Seeing Spots

collage

Leopard print.  Love it or hate it, it has been around for a long time and it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon.  I was wearing leopard print ballet flats yesterday with a black dress when a woman commented to me that she thinks leopard print is tacky.  While I agree that it can be “tacky” if not worn properly, I believe it can be incredibly classy if worn in the right way.  The leopard coat for example is a classic.  It was incredibly popular in the 1960’s.  Style icons such as Sophia Loren, Jackie Kennedy, and Bridgette Bardot all donned the the bold print.  Even Queen Elizabeth got onboard with the trend!  Anne Bancroft showed us how moms can rock the look in “The Graduate” and Kate Moss is still keeping the leopard print coat modern in the twenty first century.  While the leopard coat can add a lot of drama to any outfit, you can opt for a more subtle look if the coat is too bold for your taste.

BR Mad Men leopard trench coat- saved by chicncheapliving

With its smaller print, this Banana Republic trench is an updated version of the classic look.

My personal favorite way to add a little flair to my outfits is the leopard print flat.  There are so many styles to choose from–whether it be ballet flats or loafers.  The leopard flat looks great with a skirt, jeans, a dress–even shorts!

shoes

lp shoes

Michael Kors makes a fabulous flat with a gold pointy toe and calf hair. Tory Burch designed her version of the leopard flat a couple of years ago with a rounded toe and her iconic gold logo medallion.

beyonce and co

If the shoes are not for you, try a leopard print scarf instead!  You can find leopard scarves in many variations of colors and fabrics.  The scarf is a stylish way to add some interest to your outfit when the rest of your attire is neutral and simple.

coach-khaki-ocelot-oblong-scarf-product-1-12012946-854081728_large_flex

Coach makes an oblong scarf in ocelot print. The camel color makes it easy to pair with most ensembles and the thicker fabric is great for the upcoming Fall months!

hendricks and co

Finally, you can instantly dress up your outfits by adding a leopard print handbag.  Whether you prefer a satchel or a clutch, the leopard bag always looks timeless and adds an elegant touch to a monochromatic look.

leopardhandbags

The J Crew satchel makes a great bag for the weekends and the Kate Spade tote, with it’s leopard printed sides, is perfect for the office.

Tips for making your leopard print look classy, not tacky:

  • Limit leopard print to only one piece of your ensemble.  If you are wearing a leopard coat, don’t also wear leopard print shoes and/or handbag.
  • If you are wearing leopard heels, make sure your skirt or dress is knee length or longer.  Opt for smaller heels, such as kitten heels–never platforms.  With a shorter skirt, it’s best to wear leopard flats.
  • When wearing leopard print, it’s best to pair it with solid colors–not other prints.  Leopard print looks best with black, white, camel, and red.
  • For an absolute classic look:  try wearing black trousers or skirt with a white blouse, red-orange lipstick, and one leopard print accent piece.

Here’s to you, Mrs. Robinson!

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