How I Came To Love The Polka Dot Trend for Spring 2023

What do you think about polka dots? My initial reaction has always been, “Oh no, I hate them!” They can look juvenile, clown-like, cartoonish (Mini Mouse wears them) and reminiscent of decades from the past (the 80s) that you just may not have loved. Well this season I went from a polka-dot trend despiser to a fan! When polka dots are done right (like Saint Laurent on the runway) they can be elegant, classic, spirit-lifting and/or retro…in a good way!

The Polka Dot Trend for Spring 2023

Spring and summer have always been the seasons to bring out the polka dot prints. They work in warm weather seasons because they are crisp and playful, especially when the dots or the background color is white. Polka-dots coordinate well with your white pants and sneakers, right? OK, so that may be a reason I did not like them. I don’t like little preppy summer prints. They are kind of like gingham checks, another pattern I avoid at all costs.

polka dots for spring 2023 rtunway fountainiof30
Dots as shown at Saint Laurent, Burberry, Proenza Schouler spring 2023



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Best Ways To Wear Polka Dots for Spring 2023

But this season I (ahem) spotted some really chic polka-dot print fashion on the runways for Spring 2023. In fact, one of my top 9 trends for spring 2023 was “Dots Done Right”. They worked because of the fabrics, the drape and the way they were styled. So I took my cues from the spring 2023 runways and put together some of the best ways to wear dot prints, especially for women over 50.ganni polka dot blouse and black pants

The Black and White Polka Dot Blouse

The Saint Laurent blouse and pants ensemble really made me swoon. It looked so cool and it make me rethink my feelings about polka dots. So the simplest way to emulate the look is with a black and white polka dot blouse, (and yes I recommend wearing dark sunglasses too). Practically speaking, you aren’t going to find matching dot print pants, so a pair of flowy wide leg black pants, or even a pair in a bright color (think red, Kelly green or Barbiecore pink) will give you the cool YSL look. The polka-dot wrap blouse pictured above with black pants is from Ganni, now on sale for $88.12.

sanctuary polka dot ruffle blouse fountainof30

I adore this ruffle blouse from Sanctuary for $89. And I also found many more blouses for you to shop at all price points below. H&M has one for only $24.99!

mixed polka dot print pant and shirt fountainof30

Mixing Polka Dot Prints

Both Burberry and Proenza Schouler (as shown in the runway photo) mixed their polka dot prints and the results are surprisingly very sophisticated. Notice how Burberry used tone on tone dot prints and mixed up colors using blues and greys in the same size polka dots. But I really like how all-out Proenza Schouler went with mixing up super large polka dots with medium and small irregular polka dots. You can try your own mix of separates to get the look. Or an easier way is to find a piece that is color-blocked and the mixing is already done for you. Try these bold print pants from Christopher John Rogers now on clearance for $512.50 or this long button front shirt from Samsøe at Nordstrom for $230. Shop more mixed polka-dot prints here.

3 dowdy polka dot print dresses no no no fountanof30

The Polka-Dot Dress

Beware of certain polka dot dresses, and there are many of them out there! Perhaps this is the reason many of us do not usually favor the print. This is my personal preference, but I think you need to avoid the ruffled, puff-sleeved, dowdy, vintage 1920s to 1940s style midi-dresses in polka-dot prints. There are some fresh options for you instead!

best polka dot dresses for women over 50 fountainof30

Go for a silhouette that is sleeker or more modern. When it comes to polka-dot dresses, look for unusual draping, clean and simple looks or asymmetrical hems. Here are more examples.

polka dot accessories headband flat shoe scarf fountainof30

Polka Dot Accessories for Spring 2023

It may seem like an bit of a cop-out to “go with an accessory” when it comes to trying out a trend. However, when it comes to a dominant print like polka dots, it is actually a great solution. You can wear just about anything from all black to a floral print dress or a simple t-shirt and denim jeans. Then when you add a polka-dot bag, shoes, scarf or headband it will really stand out and make a statement. Shop for polka-dot accessories here.

Have I changed your mind about polka dots, or have you always loved them? How do you like to wear polka dots?

Carol Calacci

You may also like to read The Best Spring Fashion Trends of 2023 to Buy Now and Wear Now and The New Spring Green Fashion Color Trend for 2023 is Kellycore.

Runway Photos:

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spring 2023 fashion trends polka dots fountainof30 how to wear polka dots fountainof30




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