I have never met an animal print I didn't like. Designers are giving me a lot of choice this spring, at every price point. And while I love animal prints, leopard, cheetah, or loose interpretations, I am also liking how the cat prints are being shown with some other "no print" prints. That's because I also love camouflage prints, or camo prints for short, and the khaki colors that often go with them. The new mix and match can also extend to some tiny florals being thrown in for a fun and interesting juxtaposition. Come shopping with me, and let's see what's out there.
Of course there are classic takes with a twist. Miu Miu has an amazing pink cast coat with feather trim. How very Miuccia. Gucci has a few statement pieces this spring, including this form fitting animal print dress. And the soft leopard shirts from Celine are flying out of the store.
Miu Miu also offers animal print sweaters, tops and dresses. A few of the dresses are mixed with a small black and white star print that provides and interesting contrast. St Laurent know how to work and animal print. His animal print shirt with the tie neck works demurely under a black blazer, but the studded skirt adds just the right amount of tough chic edge. And to the right, there is another lovely soft cat print shirt, that would sits beautifully with the khaki jacket to the left.
Some designers, like Dolce & Gabbana have never met an animal print they didn't love, and they transform the patterns in many ways. The print with roses superimposed on top adds some nice bright color to the dresses and coats. Animal prints and red always work well together. The designers also like cat prints that are tonal, and worked with greys and blacks. Azzedine Alaia has always know when to add a insert the perfect touch of animal into his collection. This season the spots are rather more abstract, and look clean and cool when worked into a neutral palette.
Contemporary designers are also feeling the call of the spot. These black and white options are from 3 different designers. The animal top shown with some snake print pants has a retro vibe, especially with the pale yellow feather boa. A slip dress with lace trim makes a summer statement, and would look great under that St Laurent khaki jacket.
A spotted jumpsuit and a safari jacket are cool and casual pieces to update your wardrobe.
Things get even more fun as designers mix khaki, small florals, denim and khaki together. St Laurent and Zadig and Voltaire mix tender and tough to maximum advantage. Adding a pale blue or white denim into the mix is also a great way to work this trend. The small and tender floral prints look the prettiest. The smaller scale is not overwhelmed by the khaki.
Another great way to go is to add another type of no-print print into your mix. While khaki always looks great, it can look even better paired with an animal print. A camouflage print can work well on it's own, or work with khakis and denims. Neutral camo prints work with khakis, or with clean crisp black, whites, and brown, Take a look at the beach cover ups on the right. The camo prints on the left work with earthier tones, and the punch of red also works nicely.
Camo is also a lot of fun when it is done in bright colors. Miu Miu did a streetwise take this season. What's great about camo, like animal print, is that it is seasonless. You can wear these clothes all year round. Miu Miu also mixed in some animal with the camo, and added some stripes.
Off-White did a zanier color combo in the camo, and mixed it with floral prints. It makes a real statement. Comme Des Garcons takes the animal print in a lively direction using hot pink and turq. The little ruffles also pull the look away from a classic animal print. In this case it's wear what you dare.
Solid khaki looks great too. A cropped jacket can go over just about anything-from a black and white outfit to a full on animal ensemble. The center picture is looks from Sacai. The khakis are patched and matched with a sophisticated exposed seam technique, that is one of the brand's signatures. And even just plain khaki jackets are perfect this season.
So, the question is, do you stick with the classics like these from St Laurent and Alaia, or do you go for the wild mixes like a romper that actaullly has real animals roaring around the print? Either way, you should take some of these pets home.
NYC PRIVATE SHOPPING TOUR BLOG
Barbara Hodes is the owner of New York City Private Shopping Tour.