Bye Bye Blues: Our Top Picks for Printed Denim

The dark ages of denim are over and we’re finally emerging from a time of over-embellishment and back-pocket billboards. Shuck off your A.P.C.s or Helmut Lang blacker-than-black dark wash jeans and lighten up for the summer heat. Current/Elliot takes the title as the trend’s torchbearer with the brand’s florals, which were seen everywhere from Coachella to the pages of street style blogs a-plenty during London fashion week. Whatever your style, there’s a print that will make you skip your basic blues and slip on this season’s must-have.

Current/Elliott the Stiletto Skinny Jeans in Haysack Floral

Current/Elliott the Stiletto in Haysack Floral

L.A. girls denim queens Emily Current and Merrit Elliot (the duo behind Current/Elliot) became denim darlings in 2010 when they released their line of super-comfortable boyfriend jeans. After the crazy success of the style (not to mention having every other denim label recreate that signature slouch), it’s no surprise to find that they’re still pushing denim trends forward. The antiqued floral in the Stiletto style ($214) is called the Haysack, which quiets down the loud pattern by adding a touch of tan and dusty hues of pink and green.

As usual, the jeans have Current/Elliot’s signature blend of stretch and cotton, making these as  comfortable as your favorite worn-in jeans right from the very first wear.

Available at Nordstrom stores and

Mother the Looker in A Day in Paradise

Mother the Looker in A Day in Paradise

The new kid on the block, Mother denim started with the idea that jeans could be comfortable (a far cry from the break-in period required by other popular brands such as A.P.C. and Nudie) and sexy at the same time. Striving to be both nurturing and soft while still being flattering, the brand is branching from its faded flares and deep rinses by releasing eye-catching prints such as its A Day in Paradise ($250) jeggings.

Instead of taking an abstract print or pattern, Mother designers Tim Kaeding and Lela Tillem chose to recreate a postcard-ready photo of the tropics right on their cult-favorite cut, the Looker. Cashmere-soft like every other pair of Mother jeans, these make a huge statement. So be ready for some major fashion moments and flashbulbs.

Available at

Joe's Jeans Skinny Fit in Lilac

Joe’s Jeans Skinny Fit in Lilac

If vintage florals or photorealism isn’t your style, a more abstract, artistic print such as the watercolor-inspired pattern on Joe’s Jeans Skinny fit ($179) are a more subtle choice without sacrificing style or skipping the statement denim trend. The darker palette means you won’t have to step out of your comfort zone quite as far and you’ll be able to throw on more of your favorite tops without clashing too much.

Joe’s has also crafted these jeans out of a special blend of fabrics that make this pair lightweight, stretchy and thin — perfect to help you survive the summer heat. The style is also available in other prints and colors.

Available at Joe’s Jeans boutiques and

7 for all Mankind the Skinny Second Skin Legging in Ancient Pyramid Denim

7 for all Mankind the Skinny Second Skin Legging in Ancient Pyramid Denim

If you can’t let go of your favorite blues, never fear: The 7 for all Mankind Skinny Second Skin Leggings ($189) takes a color that you’re comfortable with and adds an ultra-trendy tribal print. Think that this look is just for music festivals and hipsters? Think again. Native American-inspired patterns have been spotted everywhere from Rodarte to Ralph Lauren, making them as mainstream as pinstripes and polka dots. Well, almost.

Pair them with this season’s breezy tunics or more classic pieces, for looks that range from bohemian to buttoned up. The laser-printed pattern lends a vintage feel to these leggings and the wash is butter-soft and cut short for a clean, crisp look.

(See below to win your very own pair!)

Available at 7 for all Mankind boutiques and

Adriano Goldschmeid Legging Ankle in Pin Dot Black

Adriano Goldschmeid Legging Ankle in Pin Dot Black

For those who want bottoms that whisper more than scream, AG’s Pin Dot ($178) style takes a sartorial staple — the pattern’s a standard for men’s ties and socks as well as girly frocks — and slaps them on stretchy twill fabric. Classic five-pocket styling means you’ll be able to wear these with bow blouses for a sexy secretary look and menswear-inspired staples for corner-office appropriate sexy.

For girls who channel Audrey but still want to get in on the trend, these cropped standouts are a must-have for the summer season.

Available at Adriano Goldschmeid boutiques and

Want to win a pair of printed jeans? We’ve teamed up with 7 for all Mankind to give away a pair of the brand’s best-selling Skinny Second Skin Leggings in Laser Ikat (worth $189)! For more information, see below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Author:Christopher Luu for Fashion Trends Daily

Christopher Luu is a Fashion Trends Daily Senior Writer and Menswear Editor.