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Sunday, 12 August 2018

Fashion experts reveal the FIVE style details that make ANY leopard print garment look luxe - and the tell-tale signs of poor quality to avoid

  • Designers behind Rixo London shared their tips on shopping for leopard print
  • Revealed the style details that separate expensive prints from cheap replicas 
  • Colour, cut and fabric should all be taken into account when looking to invest 
Leopard print is one of this summer's biggest trends but with dozens of pieces dangling on shop rails, it can be difficult to know which ones are worth the money. 
Fortunately the style experts at Who What Wear teamed up with the designers behind Rixo London - one of this year's biggest breakout brands - to share their tips on the giveaway signs that make a leopard print look cheap.
The fashionistas focus on the colour, pattern and cut of a garment, providing shoppers with a fail-safe guide on how to navigate the jungle of leopard print. 
So whether you are thinking about updating your wardrobe or splashing out ahead of a summer holiday, scroll down to find out exactly what you should avoid if you want to buy a piece that's worth the money.
1. Splash out on silk
Luxe material: The £295 Katie Camel Spot Leopard Button Down Midi Dress by Rixo London is 100 per cent silk. A quality fabric is the easiest way to elevate any leopard print garment
Luxe material: The £295 Katie Camel Spot Leopard Button Down Midi Dress by Rixo London is 100 per cent silk. A quality fabric is the easiest way to elevate any leopard print garment
Orlagh McCloskey and Henrietta Rix, co-founders and creative directors of Rixo London, said: 'When investing in leopard-print pieces, the top priority should be material composition—the type of fabric the print is placed on is key.'
The pair's creations are highly coveted by those in the know - including several in an effortlessly cool leopard print. 
Fabrics to look out for include silks and blends that have a relatively matt finish. However pure cotton is a more affordable option that can still have a high-end look.
2. Choose a medium-sized spot
Down the middle: Medium-sized spots give a more high-end look than tiny or supersized versions. Pictured, Ganni's £290 Calla pussy-bow leopard-print silk-blend satin blouse
Down the middle: Medium-sized spots give a more high-end look than tiny or supersized versions. Pictured, Ganni's £290 Calla pussy-bow leopard-print silk-blend satin blouse
Whereas once highly-detailed leopard spots were the sign of an expensive garment, designers now favour simplistic prints or those with a cartoonish edge. 
The size of the spots are also key, with medium-sized ones winning out over tiny versions or oversized spots.  
3. Go super bright
High end on the high street: Topshop took inspiration from designers including Versace for this £32 Red Leopard Denim Skirt and co-ordinating £45 denim jacket
High end on the high street: Topshop took inspiration from designers including Versace for this £32 Red Leopard Denim Skirt and co-ordinating £45 denim jacket
Leopard is coming in all sorts of colours this season but ultra bright or classic neutrals are your best bet if you want the luxe look. 
Designers like Versace led the charge with vibrant, in-your-face takes on the print, sending models down the catwalk in acid yellow and red. 
The trend has been snapped up by high street giants like Topshop, which has released a number of leopard print pieces in bold shades.  
4. Make the cut current
Nineties hero: This Michelle Mason silk-chiffon midi dress is effortlessly trendy
Nineties hero: This Michelle Mason silk-chiffon midi dress is effortlessly trendy
One fail-safe way to make any print look expensive is to choose it in a cut or style that is definitely on-trend. 
Slip dresses, wrap blouses and tea dresses are all having a moment, so why not choose one of those styles to bring your leopard print up-to-date?  
5. Avoid generic prints
Custom: Designers like Victoria Beckham work to create their own leopard prints 
Custom: Designers like Victoria Beckham work to create their own leopard prints 
'A more elevated animal print will have been worked into by a print designer and most likely have some sort of twist to make it feel more interesting and less generic,' the article notes. 
If brands use a generic print that is already in production, it is likely that it has also been used by other labels or high-street chains, making it look less exclusive. 
Individual elements, including the design of the print and the colourway, can be adapted to make it an original. 

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