Rudyard Kipling gave us the lowdown on how the leopard got its spots. However, those Just So Stories don’t explain why our favourite animal print remains just that; but then, it was a long time ago, and he probably wasn’t much of a fashionista, anyway.
So here it is again, joining cheetah, zebra, reptile and the rest, to prowl the catwalks this season. Whether it’s Burberry, Saint Laurent’s killer mini, or animal print sleeves on a leather jacket (Phillips Lim’s take on the biker uniform), you can track them everywhere. In London, Alice Temperley blended florals with creatures to stunning effect, and Ashish showed us how to pair demure with bold, or feline spots with zebra stripes.
Roberto Cavalli, who knows a thing or two about this trend, teamed maxis and kaftans with crochet, silver and leather, leaving Valentino’s long print-edged capes to sweep the runway. Kate Moss sported leopard print in London, Cheryl Cole wore a wild mac for Milan, and Karlie Kloss brought her Coach bag to New York’s shows.
The theory goes in some quarters that animal prints suggets a wild and untameable quality in women. It’s true that skins have been trending since cave girl days, but if you feel it’s become a bit of a cliché since then, you could refer offenders to the leopard spot T-shirt worn by One Direction’s Harry Styles to Burberry’s S/S14 London show last September. In its unwashed state, it later raised over £30,000 for charity – now, that’s wild.
Dress it down with skinny ripped jeans during the day (just like Mr Styles – a tip for the men here). In the evening, it will take your little black dress to another level. Soften the look with lace or sheer pastel shades, or stick to muted shades. Better still, use the latter as a excuse to add a bolder piece!
Choose plain fabrics if you prefer to make your statement with print-adorned bags and shoes instead – we especially love the shoes! See Gwen Stefani’s leopard spot fedora for a perfect example of this. Some stylists are binning prints that aren’t in their natural colours, but we think that unnusual colours speak, so follow your instincts.
There’s no point in trying to play down the leopard print, though, so embrace it. Paint your lips red, do the same with accessories, and go where you will be seen. It’s a jungle out there!
The featured photo is of an unknown model wearing a Leopard Print Dress Photography By Street FSN
Caroline Louis is wearing a leopard print coat from Les Explorateurs
Shea Marie is wearing a leopard print coat and boots from Steve Madden
Kristina Bazan is wearing a leopard print dress from Chloe and sunglasses from D Squared
Rachel Parcell is wearing a T-shirt from Alexander Wang, leopard print trousers from Current/Elliott and a bag from Valentino
Shea Marie is wearing a leopard print dress from Equipment, shoes from Jimmy Choo, bag from Philip Lim and the sunglasses are from Celine
Marta from Dear Diary is wearing leopard espadrilles from Agilis Barcelona
Julietta From Maffashion is wearing a leopard print skirt from Agnieszka Maciejak and a bag from Parfois
Merrick White is wearing leopard sneakers from H&M
Paulien is wearing a silk shirt from H&M, cropped jeans from New Look, Leopard Bag from C&A and snake textured snake slip-ons from Sooco Schoenen
Seams For A Desire Is Wearing Nude Jacket From Lavand, White Shirt And Shirt From Sheinside And Leopard Print Shoes From Carolina Herrera
La Petite Anglaise Is Wearing Leopard Print Divine Tote Bag From Furla, Camel Top And Gloves From Club Monaco, Black Skirt From Whistles, And Shoes From Hobbs
Andee Layne Is Wearing Black Top From For Love and Lemons, Black Trousers From Reformation And Leopard Print Bag From Jerome Dreyfuss
Kayture Is Wearing Leopard Print Coat From Zara, Leggings And Top From & Other Stories And Boots From Fabi
Seams For Desire Wearing T-shirt From Zara, Skirt FromFashion Pills, Sandals From Marypaz, Sunglasses From Marc Jacobs And Bag From Misako
Seams For Desire Wearing Leopard Print Shirt And Bag From Zara, White Shorts From Bershka And Sandals From Mango
Leopard Print Coat And New Balance Sneakers Via Scent Of Obsession
Kasia Tusk In River Island Leather Jacket , Black Dress And Leopard Print Shoes
Jules Wearing Leopard Print Coat From Zara, Denim shirt From Madewell, Jeans From Anine Bing, Boots From Isabel Marant, Bag Is Vintage Gucci Sunglasses From Ray Ban Tote From Clare Vivier
Blair Eadie In Leopard Print Jacket From Malene Birger, Denim Jeans From Current/Elliott, Shirt And Sweater From JCrew, And Burberry Sunglasses
Saint Laurent Monogramme Bag And I love Shoes In leopard Via Scent Of Obsession
FashionCoolture In Dafiti Dress Boots And Bag
Love The Scarf Leather Jacket Leopard/Leather Purse Combo Via It’s On Bitch
Fashion Blogger Alexandra Coat From Minusey And Chanel Boy Bag March 2014