Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking

Lindsey Lanquist
Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
31 Start slideshow
Photo: Allison Kahler.

In one particularly iconic The Devil Wears Prada scene, Meryl Streep—as renowned (and fictional) editor-in-chief Miranda Priestly—berates a staff member for suggesting a fashion story about spring florals. “Florals? For spring?” Priestly asks with incredulity, before delivering her sarcastic kicker: “Groundbreaking.”

Spring, with all its April showers and May flowers, is (of course) an inherently floral season. It’s pervaded by vibrant pastels, fresh energy and literal plant blooms. Naturally, the fashion set has drawn inspiration from the season time and time again, leaving the rest of us with a diverse array of floral dresses we shelve until spring makes its annual appearance.

But this season, our favorite designers have branched into legitimately groundbreaking territory: They’ve tried to make fall florals happen.

MORE: Cutting-Edge Ways to Style a Muted Autumn Wardrobe

Just as the phrase “spring florals” sounds like a given, “fall florals” sounds like an oxymoron. Fall is about muted colors, chunky knits and clunky footwear. And we’ve long accepted that dainty, colorful florals belong nowhere in that sartorial scene.

But this year, they do. MSGM, Valentino, Zimmermann and a handful of others have redefined the floral print—rendering it in a darker, more haunted autumnal palette that would take any peasant dress from “dreamy afternoon at the park” to “blustery morning in New York City.” The floral pieces they’ve created feel distinctly cold-weather appropriate—worthy of pairing with heavy layers, heavier outerwear and even heavier shoes.

It’s like floral prints have been given new life—or more grounded, perhaps. They feel edgy, sophisticated and surprisingly cozy all at once.

MORE: 17 Faux Fur Jackets That Aren’t Too Over the Top to Wear Daily

It’s possible this sounds crazy to you—more like a nightmare than a dream. But as someone who resents the practice of seasonally retiring clothing, I’m very on board with this sudden shift. And I’d wager you will be, too—once you actually see the fall florals I’m talking about.

Ahead, 31 ways to shop (or at the very least, browse) fall’s most surprising trend. Dive in—groundbreaking fashion awaits.

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STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Borgo de Nor Jasmine Crepe Maxi

Black floral gowns are officially on the menu.

Borgo de Nor Jasmine crepe maxi, $1,000 at Matches Fashion

Photo: Matches Fashion.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Erdem Anisha Floral Jacquard Jacket

Your go-to power suit wants in on the fall floral trend, too.

Erdem Anisha floral jacquard jacket, $858 at Matches Fashion

Photo: Matches Fashion.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
MSGM Contrast Panel Cotton Dress

A patchwork cotton dress rendered as autumnally as possible.

MSGM contrast panel cotton dress, $840 at Matches Fashion

Photo: Matches Fashion.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Mother of Pearl Ivy Mules

In case you prefer a pop of floral to a full-on printed ensemble.

Mother of Pearl Ivy mules, $595 at Shopbop

Photo: Shopbop.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
RedValentino Chiffon Maxi Dress

RedValentino calls this a maxi dress. I don't think I'd go that far, but I'd definitely call it statement-making magic.

RedValentino chiffon maxi dress, $979 at Matches Fashion

Photo: Matches Fashion.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
House of Hackney Blazer

The trend has trickled into fast-fashion retailers, too.

House of Hackney blazer, $102 at & Other Stories

Photo: & Other Stories.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Zimmermann Unbridled Tempest Dress

The ultimate peasant dress for fall. (Leave it to Zimmermann.)

Zimmermann Unbridled Tempest dress, $2,350 at Net-a-Porter

Photo: Net-a-Porter.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Blue Peplum Camisole

Because floral matching sets shouldn't be spring- and summer-exclusive.

Blue peplum camisole, $28 at Topshop

Photo: Topshop.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Rixo London Katie Midi Dress

Saturated spring colors get a seriously autumn spin.

Rixo London Katie midi dress, $400 at Net-a-Porter

Photo: Net-a-Porter.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Laurence Dacade Embroidered Ankle Boots

The perfect accessory for your favorite black-on-black look.

Laurence Dacade embroidered ankle boots, $348 at Farfetch

Photo: Farfetch.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
CO Tiered Midi Dress

Layer this midi dress over a turtleneck for optimal fall floral vibes.

