How to wear the prairie trend

13th Jun 19 | Beauty

Fashionistas are loving the prim and proper look for summer, says Katie Wright.

Erdem Catwalk – London Fashion Week September 2018

They say that for every fashion trend that goes mainstream, the opposite look is adopted by tastemakers, and that seems to be true in the case of the prairie dress.

High-necked, long sleeved and with a hem that always falls at least below the knee (if not to the ankle), the Victoriana inspired frock has been gaining popularity with a certain kind of cool-girl, while other parts of the fashion world continue to obsess over clingy, skimpy, neon-hued designs.

On the SS19 catwalks, Erdem presented the most breathtaking example of a prairie dress with this magnificent aqua-blue gown, and Alexander McQueen showed full-skirted, puff-sleeved dresses too.

Models on the catwalk during the Erdem London Fashion Week September 2018 show at The National Portrait Gallery in London.
Erdem SS19 (Isabel Infantes/PA)

Over in American, Batsheva has become the prairie lover’s go-to, with celebrity fans of the premium dress brand including singer Florence Welch and up-and-coming actor Beanie Feldstein.

Now the trend has trickled down to the high street, making it easy to get the look at cheaper price points.

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Florence Welch twirling for me yesterday 💙

A post shared by Batsheva (@batshevadress) on

Of course, a dress is the key piece, and if you’re going to do prairie properly it has to be midi or maxi length, in a chintzy print and with long sleeves.

But as we head into summer, you might not want to be so covered up.

The good news is there are lots of very pretty frocks and blouses with Bardot necklines and puffy sleeves that are ideal for hot weather and holidays.

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Love my @batshevadress dress 💕💕✨

A post shared by dollywells (@dollywells) on

Colour wise, keep it soft and subdued with creams, pinks and pale yellow hues, whether it’s floral prints or broderie anglaise fabrics.

Same goes for accessories. A pair of western ankle boots and a saddle bag are the perfect addition to a prairie ensemble, or espadrille sandals for high summer.

Here are our favourite prairie pieces on the high street…

Wallis Cream Paisley Maxi Shirt Dress; Stone Beaded Heeled Sandal
(Wallis/PA)

Wallis Cream Paisley Maxi Shirt Dress, currently reduced to £40 from £65; Stone Beaded Heeled Sandal, £45

Monsoon Francisca Broderie Cotton Maxi Dress, Rue Raffia Leaf Shopper Bag
(Monsoon/PA)

Monsoon Francisca Broderie Cotton Maxi Dress, £140; Rue Raffia Leaf Shopper Bag, £45

Dorothy Perkins Ivory Broderie Top, White Ivory Broderie Skirt
(Dorothy Perkins/PA)

Dorothy Perkins Ivory Broderie Top, currently reduced to £17 from £24; White Ivory Broderie Skirt; reduced to £15 from £26

Elvi Mia Printed Smock Dress
(Elvi/PA)

Elvi Mia Printed Smock Dress, £75

Bonprix Folklore Dress
(Bonprix/PA)

Bonprix Folklore Dress, £49.99

Lipsy Boho Paisley Cami Maxi Dress
(Lipsy/PA)

Lipsy Boho Paisley Cami Maxi Dress, £60, Next

Miss Selfridge Burgundy Dobby Fringe Bardot Dress
(Miss Selfridge/PA)

Miss Selfridge Burgundy Dobby Fringe Bardot Dress, £32

New Look Yellow Linen-Look Lace Up Milkmaid Top
(New Look/PA)

New Look Yellow Linen-Look Lace Up Milkmaid Top, currently reduced to £7 from £19.99

George at Asda Snakeskin Print Textured Western Boots
(George at Asda/PA)

George at Asda Snakeskin Print Textured Western Boots, £25

Marks and Spencer Collection Suede Western Ankle Boots
(Marks and Spencer/PA)

Marks and Spencer Collection Suede Western Ankle Boots, £49.50

Simply Be Studded Saddle Bag
(Simply Be/PA)

Simply Be Studded Saddle Bag, currently reduced to £21.25 from £25

Accessorize Yvonne Belt Bag
(Accessorize/PA)

Accessorize Yvonne Belt Bag, £20

© Press Association 2019

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