Item of the Week: Leopard Print Shoes

Oct 3, 2016

itemoftheweek2

Vince Camuto Salest Genuine Pumps ($110)

The best thing about fall is not the leaves, the comfort food, or the pumpkin spice lattes (gross).  The best thing about fall is the clothes.  And my favorite fall item, bar none, is leopard print shoes.

I can wear them with any outfit, any color, and to almost any occasion.  They breathe life into an otherwise boring outfit and say, “Hey, this may just be a t-shirt and jeans, but it’s a t-shirt and jeans with personality!”

Animal print accessories from shoes to scarves to bags can fall into the tacky or gaudy category if you don’t choose them wisely. So here are my five tips for buying and wearing animal prints:

1. Leopard stands alone.  If the piece is animal print, it cannot also be sequined, embroidered, or otherwise embellished.  Animal prints have enough personality on their own; if you add something else to them, you quickly fall into Real Housewives territory.

2. Don’t mix animal prints.  Giraffe, Zebra, and Leopard may live at the zoo together, but they should only be worn separately.  Otherwise it’s going to look like bingo night at a retirement community in Boca.

3. The color mix in the print matters.  When buying leopard print pieces, you want the shades of beige, yellow, brown or black to look a bit muted.  If the print mixes too many colors, it can look cheap.

4. Animal print is usually best as accent.  Occasionally, you find a wonderful animal print clothing item (like this Boden dress), but it’s a rarity.  When in doubt, stick to shoes and scarves.

5. If leopard is too much for you, search for a subtler animal print like dalmatian, tortoise, or snakeskin.

Need more leopard and animal print picks?  Check out the slider for shoes in a range of styles and prices.

 

Item of the Week

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  1. Caitlin says:

    Love this new feature! Any recommendations for under $100 tortoise flats? They’re my white whale!

  2. JEM says:

    I have a pair of Steve Madden Vegass flats in leopard that are by far the most versatile shoe I’ve ever owned – unfortunately, after about 5 years they are a) barely holding together and b) not currently made by SM. I’ll certainly be trying on some of the ones featured here to see if I can find a suitable replacement.
    That said… I can’t comment without mentioning that I’m surprised/disappointed by the choice to include an Ivanka Trump pair. I realize that she is not her father, but I’m not interested in contributing money to any member of that family or their companies at the moment.

  3. RR says:

    Ugh. I just cannot with the Ivanka Trump shoes anymore.

    • JEM says:

      I also made a comment earlier regarding my surprise/disappointment at the inclusion of the Ivanka shoes, and my unwillingness to contribute money to any member of the Trump family or their companies at the present moment. My comment has disappeared, which I’m hoping was not an intentional removal as I’ve always respected Belle’s ability to respond to respectful criticism and not just delete comments like so many other blogs.

      • Jenn S. says:

        I’m not terribly keen on contributing to the greater Trump family’s finances (and therefore won’t be buying them), I do like the styling of many of Ivanka’s shoes. This is, after all, a style blog – not a, “go buy exactly what I tell you,” blog. It isn’t like Belle is sponsored.

        • stephanie says:

          I loathe Trump more than I can express. But damn if Ivanka’s company doesn’t make a decent low priced pump, and good dress flats. They’re one of the few mid-ranged brands that don’t fall off my heels when I’m wearing my normal size (as in, not sizing down and squishing my toes). Trying not to buy anymore though.

    • R says:

      I was under the impression that the items in the widget (where the Ivanka Trump shoe shows up) are auto-generated based on search criteria, not chosen by Belle herself. I may be wrong though.

  4. Emily says:

    I’ve been on the hunt for the right pair of leopard flats for a while, so I was looking forward to checking out the options here. But the slider doesn’t appear to work on mobile? Tried Feedly and Safari. I’ll try to bookmark for desktop and have a look later, but my two cents on the slider is I’d prefer a plain list or a grid if possible. They are gaining in popularity but are buggy!

  5. kk says:

    I like the tips, but I wish the editorializing wasnt so snarky on the blog lately. Whether or not you like pumpkin spice lattes, real housewives, and boca bingo- it’s mean-spirited and takes away from the cap hill style blog brand of powerful, confident, well dressed women.

  6. AP says:

    Keep the snark! It makes the blog more fun

  7. SN says:

    Shoes are nice but I have an entire cheetah print sari! A Satya Paul in silk georgette. My favorite sari designer. I love wearing it. Neutral blouse, shoes, and clutch, but it works well and is absolutely gorgeous! Not overdone at all.

    • Belle says:

      Bold.

      • SN says:

        Satya Paul designs very cutting edge saris. India has a very lively fashion scene, ramp shows etc. you should look at their website if you want to see what can be done with a sari. I wear them for evening events but western clothes the rest of the time. My accessories have to do double duty for two different esthetics. The Indian version of the LBD is a chiffon sari, pearls and medium heel sling backs. Always elegant.

  8. MS says:

    100% in support of the snark. I don’t think it’s new and I love it. Rather you say it on the blog than someone whisper it at work… I hardly find PSLs or Real Housewives to be upsetting topics to tease.

  9. Caitlin says:

    Agree with the others on loving the snark- it adds a touch of personality that makes it more interesting to read and doesn’t seem mean-spirited at all. You didn’t go find a woman wearing leopard and zebra, point to her, and say “wow she looks awful!” You were simply explaining common pitfalls that most women try to avoid.

  10. Crystal says:

    I think some of your long-time readers might be starting a #savethesnark campaign, Belle. I’m in. 🙂

    • Anna says:

      The blog used to have fashion faux pas posts consisting of photos of people out and about in non-Belle-approved attire. The snark has been toned down considerably over the years. A dig at PSLs and Real Housewives is hardly offensive, in fact, I think how they’re presented here they aren’t even really snarky.

  11. Tech Writer says:

    I was coming here to say that “Otherwise it’s going to look like bingo night at a retirement community in Boca” may be my favorite line in more than half a decade of reading this blog.

    Thanks for the laugh and the advice. FWIW, keep up the snark. I enjoy a bit of an edge to a good soul.

  12. Rose says:

    Cole Haan has the best leopard print. You can find them on sale on 6pm.com and Amazon. I bought a pair of flats 1.5 years ago and wore them to work every other day. I had tried the shoes with this print from different brands like Jcrew, Nordstrom and Cole Haan won both in design & quality.

  13. Amy says:

    To everyone concerned about buying Ivanka shoes- I feel the same way. I won’t touch anything with the Trump name on it with a 12 foot pole. I agree the designs, however, are cute and tempting. Luckily, her clothes are designed and manufactured on contract with the co. that does a lot of the Calvin Klein stuff under a license agreement. I’ve found that if I like an Ivanka item, I can usually find a remarkably similar one made by the CK brand.

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