CO tiered midi dress, $1,095 at Net-a-Porter

Photo: Net-a-Porter.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Borgo de Nor Serena Midi Dress

Equal parts cozy and cute.

Borgo de Nor Serena midi dress, $900 at Net-a-Porter

Photo: Net-a-Porter.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Vetements Floral Glove-Sleeve Dress

Your go-to party dress comes complete with gloves now.

Vetements floral glove-sleeve dress, $1,035 at Matches Fashion

Photo: Matches Fashion.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
CO Silk-Chiffon Maxi Dress

A straight-up autumn dream.

CO silk-chiffon maxi dress, $1,495 at Net-a-Porter

Photo: Net-a-Porter.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Kenzo Floral Faux Fur Coat

Yup, even faux fur coats are floral now.

Kenzo floral faux fur coat, $830 at Bergdorf Goodman

Photo: Bergdorf Goodman.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Ulla Johnson Josie Smocked Dress

A puffy sleeve peasant dress in a strictly autumn palette? We're in love.

Ulla Johnson Josie smocked dress, $575 at Net-a-Porter

Photo: Net-a-Porter.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Needle & Thread Winter Forest Chiffon Gown

Pile on the ruffles—extra fabric means extra warmth.

Needle & Thread Winter Forest chiffon gown, $535 at Net-a-Porter

Photo: Net-a-Porter.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Floral Jacquard Jacket

In case you thought pink and fall were mutually exclusive.

Floral jacquard jacket, $125 at Topshop

Photo: Topshop.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Gastro Court Shoes

A subtle way to show your support for the fall floral movement.

Gastro Court shoes, $80 at Topshop

Photo: Topshop.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
PushButton Printed Dress

I thought velvet floral dresses were a fashion myth—yet here we are.

PushButton printed dress, $595 at Shopbop

Photo: Shopbop.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Dolce & Gabbana Floral Print Dress

The print keeps it springy, and the black keeps it autumnal. (I.e., you've just met the perfect floral dress to wear year round.)

Dolce & Gabbana floral print dress, $2,795 at Net-a-Porter

Photo: Net-a-Porter.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Mes Demoiselles Charles Velvet Jacket

Because floral jackets are definitely more fun than regular jackets.

Mes Demoiselles Charles velvet jacket, $365 at Shopbop

Photo: Shopbop.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Ganni Rometty Smock Dress

A black long-sleeve smock dress. Name a better season for this piece than fall.

Ganni Rometty smock dress, $280 at Net-a-Porter

Photo: Net-a-Porter.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Beatrice Strappy Maxi Dress

Perfect for fall days that skew particularly sunny.

Beatrice strappy maxi dress, $250 at Free People

Photo: Free People.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Veronica Beard Marion Mini Dress

Mini dresses can be totally fall-worthy, too.

Veronica Beard Marion mini dress, $495 at Net-a-Porter

Photo: Net-a-Porter.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Floral Jacquard Blazer

Because floral jacquard looks (and feels) best when it's cold out.

Floral jacquard blazer, $100 at Zara

Photo: Zara.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Paul & Joe Chiffon Midi Dress

Long sleeves. High neck. Can't lose.

Paul & Joe chiffon midi dress, $840 at Net-a-Porter

Photo: Net-a-Porter.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Etro Floral Jacquard Kimono Coat

This floral coat is here to keep you looking great and feeling cozy.

Etro floral jacquard kimono coat, $1,732 at Neiman Marcus

Photo: Neiman Marcus.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
See by Chloe Hannah Saddle Bag

A little floral accent (or two) never hurt anybody.

See by Chloe Hannah saddle bag, $460 at Shopbop

Photo: Shopbop.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
BCBGMAXAZRIA Velvet Wrap Dress

And we thought floral velvet dresses were rare. Floral velvet wrap maxi dresses? We can hardly handle something so magnificent.

BCBG MAXAZRIA velvet wrap dress, $338 at Revolve

Photo: Revolve.
STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
Saloni Lea Jacquard Maxi Dress

A floral print rendered entirely in black (plus a little embroidery to seal the deal).

Saloni Lea jacquard maxi dress, $950 at Net-a-Porter

Photo: Net-a-Porter.

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  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
  • STYLECASTER | Florals for Fall? Actually Groundbreaking
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