Leopard print is everywhere in 2018. That Realisation Par midi-skirt that saturated our Instagram feeds this Summer triggered a leopard print invasion not only on social media but IRL too.
I have long embraced leopard print and made it a vital part of my wardrobe. Treating it as a neutral will do that. But in order to do so, I had to stop thinking of it as something only worn by older women with big hair who troll singles bars hitting on much younger men (not that there’s anything wrong with that). There’s way to wear it and then there’s ways to wear it.
Here are ten ways to wear leopard, and make it more flash and less trash.
1. the leopard coat
The leopard coat goes with everything. Everything. Choose a larger, stylised print for a coat to make it more current. Keep the smaller, more detailed leopard print for more delicate pieces like skirts and tops.
2. in the details
If you’re not a convert to the cult of the leopard and are still a little sceptical about it, keep it in the details. Scarves, belts, handbags, shoes, under-shirts peaking through a button down or go-fast stripes on a pair of pants.
3. the leopard dress
I am a huge fan of the leopard print dress. Ganni has come out with some absolutely divine specimens the last few seasons. To ensure you achieve maximum chic with yours, always choose natural fabrics like silk or cotton, or non-stretch blends like viscose. If it has a bit of room and floatiness, it will always look chic. A little tip for any leopard print piece (not just dresses): make sure you can’t see the repetition of the pattern. If you can see the “tile” then it just looks cheap.
4. with stripes and florals
Treating leopard print as a neutral will open up a whole world of outfit combos and possibilities beyond your wildest dreams. Leopard with stripes is an easy one – I love the contrast. Somehow it just works. For florals, keep the florals and the leopard equal in their design – large floral prints with a larger leopard design, and a finer floral with a smaller leopard print.
5. with blue
A combo that just seems to work is leopard with blue. Its the yellow-ish tones in the leopard that contrast so brilliantly with the blue. And the brighter the blue the better.
6. the midi skirt
Yes, the aforementioned leopard midi skirt is everywhere. But that doesn’t necessarily make it a trend that will disappear. I’d argue its a classic that you can wear for years to come. The leopard makes it sassy, and the length makes it classy.
7. corporate leopard print
Does leopard really have a place in the office? I would argue yes, if done right. You could play it safe and keep your leopard in the details (see above). Or, you could push the envelope out and combine it with more conservative, tailored pieces in order to sneak it in under the radar. Leopard pencil skirts or trousers with a sharp blazer and even sharper heels will take you to the boardroom and beyond. And make sure it’s a sharp leopard print. If the print is blurred, there hasn’t been great quality control and chances are, the piece won’t look great in any situation.
8. At the beach
This summer, I took my leopard game to Mykonos. This was primarily in the form of a swimsuit and the silkiest, floatiest palazzos you’d ever want to breeze around Mykonos Town in. The key to the summer leopard is the fabrics and fit. They’ve got to be natural fabrics, and breezy, billowy silhouettes.
9. Leopard + Camel + Stripes
The leopard + camel + stripes combo is such a favourite of mine, I dedicated an entire post to it. It just works.
10. Leopard print Pants
Nothing says “party” like leopard print corduroy pants and a black silk body shirt. If you’re not wearing this combo come party season this year, then that’s on you.
Here’s my pick of this season’s leopard