Englishness and Floral Style
Paris led high fashion in the interwar years, yet affiliation with the romantic symbolism of flowers had long resonated as English national characteristic. In the interwar years, middle-class values were expressed through identification with country life and outdoor leisure pursuits. These were ideally played out against a backdrop of unspoilt fields and hedgerows, nostalgically associated with traditional rural England.
In economic terms English textile design's reputation abroad was based on a floral tradition. Designer Arthur Wilcock noted that a printed pattern needed to sell enough yards to drape all the windows of Regent Street to make it worthwhile for the manufacturer. The cost of engraving printing rollers was very high so it made commercial sense for manufacturers to produce patterns which would find a ready audience and which responded to the public's enduring preference for traditional flower patterns.