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Flower Power

Spring is eternal in San Francisco

The power of flowers cannot be more seeded or rooted than in San Francisco. Within this fertile ground 'flower power' was sown and blossomed in a complicated realm of cultural, musical and political forums during the 1960s and 1970s. This summer we take inspiration from the 60s & 70s in a single and simpler forum: the forum of fashion.

From Haight-Ashbury to the valleys of Noe and Hayes, the power of flowers has planted itself everywhere on clothing and accessories. Starting at the origin of the pollinating power is Haight-Ashbury where Shoe Biz showcases flats in tiny floral prints by Irregular Choice ($75). They come in pastels and contrast with a glossy band in pink, yellow or blue.

Practically next door is Ambiance which offers hair clips of tropical flowers ($10) that can strategically indicate your availability. The power of these flowers allows for subtle communication if you are single or in a relationship. Tucking it over the left ear means you are taken. Tucking it over the right ear means you are available.

Also nearby is Clobba which has several locations throughout the city. The 1950s full circle skirt captures a field of red poppies that swirl at the bottom and cinches with a shiny red satin sash ($58). For a more psychedelic feel, Held Over offers a shift dress ($18) hanging in the retro section. It is not for the faint-hearted since the flowers contort in every imaginable acid-tripped color that includes purples, greens, reds and oranges.

Azalea in Hayes Valley does not disappoint with its store name. It offers plenty of floral options which include Ranee K's baby blue, rose print salon top that ends in tiers of matching pale blue and lime green chiffon ($188).

Hop next door to Friend, a home furnishing store that is currently lit with Midsummer Light, which emanates with lighting fixtures of paper flower garlands that cascade from a suspended bulb ($59.50). Already popular in Europe, the design by Tord Boontje for Artenica has finally hit state side.

Alas the pollination has also spread to Fillmore at Heather where a field of floral prints, rings and hand bags may send you into a hay fever attack. Tara Jarmon's lime green jacquard double-breasted coat in a daisy print is offset with matching daisy shaped buttons ($415). A bold floral print in paint-by-number colors like blue, green and cream ($235) by Two Flowers Shirt, adds some whimsy with crochet navy and white flowers that adorn the collar or shirt front.

The best thing about this summer's version of flower power is that you don't have to water it to take care of it. Like the girl in Grateful Dead's "Scarlet Begonias" tune, you can just tuck those scarlet begonias into your curls. Just make sure it's tucked over the right ear if you are available. That's the power of a single flower.