Ah, leopard print. I really do love you. Whether you’re tight and skimpy, bold and furry or ruffly and flowing, I want you to encase my body and pass unto me every ounce of sass and fierceness that you hold. And yet, no matter how much I love you and preach your wonders, it seems that you are still met with an abundance of resentment and fear.
Look… despite my love for this sassy-ass print, I am all too aware that there is a huge amount of you that are scared of it. In fact, most compliments on my new Topshop blouse (pictured) or my velvet leopard print booties come in the form of: “Omg I love your top/boots! I wish I could wear that.”
Hold up, people. Please do give me one good reason as to why you can not ‘wear that’?! I think you’ll find that you can, you’re just scared to. I can’t help but feel as though leopard print has a bad rep for being attention-seeking. And the truth is, it is. Well, it can be. Let me tell you about my first and favourite leopard print piece of clothing I ever owned…
I was hitting the town, fake tanned beyond belief, 6 inch heels donned and annoyingly just 17. I needed a dress that screamed BDE (Big Dick Energy for those of you living under a rock). You know, to give me just enough confidence to make me seem just one year older and be granted entry to the sticky floored, vomit den that my friends and I classed as a nightclub. So I went to Topshop a few hours before and found the dress. Strapless, body con, jersey, slightly corseted and wonderfully leopard print. And it worked. And it kept working until I turned 20 and the carbs caught up with me.
For me, that’s exactly what leopard print represents. A sense that you can absolutely take on the day/evening/night and achieve whatever you bloody well want. With that, of course, comes some form of stand out. Unlike a wild leopard whose fur is used for camouflage, it is almost impossible to blend in when you are wearing leopard print. This is why it is of utmost importance to just own it.
I recently read an article on the ‘Do’s and Dont’s’ of wearing leopard print. The dont’s included: ‘Don’t wear anything too tight, it can definitely border too far.’ I nearly chucked my leopard print kitten heel at the screen. It is simply not true. If you are the sort of person that is having to read a ‘how to style leopard print’ article then yes, absolutely start off small. Perhaps a pair of pumps or some leopard detailing on a t-shirt? But who is to say you shouldn’t wear tight leopard print if you look bloody good in it? The only piece of style advice I have for how to style leopard print is for the love of God just WERK IT and ignore the haterz.