One Woman's Funny Zara Party Trick

Photo: Courtesy of Zara.
My mom is one stylish woman — she reads Refinery29, shops at Everlane and AYR, and her leather moto jacket is her go-to. She also has a knack for spotting a Zara floral from a mile away, which is something I (and everyone else who is kind of obsessed with Zara) was dying to learn more about.

Zara's spring edit, named "Spring Bloom," is brimming blooming with noteworthy prints (yes, the brand's creative minds have clearly never watched The Devil Wears Prada). But, what exactly makes a Zara floral different from any other? Allow us to explain.

1. The Solid-Colored Background: Most of Zara's floral patterns rest on a solid background, typically of white, ivory, navy blue, terra-cotta red, black, or peachy pink.

2. The Scale: These florals aren't tiny, à la Cabbage Patch Kids. Instead, they're a bit zoomed-in and slightly oversized, with each flower typically at least one to two inches, creating an allover pattern that's pretty in-your-face (which explains why you can see them from a mile away).

3. The Actual Flowers:
Zara has expensive taste in the flowers it uses in its prints, meaning you'll likely never see a floral at the retailer that looks like this or this. Instead, it uses elegant peonies, irises, palm leaves, orchids, and other flowers you or I probably don't know the names of — including those that were likely invented and created by a computer. They're typically luxe-looking, detailed, and multidimensional. And they do a pretty good job of avoiding looking, well, cheap.

4. The Color Palette:
These florals may be Victorian in aesthetic, but they always come in a modern color palette, with an element of contrast. There's no faded, aged-looking yellows, browns, or run-of-the-mill primary colors; it's all vibrant, Pantone-approved hues like chartreuse, burgundy, periwinkle, poppy red, and so on. Plus, with so many of Zara's merchandise likely based off high-end runway collections, the brand has no excuse not to be on-trend with this season's colors.

Whether or not this cohesiveness is intentional, it seems like a killer undercover branding move, no? So, next time you're in New York City (or any other place where Zara wearers are prevalent), we challenge you to a little game of spot-the-florals. To jump on the bandwagon yourself, click on for a visual (and shoppable) selection of the pieces that have us rethinking florals for spring.

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