The designers have thrown down the (gingham) gauntlet: checks are no longer just for kids, picnic blankets and Judy Garland. They're for grown ups. But does it really work off the catwalk? "Believe it or not, clothing that is completely patterned is actually slimming," celebrity stylist Ali Levine declares, "because the clothing is busy with pattern, but there is no single focal point to draw your eye to." The denser the pattern, the greater the minimising effect. So opt for a small, neat check to slim trouble areas, and bigger, bolder prints to enhance your best bits. We round up the most flattering gingham pieces around...
Gingham peplum blouse, £14, George
This is the perfect gingham shirt for the tummy conscious, as its floaty style and peplum hem will skim over any lumps and bumps. Team with a pair of slim-fitting black or white jeans to balance out the volume. The key to making gingham look chic, rather than childish, is to counterbalance with solid-coloured separates which echo the tones of the print.
Off-the-shoulder shirred gingham cotton blouse, £95, Madewell
This summery Bardot-style top will allow you to tap into the 'cold shoulder' trend whilst cannily concealing bingo wings.
Wrapover blouse, £29.99, H&M
This pretty wrap style blouse updates the classic checked shirt with an on-trend feminine twist. It will look great with slim-fit jeans or white capri pants. For a smarter look, team with a pencil skirt.
Gingham trousers, £39.99, Zara
Team tailored gingham trousers with a crisp white shirt and black loafers for a perennially stylish look. Add an of-the-moment twist to a timelessly stylish ensemble by picking this adorable ruffled pair.
Cotton rich gingham ruffle midi skirt, £35, Marks & Spencer
Team this stunning statement skirt with a fuss-free T-shirt and strappy block-heeled sandals for an effortless feel.
Gingham button front dress, £45, Warehouse
Yes, you can wear a gingham dress without looking like you've raided the school uniform department. This chic '50s style number will have you looking like a modern Marilyn. Just team with sandals or court shoes.
Myra gingham dress, £129, Hobbs
If you don't want to get your arms out, slip a shirt underneath this pinafore-style midi dress. For an office-ready look, add a statement belt.
Black/white check trench coat, £30, Next
A printed coat makes a great accent to a simple, neutral-toned outfit - this classic trench will see you through summer picnics into autumn and beyond.
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