How To Wear A Leopard Print Jacket Like A Fashion Editor

Once in a while I’ll flirt with zebra stripes or dabble in Dalmatian spots, but if there is one animal print that has a secure place in my heart, it’s leopard. And while I consider the pattern practically a neutral, I know others have cringe-inducing leopard memories—Scary Spice anyone?—that keep them from embracing the look. But I promise the big-cat print can be downright chic when worn the right way. 

Photo:

Photo credit: Pepe Leon

Look 1: For Day

You may think leopard lends itself more to eveningwear, but the print can work just as well for day. Simply pair it with casual staples, like your favorite pair of jeans and a comfortable pair of flats.

What I Wore: Raquel Allegra Linen Long Jacket ($738) in Leopard; Roots Cropped Sorority Jacket ($260); Uniqlo Linen Blend T-Shirt ($13, 811.486.4756) in Orange; Citizens of Humanity Skyler Low Rise Crop Jeans ($258) in Legacy; Nasty Gal Serpentine Ponyhair Bucket Bag ($68); Catbird Jewelry Dollhouse Locket ($168) in Gold; Club Monaco Mino Woven Leather Belt ($70) in Dark Brown; Massimo Dutti Loafers ($155, 212.371.2555) in Burgundy; Catbird Jewelry Dark & Stormy Star Ring ($122); Bittersweets NY Teensy Evil Eye Ring ($350); Sarah Chloe Lily Solid Heart Necklace ($119); Prada Teddy Aviator-Style Sunglasses ($353).

Photo:

Photo credit: Pepe Leon

Sure, anyone can mix a couple patterns, but pulling off multiple animal prints takes a bit of skill. The combination works here because the leopard coat is muted and the bucket bag’s snake print is slightly abstract.

Photo:

Photo credit: Pepe Leon

A layering trifecta (I did a lightweight coat + baseball jacket + t-shirt) adds depth to the casual look. If you don’t have a baseball jacket, try a cardigan or motorcycle vest for the middle layer.

Photo:

Photo credit: Pepe Leon

I never leave the house without a set of delicate rings—they complete every outfit. 

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Photo credit: Pepe Leon

The unique bridge on these aviators keep the classic style feeling fresh.

Photo:

Photo credit: Pepe Leon

Look 2: For Night

Your most basic LBD will look perfectly lovely under a leopard jacket, but choosing a cocktail dress with extra embellishments is a surefire way to make sure all eyes are on you. 

What I Wore: Raquel Allegra Linen Long Jacket ($738) in Leopard; Parker Allegra Dress ($396); Zara High Heel Ankle Boot Sandals ($80); The 2Bandits North Star Ring ($98) in Antique Silver & Black Onyx; Bing Bang Moon Chandelier Earrings ($138) in Silver; Kotur clutch (similar style available here).

Photo:

Photo credit: Pepe Leon

You can always count on Zara for a solid stiletto. I love the unexpected mix of blue and navy on this strappy version.

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Photo credit: Pepe Leon

A feather-embellished hem is an unexpected touch that makes all the difference.

Photo:

Photo credit: Pepe Leon

When it comes to earrings for a night out, follow the mantra: go big or go home.

BB Dakota Hazel Coat ($90)

Diane Von Furstenberg Mahala Coat ($299)

French Connection Teddy Leopard Coat ($280)