15 tips to look sophisticated in animal prints

#turningFashionIntoStyle How to look sophisticated in animal prints post logo
  1. Signature clothes of the decades
  2. How to wear animal print in midlife
    • Which animal prints look work over 40
    • Outfit inspirations with animal prints
    • What doesn’t work for ageless style in animal pattern

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Signature clothes of the decades

The 1950s are known for the wide skirts, the 60s for the Mod. In the 70s, it was the era of Bohemian style, flared legs, tie-dye T-shirts. The 80s had the wide shoulders and long jackets, the 90s were black everything and jeans with crotches hanging at the knees and exposing the Y. The 00s were famous for the empire-style tops that made every woman to look like she were pregnant. Do I have to say that I did not like them?

The 10s probably will be known for the leopard print everything like leopard print tights, footwear, coats, dresses, bags, you name it. This print is thought of as a neutral, on the contrary to the 50s, when it was for date night.

As a neutral leopard is mixed with plaid, stripes or floral as well as solid colors others than red – again on contrary to the sexbomb look of the 50s. … and yes, unless worn tight, super mini, extreme cleavage, it is totally work appropriate in classic cuts. So to speak it lost it’s “sex appeal.”

Now let’s mix things up a bit in the zoo and take a look at animal prints in general.

advanced style outfit with snake print booties

snake print fall booties

outfit idea how to wear snake print in midlife
Outfit details: Snake print fall booties, unbranded duster, GNW tights, Hermes collier de chien bangle, and eShakti motorcycle dress for an ageless style in fall/winter (all own)

How to wear animal print in midlife

How to look sophisticated in animal prints without looking like one wants to feature the animal for Halloween is a challenge at any age. But the older one gets, the more urgent it is to get it right. Here I want to share what works and what does not.

Which animal prints look work over 40

  1. Animal prints should be in the colors (or close to the colors) of the animal’s fur or skin so you can treat the animal print as a neutral.
  2. Only one animal print and item per outfit unless your style is Eclectic Posh. You don’t know your style? Take this free online style quiz to find out.
  3. Animal print requires tailored clean, sleek and simple cuts like a shirt dress, a pencil skirt, cardigan. Style them like you style your neutrals (see OOTD).
  4. Animal print scarves, pumps, clutches, totes, satchels are great bets and the easiest to style.
  5. Wearing animal print with pieces that harmonize with the print rather than compete with each other it is a safe bet as well.
  6. Leopard print with red is a classic.
  7. Try leopard print with spots larger than the floral print that picks up at least three colors of the leopard print. It may or may not work. Read risky! See this guide for mixing prints and patterns.

When you liked these free outfit tips, and want styling tips for all kind of dressing situation in midlife, buy my book How to Dress for Success in Midlife.

Outfit inspirations with animal prints

Below you can find some inspirations for how to style animal print over 40.

midlife woman in leopard and floral print GNW leopard print cardigan worn as top over eShakti floral print dress with H-belt, Michael Kors plateau sandals, Jaeger tote (all own) and wooden watch c/o Jord shown as an example for mixing animal print with floral

over 50 woman wearing leopard print pumps Levis denim jacket with G-III suede skirt, Aldo leopard print pony hair pumps, Ray Ban sunglasses, Celine tote (all own) and striped T-shirt c/o Marine Layer. Leopard print pumps are a classic

over 40 woman wearing a giraffe print I.N.C. chocolate brown leather pants with knitwit giraffe print sweater, layering top (similar here), Hermes collier de chien bangle, statement necklace and Clarks booties (all own)

mature stylish woman with leather pants, sweater, leopard print scarf winter business casual look Chocolate brown I.N.C. leather pants, GNW Luxe cashmere wool sweater accessorized with thrifted leopard print silk scarf, and booties (all own)

blogger in posh casual trendy outfit with denim and animal print J. Crew burgundy snake print straight skirt, Ray Ban sunglasses, Levis medium wash jacket, Judith Leiber chain belt, Festina watch, pantyhose, Covington pumps, Hermes collier de chien bangle (all own)

