Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Style Question Wednesday: Are you a good leopard or a bad leopard?

Do you know why it's easy for a hunter to find a leopard? Because a leopard is always spotted.
A joke my father used to tell me all the time when I was a child...

Folks, I love the Plains of Africa - I am enthralled by the Lion, the Zebra, the Cheetah, the Elephant, the Leopard. 

If given free reign, my house would be decorated in such a way that when I asked, I would say, in clipped danish accent "I had a farm in Africa".





(By the way, the second picture has nothing to do with decor.  I just swoon to think of having my hair washed by a man, especially Robert Redford....)

But I have always shied away from animal prints until very recently.

The reasons are many:

1) I am always afraid I will go over the top and perhaps end up at work looking like this:



2) I am always unsure as to how many animal prints can be worn on the body simultaneously:

nicki minaj grammy 2011 dress

I mean really - was Nicky suffering the same confusion as I?

3) Can animal prints be combined with each other - i.e. can the cheetah lie down with the zebra?


4) How can you be sure you are channelling Anne Margrock, not Edith Prickley?




I got to thinking about all of this this morning when I wore the following outfit to work:



Leopard print Tippi, burgundy pencil skirt in cotton - new burgundy boots (I will take better pictures of these as they are really comfortable!)

So dear friends - weigh in:  Could I have added more animal print?  How do YOU know when enough is enough?  Do you like animal prints?

And remember, the key for me is to always end up looking more like this:


Think Grace Kelly, not Grace Jones!

As always - I love your advice - you make getting up on wednesdays such fun!







34 comments:

  1. This will divide the masses!
    Not for me, I lived through the 80's and lived in leopard print, every male friend begged me to stop wearing it, they all loathed it, now it makes me cringe when I wear it, I had a beautiful chiffon dress in leopard but had to give it away, I just can't live with the connotations it has over here which is busty barmaids and older tarty women with dyed black or blonde hair and frosted pink lipstick!
    All that said, my mum had a jumper like yours when she was young and wore it with a camal skirt and pearls and I will always remember that lovely outfit of hers - it's all the 80's fault I guess.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you are right - this post will definitely lead to some interesting style discussions. I am typically very afraid of leopard print, and even purchasing this for only $35 CDN made me nervous, despite the fact that it is lovely merino wool... But I see many wearing it so well! I love all of the good discussion!

      Delete
  2. Oh well my big leap into leopard has been a single skinny belt that I haven't figured out how to wear yet, so I won't be much help. I can't think of what additional animal print I would put with that outfit. To me it looks nice as it is.

    I always wondered, can tortoise be worn with leopard? I'm thinking not, but correct me please if I'm wrong.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ob I hope someone chimes in on that one!

      Delete
  3. I never owned anything animal(except the jcrew savannah belt),but this year i got the leopard perfect shirt and a leopard scarf and i love it.
    I would love to try animal print mixed with stripes.

    You outfit looks very nice!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Ina - maybe the leopard prints are getting more tasteful and that's why we like them?

      Delete
  4. I am for the leopard! I have a silk leopard print dress, but it's Kate Spade so it's very demure. Actually I just picked it up at the tailor yesterday, I had to have the torso taken in. I also have that leopard print bag, leopard belts, leopard iphone case, I think of it as a neutral. I never wore it when I was younger so I don't have bad connotations like Tabs does. I think one piece at a time is good, but actually I layer my leopard belt on top of my leopard dress so what am I talking about!
    I love your outfit, the leopard looks great with that color.
    Hilarious post, I love the images!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Dani - I re-loaded the out of Africa pictures - for some reason they are not coming through!

      I always think that given you are my Grace Kelly, leopard must be pretty good! I am actively looking for a leopard print bag after seeing yours!

      Delete
  5. I think you have the animal look just fine here-- I would not advocate for more.

    I have only small accessories in leopard-- iphone cover,an old JC umbrella,socks-- all within my comfort zone. But I like the look on others!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It does take some chutzpah! I think I started out with just sock!

      Delete
  6. SPOT ON! WMM, coincidentally, you and the Vancouver Sun are on very same page today. Just scanned this before popping in to get the scoop from your style advisory board:
    http://www.vancouversun.com/life/Animal+print+wear/7297895/story.html
    I was trapped and tickled by your post today including the unexpected and lovely pairing of leopard with burgundy instead of the more common black or camel, Isak Dinesen and, of course, the Anne Margrock. Sadly RR is not showing up on my screen, wee bit miscast here,but my enduring American heart throb *thump thump* since being allowed to stay up late and watch appearances like Way We Were, President's Men and Brubaker (only Hollywood star the 'rents could agree on maybe?) Leopard is my preferred of the recent spate of animal prints but in small doses and on the top half only (no skirts or pants somehow too 1980s' Madonna video for me.) Current menagerie > belt, an old pair of gloriously all leather/ calf hair JC ballets, scarf and that Tippi for a song, which I tuck away between a tee layer and a brown jacket since for me it makes a black & brown outfit mix work.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Getfresh! reloaded RR for you! The Way We Were makes me swoon as well! And as the Sundance Kid - sigh....

