There will always be room for a leopard coat in my winter wardrobe. Always!!
I adore a little bit of leopard. It doesn’t just lie with a coat either. I’m talking leopard graced bags, shoes, boots, scarf, hat, cardigan, belts. Yes….it’s safe to say I have a soft spot for leopard.
My passion for leopard
Where does this admiration stem from? I recall being a little girl and being allowed to stay up occasionally to watch Coronation Street with my Mum. As I sat there in my Nightie counting my lucky stars, sipping milk, ecstatic I could stay up a bit longer, I recall vivid memories of being completely mesmerized by Bet Lynch. Yellow hair sculpted to sit on top of her head as she puffed on her cigarette draped head to toe in leopard. Heavenly when you’re six years old. Come to think of it, still ridiculously heavenly when you add-on another 30 years or so! Maybe replace the milk with a nighttime Bailey’s. Oh Bet Lynch, where would we be without you?!
The vintage inspo
Leopard print has always been a firm favourite in the fashion world. I found these stunning images on Pinterest of true style queens of yesteryear.
Clockwise from the top left: Barbara Streisand, Catherine Deneuve, Brigitte Bardot, Jackie Kennedy, Elizabeth Taylor & Grace Kelly
The style set inspo
Look who wears it so well today. No surprises here that this crew also love a little leopard coat. No one perfects the leopard coat quite like Kate Moss, in my book. I adore these stunning images I found on Pinterest. She simply nails this look every time.
Clockwise from the top left: Alexa Chung, Emmanuel Alt, Ms Chung & the mighty Kate Moss
The capsule wardrobe contender……love a little leopard coat
I have had to develop an expert eye and sense of the leopard outfit combos. My rules for the leopard coat are that it has to be combined with simple staples in your wardrobe to prevent the coronation street overkill barmaid look. But nothing greater puts a smile on my face than a little leopard coat in the winter. A buying tip would be that if you are in between sizes, then go for the size down. This has worked for me and has taken me from a Star Wars Wookie wannabe to the Brigitte Bardot wannabe.
The leopard coat when worn needs to be ‘owned’. It’s no good wearing a leopard coat and walking round with a face full of thunder resembling your wet weekend campingl! The leopard coat needs to walk with a great big bloody smile and be ready and waiting for some adventures and fun.
I truly believe the reason why this leopard coat happily sits in the capsule wardrobe is down to how versatile it is. This baby dresses up and dresses down like a dream. I love the difference in the outfit combinations I drew up in this style sheet. From the Monday morning school run in a stripe, jeans and Stan Smiths, to the Saturday night out “going out, out” with a silk blouse, flares and a heel. How can your day or night be boring when you have a little Leopard draped over your shoulders!
Styling the leopard coat outfits
Where to buy
There are some great faux fur leopard coats out there. Be sure to check the vintage and charity shops for an authentic 60’s gem along with the high street winners this season that I found this year.
Search those vintage spots for the little leopard coat. Don’t disregard the charity shop or the vintage clothing shop. You would be earning brownie points for being a sustainable style diva! My vintage coat belonged to my friend Sarah. We do this thing called a ‘permanent loan’. We pass onto each other special items that we don’t need or indeed wear in our wardrobe for whatever reason but are too nice to see go to an anonymous home. Sarah found this fabulous vintage 60’s leopard coat in a vintage store in Toronto. I absolutely love it. I save it for ‘best’ occasions as cannot bear the thought of a junior snotty nose or sweet wrapper attaching itself to this baby! Thank you Sarah xx
How I wear mine
Here’s a little bit of leopard ready to go. A good old stripe (Zara) teamed with skinny jeans cuffed (Levis) and some Chelsea boots (Asos). This is my fail safe look ready to battle any blustery Autumn day school run or trip to the shops. This coat is a past season Marks and Spencer’s limited edition Cocoon coat. It’s such an easy coat to throw on over my shoulders and the leopard print is subdued enough not to scare the school bus driver.
I adore the soft luxe texture to this faux fur gem. This is the Aritzia Beckledge coat teamed with a black merino sweater (J.Crew Tipi) and some nicely knee ripped skinny jeans (Topshop Jamie). This look is ‘night out’ ready at a moments notice. Throw on some heel boots that you can still walk straight in after a glass or two of vino! I’m wearing my black ankle boots (Madewell Billie boots) and I’ve grabbed a little cross body bag (Kate Spade Bobi) I’m good to go and hopefully I won’t freeze my tits off when heading home after a good night out!
Nothing beats a touch of vintage glamour and craftsmanship. Here is my vintage baby that comes out at night and weekends where it is safe from kiddliwink handprints. I love the Mod vibe of this coat. It perfectly teams with my smile black merino sweater (J.Crew Tipi), my faux leather mini skirt (Zara) and my flat pony hair ankle boots (Gap) that scream “Mod” and ” take me to the city”. I’m fully convinced my clothes ‘sit and bitch’ together in my wardrobe during the day about how they are held captive and only get to go out and play in accordance to the ‘junior household members’ social diaries. It’s true!!
Finishing on words of wisdom from Jenna Lyons, who wisely stated that “As far as I’m concerned, Leopard is a neutral”! All hail Ms Lyons and the timeless contemporary classic little leopard coat xx
The November chills are creeping up on us now. Bring out your leopard !!