As more and more brands opt out of working with fur – Prada, Burberry, Gucci, and Chanel, to name a few – the concept of wearing an actual animal pelt as luxury clothing appears to be on its last legs. Great news for minks, but potentially bad news for the estimated one million people who work in fur production.
Perhaps as a reaction to this, or perhaps as a way of accepting our more primitive, primal urges to wear the skins of exotic animals, there has been an explosion in brands looking to express themselves via the use of other animal prints. These new designs are elevating stripes, spots, and scales beyond the usual outerwear staples, and into loafers, wallets, scarves, and shoulder bags.
Amid a fashion landscape that has been leaning into technical fabrics, and futuristic, iridescent treatments, there’s something to be said for a piece of clothing that references the greatest designer of all: mother nature herself.
Click down below to shop our list of the hottest animal prints to buy right now below.
In terms of nature-inspired prints, surely the biggest player in the fashion sphere last year was snakeskin – first spotted on the 1017 ALYX 9SM runway back in 2018. The print is seen below on a pair of Off-White™ loafers, a GCDS bowling shirt, and a D’heygere belt to help add the cherry on top of almost any outfit.
For one reason or another, zebra print pieces always seem to take a backseat to pioneering patterns like leopard, and tiger. Despite its distinct lack of ferocity, the zebra print is a perfect option for adding texture and depth to your outfits, with a color palette that goes with just about anything. Below we have selected a few summer-ready shirts from Han Kjobenhavn, sacai, and Toga Virilis.
Tiger stripes have been on our radar thanks to one exceptionally decadent coat from Celine’s FW19 collection, but there are many brands doing interesting things with the regal pattern. Notably Saint Laurent, who rendered the print in a red silk, short-sleeved shirt with a camp collar, and NEIGHBORHOOD, who adopted the tiger’s orange and black stripes into a chic neckerchief.
Leopards – arguably the most beautiful member of the big cat family – sport a print so illustrious, it will probably never go out of style. However, our favorite leopard print pieces of the season come from contemporary labels Perks and Mini, and Wacko Maria x Converse, both presenting a predictably off-kilter approach to the tried-and-true pattern.
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- Curated by: Rhianna Matthews