Zebra, cheetah, leopard and tiger prints seem to stampede into our wardrobes each season. This spring will be no different. Animal print will be surfacing in the collection of several of our favorite fashion designers next week at the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week.

Due to animal print’s eternal popularity among women and men alike, most fashion addicts realize that animal print is no longer a “trend,” as lace or bursts of floral have been in past seasons. Animal print has evolved into a fashion staple and a classic, which is now beginning to function as neutrals have.

Kate Dimmock, the fashion director of PeopleStyleWatch.com told the Houston Chronicle that designers are creating amazing pieces that function as a classic neutral would in a standard wardrobe. “Leopard-print pumps are a complete outfit-maker, and you can wear them with anything,” she told the interviewer.



However, the fashion faux-pas that gracing our college campuses is the overdosing on animal prints in our wardrobes. You should have the option of turning a wardrobe into wild kingdom, but with the hats, headbands, earrings, scarves, hoodies, leggings, and stilettos, students are adding leopard bags with leopard shoes to equal a fashion disaster.

Dimmock advises against two prints in the same outfit. “I wouldn’t ever pair a leopard shoe with a leopard bag,” she told the Houston Chronicle.

When wearing animal prints, remember that a little bit goes much further.

Stephanie Solomon, Bloomingdale’s fashion director, advises against wearing head-to-toe animal print. It should be worn in smaller doses. “Never, ever do a head-to-toe look in animal prints,” she told the Chicago Tribune. “A touch of these designs goes a long way.”

Animal print brings attention to the area where it is being worn, so it is best to wear zebra or cheetah sparingly when an outfit needs it.

Jennifer Uglialoro, a spokeswoman for H&M tells the Chicago Tribune, “They definitely don’t camouflage. If you want to draw attention away from your bottom half, maybe you don’t want to wear leopard pants.”

If there is a need to wear a large dose of animal print, be sure to tone the outfit down with neutrals. A leopard print dress should be paired with a neutral-colored blazer and stilettos that complement rather than distract from the animal print.

Most of all, the perfect complement to an animal print ensemble is confidence.

“When you wear any animal-print piece, you’re telling the world — in a good way — that you’re a little wild,” Solomon told the Chicago Tribune.

Have fun and get wild!