Chic Crochet

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OSCAR DE LA RENTA PRINTED RAFFIA STRAPLESS DRESS, $5,490 (oscardelarenta.com)

This woven detail is being sewn into various lightweight looks this spring and summer.

By Ashley Besing

This season, crochet isn’t simply your grandma’s favorite hobby: This intricate design is weaving its way into becoming one of the most popular fashion finds. From subtle detailing on a jacket to a dress completely interlaced with texture, these modern yet slightly nostalgic pieces can be found in closets throughout the South as the weather gets warmer and calls for the casual yet elegant woven trend.

A personal stylist with more than 17 years of experience with high-end brands—not to mention three degrees in fashion apparel studies and fashion merchandising—Michelle Price is no stranger to the popularity of crochet. Price, who splits her time between Atlanta and southern Florida, has turned to this chic style numerous times through her wardrobe styling company, Ladyfied.

She has recognized a sudden resurgence of interest in this age-old trend—but, now, with new twists. “Although crochet can be traced back to the early 1700s with a revival in the 1960s and 1970s, many designers incorporated this vintage look into their 2020 collections in fresh new ways,” Price says.

ROBERTO CAVALLI HENNA TATTOO CROCHET DRESS, $2,070 (robertocavalli.com)

As local temperatures rise, the various patterns in these knit looks make them the perfectly breezy solution for the warmer seasons. The breathable fabrics, paired with vibrant colors, are reminiscent of only the best beach vibes: relaxing near the coast, sunshine all around, as the waves roll in and out. “Crochet[ed] fabric is very light and airy—making it ideal for the warmer temperatures in the spring and summer,” Price notes. “With the heat and humidity here in the South, clothing that is lightweight … is essential.”

Some of the best ways to wear this trend include dresses, skirts and intricate tops. The frilly design can even make a statement by the water, whether as a bathing suit design or in between swim sessions in the form of a flirty cover-up. “Pairing a crochet dress or skirt with your bikini or one-piece swimsuit creates a very feminine and fashionable poolside look,” she explains.

Whether it’s a crocheted dress paired with a swimsuit, a detailed jacket slipped over a blouse or a unique pair of pants in an interesting color scheme, there is no doubt that the complicated pattern draws a lot of attention. As such, Price says it’s important to make sure that the look isn’t too overpowering. “Crochet makes a strong statement on its own. Balance outfits that feature crochet with more subtle accessories,” she suggests. Price also recommends avoiding stacked or layered crochet; instead, opt to pair crocheted looks with a piece that’s more subdued.

Sometimes the crocheted design itself is the perfect accessory to complete an outfit. Stocking up on crocheted statement pieces is a fun, easy and fashionable way to incorporate the trend in your wardrobe, Price says. From classic headbands, hats and scarves to belts, shoes and even jewelry, these stitched additions can liven up an otherwise dull outfit and draw attention to a desired area on your frame with the help of a little added texture.

In fact, one of Price’s favorite accessories is a crocheted handbag, which can create a chic, casual aesthetic when paired with a flowy dress. “[These accessories] can add unique charm and character to many understated outfits,” she explains.

Whether it’s an accessory or an entire jumpsuit, the crochet look is quickly finding its way from the runway to the pool this season. And with the growing interest and popularity, there are plenty of crocheted items readily available—without having to pick up a crochet hook and some colorful yarn.

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