tropical prints in a slightly different way.
This time sees the tropical prints in a smarter setting. Well cut trousers and matchy-matchy suits reminiscent of the starched pyjama sets 'proper' people (ie, not me) own seem a more mature alternative and the larger botanic prints- Birds of Paradise and large palm leaves pick up where Stella McCartney, Prada and House of Holland left off with their fruity, leafy Spring collections. The collection has that grown up air and comes off as remarkably 'simple' despite the huge prints. And despite the collection being a Winter one, the clothes themselves seem to be adaptable for summer. Associating Hawaiian prints with warm July breezes and the feeling of sunshine on your skin is perfectly justified in my books, and imagining wearing a pair of tropical slacks with leathery sandals and a bikini top on a beach is the epitome is excitement on a february day.