This spring, everything's coming up daisies.
Bright, fun jewelry and accessories are back from the '60s. Big daisy earrings, colorful brooches in retro hues of lime, yellow and orange and handbags with flower-power appliques have returned to complement those simple sheath dresses of spring.
Daisies have sprouted up everywhere, from the immaculate interiors of Giorgio South Coast Plaza, which carries a straw hat covered in yellow daisies for $135, to thrift stores that are suddenly finding buyers for vintage '60s daisy pins.
To those who weren't around in the '60s, it's a mod look--as fresh as, well, a daisy.
"I was born in 1970," says Wendy Halvorson of Capistrano Beach, who began sporting daisy pins from thrift stores long before they blossomed into a major trend.
"I like a lot of the '60s clothes and colors. It's non-contemporary. It . . . makes more of a statement."
Others who remember wearing these big bright baubles the first time around aren't so eager to relive the past.
"Young people in their upper teens and 20s (are) buying this stuff--the great big, ugly daisies. I'm glad we left it behind," says Connie LaHaie, manager of Classic Closet in San Clemente, a thrift store operated by the Goodwill that sells used clothes and accessories.
Once daisy pins and other '60s baubles languished on the shop's shelves for months.
"Five years ago these things would have been considered very clunky," LaHaie says. "Now, the bigger and gaudier, the better.
"We had two of the daisy pins in, and they went as soon as we put them in the case."
While some of the new mod jewelry looks like carbon copies of '60s designs, most has a contemporary look for the '90s, thanks to updated colors and materials such as Lucite.
"You hear a lot of older customers saying, 'Oh no, they're bringing back the '60s,' " says Shairee Collins, fashion coordinator for Nordstrom in Orange County. "But there's a modern '90s feel to it.
"The younger customer appreciates it. It's new to them."
In the '60s, costume jewelry was made out of metal instead of the plastics used today, she says. In addition, the painted petals on the daisies weren't as acid bright as they are today.
Collins recently sported green and yellow Lucite daisy drop earrings and matching pink daisy rings with a bright pink suit, proving that the mod look can be adapted to career wear.
"You can take a basic suit and update it with daisy earrings depending on how you mix it. It makes things more fun," she says.
Nordstrom has an array of '60s-inspired jewelry for spring, including huge drop earrings with daisies made of white and black Lucite, brightly colored daisy rings and 3-inch yellow daisy pins. If you don't like daisies, there are earrings and bracelets with big dangling balls in yellow, orange and green Lucite.
Most of the mod jewelry sells for under $20, but some costume jewelry designers have incorporated the flower fad into pricier lines. Rings, bracelets and earrings by Ben Amun feature gold-tone daisies made of multicolored stones and sell for about $40 to $80.
In addition to jewelry, one can find soft fabric purses with big daisy appliques. One small white tote comes with pink, green and yellow daisies, available for $62.
Bullock's in South Coast Plaza has blue and green daisy earrings by Catherine Stein that duplicate the '60s look, and more contemporary earrings made of big pink acrylic ovals or yellow doughnut-shaped drops, for about $15.
Mod looks can be found in the toniest of boutiques.
Giorgio Beverly Hills carries a straw hat completely covered in yellow fabric daisies that have black sequins in the centers.
"It's a unique piece to bring in," says Joann Bolduc, manager of the Giorgio boutique. "It's the only one we have, and it's going to require that special person coming in to buy it. Put it with a black suit, you'll have the perfect outfit."
Cost-conscious shoppers are digging through thrift stores and vintage clothing stores for original pieces that can be had for a few dollars.
Locals Only, a vintage clothing store in Laguna Beach, has found customers eager to buy '60s clothing and accessories, especially fitted cotton sheath dresses, straw handbags in picnic basket shapes and big oval-shaped sunglasses.
Owner Larry Craig recently sold a denim jacket covered with daisy pins that he found digging through thrift stores.
"I found more than 70 pieces in about two weeks. They're easy to find," he says.
One customer, Kerry Cassill of Balboa Island, bought a bag full of daisies from Locals Only.
"I design hats, so I bought the pins to use on the hats," she explains.
"I really like the daisies. I remember all of that stuff from the '60s but I wasn't old enough to wear it back then."
To her, hip huggers, short fitted sheaths and daisy pins are new again. Says Cassill:
"It's that nice, innocent, fresh look."