over 50 years old fashion blogger in floral and snowleopard cardigan with tweed skirt Example Eddie Bauer tweed skirt with Notations floral print cardigan worn as top and snowleopard print cardigan, Modalo Pippa bag, Paloma Picasso sunglasses, Hermes collier de chain bangle, Covington ankle strap pumps (all own)

midlife style blogger in business casual work outfit with skirt, top, cardigan and leo print boots Max Mara skirt, Moda International cardigan knotted around the waist, V-neck sweater, smoky quartz bracelet and statement necklace, Yes Saint Laurent top handle bag, twigg’s pantyhose, and Manolo Blahnik boots (all own)

style blogger Nicole working out at the gym in a zebra top Zebra top c/o Covered Perfectly, own Very Fine Dance Sports shoes, and No Nonsense leggings

over 50 years old fashion blogger in leo sweater, sheath winter outfit with over-the-knee boots Unbranded cashmere leopard sweater, Eli Tahari sheath dress, Kate Moss for Longchamp bag, GNW tights, and Dior over-the-knee boots (all own)

over 50 years old woman in classic winter outfit Leopard diamond jacket with Eli Tahari leather dress, Dior over-the-knee boots, Kate Moss for Longchamp bag, leather gloves, pill box hat (all own)over 50 woman doning leopard patterned tight Oliveo long leather skirt with GNW Luxe cashmere wool sweater, GNW leopard print tights, Nine West plateau heeled loafers, Hermes collier de chien bangle and Hermes enamel bangles (all own)

over 50 years old blogger in snake print pants Sienna Studio snake print leather pants with GNW Luxe wool cashmere sweater, Moda silk cashmere cardigan, Kieselstein Cord belt and buckle, peridot beads and pearl necklace (all own)

mature lady in zebra print GNW zebra print cardigan worn as top with white Newports News leather pants, Jake’s hounds-tooth blazer, Ivanka Trump pumps, Moschino belt, and 3.1 Philip Lim tote (all own)

midlife style blogger layering a leopard print GNW leopard print cardigan layered under Ann Taylor cashmere sweater over Sienna Studio leather pencil skirt with Harley Davidson booties (all own)

fashion blogger in business casual office looks with snake design skirt, sweater, tights and boots Anne Klein red turtleneck sweater, GNW opaque tights, Söfft booties, Hermes collier de chien leather bracelet, Hermes collier de chien bangle, smoky quart flower buckle with wide leather belt, Altuzarra snake design skirt (all own) and pearl studs c/o Wendy Mignot

style blogger Nicole donning a fall outfit with three layers in shades of gray and green GNW print cardigan, Hermes collier de chien belt, Sienna Studio skirt, Steve Madden lizard imprint green pumps, triple necklace, pantyhose, Gucci bamboo handle ostrich bag (all own), green motorcycle jacket c/o Leatherskin and olive halftee c/o Halftee

Nicole of High Latitude Style in leopard cardigan and orange skirt Max Mara straight orange skirt, Paloma Picasso x belt, Hermes collier de chien bangle, Valentino studded boots, Seiko watch, statement earrings (all own)

mature fashion blogger with animal print tee and leather skirt 3/4 sleeve zebra print v-neck Tee c/o Covered Perfectly with own Sienna Studio leather skirt, dagwood flower bead necklace, Hermes collier de chien bangle, GNW tight, and Harley Davidson booties

If you liked any of these outfit inspirations, it would help me if you pinned them to your own Pinterest board. It’s a great way that your friends, family, and others can see them too.

What doesn’t work for ageless style in animal pattern

  1. Animal prints from head to toe
  2. Different animal prints in one outfit
  3. Animal prints in colors that are far away from the actual animal’s fur or skin colors
  4. Tight, short, and shiny leopard dresses, skirts or tops
  5. Baggy clothes with animal print
  6. Ruffles, embroidery, sequins, lace and animal print all together in one outfit
  7. Ruffle animal print tops or tired animal print skirts
  8. Animal print patchwork in bags or leather jackets

When you liked this post tweet your friends How to look sophisticated in animal prints over 40.

How do you style your animal prints? What are your style challenges with respect to animal prints?

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Photos: G. Kramm

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