I love cats, cats of all size, their elegant moves, their jumping abilities, their faces, and the color pattern of those, who have a pattern. Therefore, it is no wonder that I love leopard printed patterns on everything from shoes over cardigans and jackets to tights. In this Leopard Print Style Guide, I share with you my secrets how to wear the print in an effortlessly stylish way. Read and see to get inspired.
- Leopard Print from Red Light to Work Appropriate
- Try It with Neutrals or Bold Color Solids
- When Wearing Leopard Print Tights, Make Them the Statement
- Snow-leopard Is a Great Desaturated Choice
- Try Leopard Print with Stripes, Florals, Tartan and Alike
- How to Style Leopard Pattern Coats, Jackets and Vests
- Which Colors go with Leopard Print?
- What to Wear with Leo Print Shoes?
- Wrapping Up the Leopard Print Style Guide
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Leopard print has been around already so long. It became mainstream and nearly a classic in recent years. In the 1950s, the exotic print was for date night and bombshells style only. In the 60s, this print was associated with nightlife, sexy underwear or night gowns. You wouldn’t had worn it to the office, church or any formal occasion!
How times and fashion changed in the last 60 years! In a couple of decades, the current decade will probably be known as the time of the leopard print conquering the day life and even the office.
The daring fashionista can even mix this feline print with florals, stripes or any other large geometric fabric adornment. When you chose the beasts natural fur colors
But let’s take one step at a time to get the most out of the trendy (or new classic ?) It piece.
Black is a fool proof pairing. It makes the feline piece the statement (see photo below).
The neutral colors of the sweater in the photo below permit grounding the look with another color than black. Using another color than black creates interest as most women ground their looks with that color. It’s important to repeat colors to tie the look together. Here the brown tights and heels do the job. The heeled loafers elongate the leg and the belt adds some shape. More on how to best accessorize with belts.
Leopard-print tights are a statement. The safe way to look sophisticated in the animal print trend is only one fur print item at a time. The next two explained example photos feature two inspirations how to style leo tights.
In the above example, the gray background color of the print ties the gray cardigan and chocolate sheath dress together. The plateau high heel loafers and bag add extra pops of color in burgundy and fuchsia to the otherwise all neutrals business casual winter work outfit.
The example below shows how to integrate the leo print tights into an outerwear look. The shearling motorcycle jacket and gray pom pom hat sort of repeat the colors of the tights. More on how to wear the patterned tights trend.
More on how to wear patterned tights.
Wearing stylish animal print outfits is a big trend. But picking the right cut and direction of the spots can do a lot for your look. A V-neck and vertical design of the pattern like in the photo below have a slimming effect. Going for a snow leopard is a cool twist on the eternal classic of black and white.
Of course, you can wear this print as an all neutral look with a gray, black or white bottom. Add dress pants, skirt, jeans, leggings, or even leather pants in these colors. Pair the look with matching shoes, pearls or silver jewelry. It’s a recipe for a posh and stylish look in no time. Like with the brown-beige-black version of the feline’s fur print any bold jewelry color works well as a fashion statement.
We saw a lot of mixing prints and patterns on the runways. Of course, you can do so with this feline design. Just remember to
- Wear it as a neutral
- Ground your look with a color that is common to all pieces, and
- Select designs of distinct different size.
Stylist tip: You can mix all patterns when they are gray.
In its natural colors – either in brown-black or black-gray-white – the design like any neutral works with about anything from floral to stripes, plaid, colors. Or go for a real bold statement colors like explained later in this post.
Stylist tip: When you are a beginner in mixing prints/patterns, pick another print in similar colors and ground your look with black tights. The following photos feature a simple-to-copy mixed patterns, desaturated look in gray shades between black and white.
The feline motif looks great with bold colors. Thus, wearing a natural color, faux fur vest like the one in the photo below works with all combinations of grounding neutral and solid bold, unmuted color.
In the case of jackets and coats, pay attention to the pieces that will show in the outerwear outfit More tips how to style your outerwear here. As a rule of thumb whatever hem is visible should be about 4 inches (10 cm) longer than your coat/jacket for a balanced stylish appearance. Jeans with sweaters or shirts tucked in work well. For the color and print combinations use the tips discussed above. More on how to style an animal print coat.
Of course, all colors that are in the print. The pattern looks also great with orange or red. More examples of an orange skirt with leopard print boots. For inspirational example outfits with red see what to wear for Valentine’s Day.
How to style footwear with feline pattern is the same as laid out above.
When you like the tips and advice on the blog, you will also like my book How to Dress for Success in Midlife. Buy your copy now.
More on wearing tall boots.
In a nutshell, the most important aspects are:
- To always go for a motif in the natural colors of the feline.
- Style the pattern like a neutral with clean (unmuted) colors.
- When combining with other designs, chose different scales, and ground your look with a common color. More on how to look ageless in animal prints.
Photos of me: G. Kramm
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