      Too funny about me with the Vancouver Sun - I will have to go take a look! I think I will pair the tippi with black next!

      Delete
    2. Make my day with the top two pics WMM. And I forgot about the light coloured but leopard print Valentinas in my closet. Mental block? Like you, I am torn (hobbled?) by fit vs. look of this pair. But I like the look and heel height, so may see if there's something cobbler/ heel grips can do.

      Delete
  7. What a wonderful post. I had forgotten about Ann Margrock, and I have tried to forget about Nicki ion that getup. You definitely have achieved your goal. You look very polished and put together!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Generally, one animal print is enough, but if say, your shoes are leopard and you want to wear a belt or headband that is a different animal print in the same color family, go for it. But I wouldn't wear zebra with leopard. Just, no.

    I think Dani's leopard belt with dress is perfectly fine. I do that too!

    Also, I love your above outfit. Just added a new want to my list, burgundy boots!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I should add that I do love animal prints. J.Crew's spotted cat they did a few years back is one of the best. I am wearing the shoes today! I have numerous animal print belts and headbands, and shoes. I also have the snow leopard silk dress from J.Crew 2008 and a silk chiffon leopard dress from Talbots, neither of which I wear, ever. I guess I tend to stick mostly to accessories!

      Delete
    2. Thanks JCrew JD! I LOVE those burgundy boots! I think I will take some close-ups and send a link - they are even better close-up!

      Well - I know not to mix my prints! It is fun to get people's perspectives! I never wore leopard before the last year, so I have no residual style hangover like Tabitha either!

      Delete
  9. I am also just venturing into leopard. I am traveling for work, and packed the very leopard Tippi you are wearing :). I plan to wear it tomorrow with.camel wool cafe capris, but have been debating whether to wear my leopard Valentinas with the outfit--too much? Would live your opinion!

    Personally, I love the outfit in your post as-is--enough to likely copy it in the future;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Wendy!

      You know - I would wear them - I think they would look lovely with that and that pattern is very subtle compared with the Tippi!

      Thanks for the compliment!

      Delete
  10. I'm in the leopard "yes" camp! and I think that you nailed it with your outfit! Perfect!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Andra - I LOVE all of your leopard outfits and you have so been inspiring me to be braver!!!!

      Delete
  11. I also did not own any leopard until recently but now I have the shoes, a belt, clutch and pencil skirt. Accessories are easy to wear but when I wear the skirt I try to keep the rest away from sexy or anything attention getting. Oh, and I have a watercolor leopard dress but it is purple gray so I am not sure if it counts. I think your outfit is great and classic. I generally stick to one leopard item, especially if it is bigger surface

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes - is so critical to look chic, not sexy when wearing animal print!

      Delete
  12. Hi WMM, I think your outfit looks very stylish. I have never worn any animal prints, couldn't look at them without thinking of a certain barmaid in a certain northern pub (Bet Lynch in Coronation Street). However, after reading style blogs for several years I can see the appeal, but only one piece at a time. Still don't have any though!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh Patricia - I forgot about Bet!

      I hear you!
      It has taken me a long time to be brave!

      Delete
  13. I think one animal print at a time is plenty. You look great!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Rose! I put you in the "careful" category! :-) I think I should send this blog post to poor old Nicky!

      Delete
  14. Great combination, say I. The one piece of leopard is perfect, and the burgundy is classic but fresh, especially the boots, wonderful! And if Robert Redford wanted to wash my hair, I would wear just about anything!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh n.b. I am so with you! He is just loverly...

      Delete
  15. Sorry to be chiming in so late again WMM. I feel as if I am constantly behind on everything right now, and that includes blog reading/commenting.

    As for the topic of the post...when I was younger I didn't want to have anything to do with animal prints. My mother always loved them, but they just weren't my 'thing'. However, now I cannot get enough of leopard! I own bags, shoes, belts, and even a J.Crew perfect shirt in leopard. If I wear the shirt, I do not wear any other leopard print items, but I will wear a bag and shoes together, or shoes and belt.

    I really like your outfit with the Leopard Tippi. In this case, just one leopard item is enough, and looks very lovely on you! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks FFM! I like the idea of mixing the accessories! Is always so interesting to figure out how best to wear things and what is over the top!

      Delete
  16. I love leopard!!! I first fell in love with leopard when I first went back into the working world - about 12 years ago. I was working in a decorating store that sold custom made window treatments, etc. It was a fun job, and I worked with a woman who was older than I, but a very cool dresser - and she had great leopard shoes. I have buying everything leopard ever since!
    ...and I LOVED the Flinstone episodes with Ann Margarock! Also love your outfit with the leopard tippi with burgandy colored skirt, and those boots are GREAT!!! Love them!
    And yes, I am SOOOOoo far behind in both blogging and reading - but catching up! Have a great weekend.

    ReplyDelete

Kindness is a virtue...