How to Wear Animal Print for Smart-Casual Events

October 10, 2018

Let’s face it: when it comes to how to wear animal print, it’s not exactly the most straightforward pattern to master.

Why? Well, it’s bold, it’s out-there and – if you get it wrong – you could end up looking less like Kate Moss and more like Pat Butcher on a power trip.

(Not ideal.)

However, whether you love it or hate it, animal print stood out for all the right reasons at AW18 shows in zebra, leopard and snakeskin form.

And if you want to know how to wow others in animal print this season, I’ve got you covered, taking inspiration from the likes of Givenchy and Halpern.

After all, when done correctly, this trend is a great way to dress up and add a touch of sass to your outfit for smart-casual occasions, such as drinks with the girls, date night or a family dinner out.

How to Wear Animal Print for Smart-Casual Events

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Pick Out a Key Piece

How to wear animal print rule 101: stick to one key piece. 

Once you’re down and have got the 411 with this captivating pattern, you might want to consider adding other aspects to your outfit alongside your key piece. (For instance, striking leopard print boots with a leopard print top.)

However, generally speaking, avoid mixing more than one type of animal print and don’t include more than one key piece in your outfit. 

Why? Well, it just looks too much. I mean, if you want to wear head-to-toe leopard print then you might as well be a leopard – and it sure ain’t fancy dress here, pal. (Not until 31st October anyway…)

Are you a complete newbie to animal print? That’s okay, you can always start out small with a simple accent shoe or accessory and then build up your wardrobe from there.

Tone Down the Rest of Your Outfit

How to wear leopard print rule 102: because animal print is loud (and proud), the attention should solely be on your key piece. 

FYI, bright colours and animal print don’t tend to look good together. (Unless we’re talking about the colour red, because red is the exception to the rule and looks incredible with any kind of animal print.)

Instead, choose separates in neutral hues (like black, white and beige) that tone down your key piece while simultaneously allow it to take centre stage. This will pull everything together to create an effortless yet cohesive ensemble.

How to Wear Leopard Print

Shirt – Boohoo / Jeans – ASOS / Jacket – Topshop / Bag – Michael Kors, as before (similar here) / Belt – ASOS / Boots – Primark (similar here)

Amp Up the Ante with Your Hair and Makeup

Another tip for how to wear animal print for a smart-casual occasion? Keep accessories to a minimum, but use your going out makeup to make the look pop.

For instance, a statement lip is always a winner with animal print and can take your aesthetic from trashy to classy in a heartbeat.

You should also plan to make an impression with a hairstyle that’s just as fierce as your key piece, like mermaid-like waves or an elegant chignon.

Either way, use your hair and makeup to add drama and transform your look from everyday cool to smart-casual chic.

Try a Unique Print or Colour Variation

If you’re wondering how to wear animal print as a distinctive yet aesthetically pleasing ensemble, then ponder no longer! 

Self-professed fashionistas know that the traditional black and white zebra print reigns supreme on the style scene, alongside gold and black leopard print and black and brown snake print.

Although, if you want to make a serious style statement, why not try a slightly different take on the classic animal print combos?

Whether this is in the form of a different kind of animal print or colour palette, it’s fun to experiment with a multitude of looks for smart-casual occasions.

Be comfortable with what you’re wearing, for sure, but also don’t be afraid to mix things up every once in a while. It keeps fashion feeling fresh and exciting!

How to Wear Animal Print

In summary, some people shy away from animal print because it can look overpowering for casual occasions.

That said, when it’s styled right for smart-casual events, it’s impactful, sophisticated and breathtakingly beautiful.

Snake Print Snake Print

“New York” Tee – Matalan (similar here) / Trousers – I SAW IT FIRST (almost sold out, similar here) / Blazer – ZARA (similar here) / Bag – Michael Kors (similar here) / Sandals – Dune (similar here)

How do you wear animal print for a smart-casual occasion?

Katie Davies is the Yorkshire-based freelance writer who founded The Trendy Tourist. In the last three years, she has written for over 100 companies on a range of subjects, from fashion to marketing. When she’s not producing content, you can find her shopping, exploring a new place or sitting somewhere having a cup of builder’s tea.

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