All You Need to Know About the Leopard Print Trend

Table of Contents

    What is Leopard Print?

    Leopard Print is a print which imitates the markings of a leopard’s skin. In the case of faux fur, it is used to replicate the appearance of real leopard skin, but it is also used in combination with a wide range of colours as a print for clothing, fashion accessories and interior design.

    What Does Leopard Print Represent?

    It is important to distinguish between leopard skin and leopard print. Leopard skin was popular in high fashion up to the 1960’s, at which time it denoted wealth power and sophistication. Leopard print does not involve the slaughter of rare animals and is valued for its eye-catching quality. When used in female clothing it can signify independence, confidence, sexuality and nonconformity, depending on the nature of the clothing or accessory. Men are less likely to wear leopard print, unless they are a rock star or are consciously striving to shock. That said, wearing leopard print footwear or a short-sleeved shirt signifies non-conformist confidence.

    Is Leopard Print 80’s?

    Animal print, much of it leopard print, was everywhere in the eighties, so in that sense it is a design which will always be associated with that period of history. However, it is certainly not a design feature forever chained to a particular period of history, like the codpiece is to the court of Elizabeth the first. Mother nature is simply the world’s best print designer and leopard print is a timeless design.

    Is Leopard Print on Trend?

    Absolutely, fashion shows have been dominated by leopard print designs in 2018 & 2019, but then it’s never really gone away, and it seems unlikely that it ever will.

    Can Guys Wear Leopard Print?

    In a word, yes, though unless you’re a rock star it is unlikely that a leopard print jacket and jeans will constitute your regular day wear. A little leopard print goes a long way, so men are more likely to wear it as trimming on a pair of deck shoes or maybe on a vacation short sleeved shirt.


    Can Leopard Print be Classy?

    Any material or design, when used inappropriately, can appear ridiculous. Were you to decorate your bedroom entirely in leopard print, the effect would be one of amusing kitsch. Leopard print is sometimes intentionally deployed for trashy effect, most strikingly in the punk fashion of the seventies, but it is much more frequently used to denote style and sophistication. For decades, leopard skin was worn by the rich and beautiful as the ultimate signifier of sophistication and sexual desirability. When Dylan writes, ‘I see you got your brand-new leopard skin pill-box hat’ he uses leopard print as the key distinguishing feature of doomed fashion icon, Eddie Sedgewick’s persona. Contemporary leopard print is heir to that legacy. Take a look at the shoots from 2018’s fashion shows for a reminder of just how classy leopard print can be.

    Will Leopard Print Go Out of Style?

    The popularity of leopard print will rise and fall but it will never go out of style. It is a pure design of such beauty that there will always be a place for it in our design world. What will change are the ways in which the design is deployed.

    What Colours Go With Leopard Print?

    Look on Pinterest and you’ll see leopard print paired with all the colours of the rainbow, including red. It’s a strong eye-catching pattern and it stands out best against a plain canvas, so avoid too many colours and too many patterns.

    Can You Wear Leopard Print with Red?

    Conventional wisdom says that the combination of leopard print and red looks ‘cheap' yet there are many celebrities and fashionistas who disregard this. In particular, a slick of red lipstick is often used in conjunction with leopard print. In the end it comes down to a matter of personal taste, besides which, ‘cheap’ might be just the look you are after! 

    Can You Wear Leopard Print with Stripes?

    Maybe you hate clashing prints but there are plenty of people out there who love them and will happily pair a stripy top with a leopard print jacket.

    Leopard Print with Floral

    Are there any fashion rules left to break? It may seem like a print too far but there are plenty of celebs out there who are mixing swathes of floral with a splash of leopard print.

    When to Wear Leopard Print

    Can You Wear Leopard Print All Year Round?

    Leopard print loves bright colours, so it’s a great choice for Spring and Summer but when else are you going to wear that sumptuous full-length leopard print coat other than in Autumn or Winter. Leopard is a print for all seasons.

    Can You Wear Leopard Print on Safari?

    One of the inescapable cultural messages encoded in leopard print is that of colonial appropriation, its popularity with a western audience originating in the splayed animal skins which adorned the drawing rooms of yesteryear’s big game hunters. In the light of that dubious cultural heritage it might seem a little awkward to wear the print on safari, even though your big game bagging will be confined to hi res shots through a camera lens. That said, we live in an age of post modern irony, so a leopard print bandana is unlikely to offend and is a playful acknowledgement of how times have changed.

    Can You Wear Leopard Print to a Christening?

    There’s nothing irreligious or disrespectful about leopard print, but remember, the star of the show is the infant in arms so perhaps you should rein in your flamboyance.

    Can You Wear Leopard Print to a Funeral?

    Leopard print is playful, sexy and a bit naughty, therefore it is not an appropriate choice for a funeral, unless, as is sometimes the case, the deceased has requested that mourners wear bright colours.

    Can You Wear Leopard Print to a Wedding?

    It’s fun, it’s life affirming: leopard print and weddings are a perfect marriage.

    Can You Wear Leopard Print to an Interview?

    At interview we present ourselves in a way which we hope will appeal to our prospective employers: we choose our language with care and we choose our clothing with care. Whether or not you choose to wear leopard print to an interview will depend on the kind of image you wish to project. So, if you want to suggest that you are creative, independent and confident, judicious use of leopard print might just do the trick. If, on the other hand, you want a serious, no nonsense image, you’re probably better off with conventional interview attire.

    Can You Wear Leopard Print to Work?

    Leopard print is inherently playful so there are some contexts where its connotations may be inappropriate or unhelpful, such as the classroom perhaps, but for work which foregrounds creativity and social interaction, it’s perfect.

    Leopard Print for the Over 50’s

    It is no longer compulsory for human beings to dress like grandparents from a fairy tale once they hit fifty. The world is full of glamorous over fifties, so enjoy your leopard print with a clear conscience. 

    Leave a comment

    All comments are moderated before being published

    Shop now

    Excellent Quality

    Buying online is always a risk but this apron is fantastic. It came in a timely manor and quality is great!

    Meg W.- The Classic Apron - Verified Buyer