The Budget Babe | Affordable Fashion & Style Blog

Summer Fashion Trend 2008: Ikat Prints

Debbie Matenopoulos, Brittany Snow and Kristen Bell don ikat-inspired dresses.

Ethnic-inspired ikat is the "it" print of the season, so it seems, and I'm in love. This style of cloth that uses a resist dyeing technique similar to tie-dye has been used for centuries by cultures all over the world, from South-East Asia to South America (thank you, Wikipedia!).

You may not have known the word "ikat" until recently, but I'm sure you'd recognize this design when you see it. I feel like I've seen ikats used in home decor for a while, and I've definitely seen ikats at The Art Institute of Chicago (my fave art museum) - some of the handwoven ikats from back in the day (I'm so technical) are truly works of art. This is probably why this fabric reminds me of, well, art, culture, travel, exotic locales, and faraway places - all that good stuff that fills our daydreams. The word "escapism" comes to mind...

But never mind me: Ikat is a gorgeous way to get some printed pieces into your wardrobe, and it can be done on a budget thanks to the trickle down from the runway to the high street. This summery ikat tank ($49) by INC International Concepts at Macy's is a sweet and simple way to wear this trend. Another effortless way to incorporate some ikat into your wardrobe would be with a scarf, like this woven number ($9.80) from Forever 21.

And naturally, Topshop has an assortment of stylish ikat options, including this long red and white cami ($49), a folksy blue ikat skirt ($62), or a breezy ikat sun dress ($62). Leave it to ASOS to bring us some of the most high-fashion ikats without the high pricetag - we're loving this ikat shift dress ($60.56) for warm weather partying, or this Ikat mini puffball skirt ($60.56) that looks plucked straight from the Etro SS08 catwalk.

I like the ikat prints a lot! Thanks for low budget links. I might get that F21 scarf.
#1 Psyche (Homepage) on 2008-06-11 10:16 (Reply)
The Jenni Kayne dress that Kristen Bell is wearing is so beautiful!
#2 danz (Homepage) on 2008-06-11 19:14 (Reply)
Your comment that you've seen Ikat prints in home fashion is very astute! My belief is that fashion TRENDS are really the assimilation of cultures and their artifacts into our own. This occurs in three stages: 1) we eat their food 2) we decorate our houses like them and lastly 3) we dress like them. Assimilation
generally takes 3-10 years and progresses through the three phases. If you want to know what the next big trend is, watch what the foodies are eating.
#3 White Mountain Dave on 2008-06-16 13:16 (Reply)
I love ikat and asian fabrics and very pleased it have been finally noticed and apprecaited. I design and produce my collections of women's wear with ikat fabrics and hand-embroidered fabrics from Central Asia. Have a look at my collections on
#4 dina (Homepage) on 2008-07-22 15:25 (Reply)
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