Call of the Wild- BARGAIN!

Stella McCartney Resort 2013

Like stripes (the subject of my last blog click here ) leopard prints and patterns are perennial all time favorites beloved by designers and customers alike, and with good reason. They never go out of style; treated like a neutral, they really go with everything. The late great Carrie Donovan once observed: “leopard is like camel; only better”; used as an accent, or small touch, they can make a big impact and are completely seasonless.

Jamin Puech leopard printed raffia bag

Quite frankly, while one normally associates leopard with colder weather, I almost prefer it in the summertime, when it is perhaps a bit more unexpected. Leopard printed scarves, shoes, and bags, regardless of the fabric, are perfect year round, but I especially love their juxtaposition with denim (any and all washes including bright white). And really, is there anything that looks better with a khaki trench or safari jacket? A few of my favorite leopard printed accessories as of late: Jamin Puech’s handsome, oversized leather trimmed leopard printed raffia bag, which was featured in Lucky Magazine, $485,, is available at 14 Prince St  New York, NY 10012, (212) 431-5200.

J.Crew Janey calf hair leopard flats

Figue’s ( “Art of the Ruler” (love the name) silk and Shabano wool scarf in a leopard print design with bold black border and tassels on the corners is $395 and beautifully sized at 40″ X 74″. J.Crew’s ( leopard printed calf hair chunky heeled Etta pump, and low heeled Janey flat (its small gold metal heel makes it more interesting and far more distinctive than a typical ballerina) are reduced (from $350 to $249, and $298 to $239 respectively).

leopard printed straw clutch

But who doesn’t love a real bargain? While I wouldn’t call myself a regular customer at H&M,, the popular chain known for its low prices and on trend merchandise, I will say that whenever I find myself near one of the stores (since they are conveniently located throughout Manhattan, that’s quite often), I stop in. And I almost never lead empty handed (even if it’s something small).

H&M bag in leopard printed thick weave cotton
 Coincidentally, my last 4 purchases have been something in leopard, with prices ranging from $12.95 – $79.95. The leopard printed straw clutch (6 3/4″ X 11″) has a flap and magnetic catch, $12.95; the large (51″ X 59″) printed leopard scarf with a black border is so versatile, it can be used a sarong, swimsuit cover-up, or a dress, depending on how you tie it; their roomy (13″ X 20″) leopard printed tote made of thick weave cotton has gold metal buckles and a detachable coin purse inside, $24.95; and their 100% cotton leopard printed collarless jacket may bear more than a passing resemblance to Stella McCartney’s resort 2013 version, but at $79.50, you can’t go wrong.

Marilyn Kirschner

I am a long time fashion editor with 40+ years of experience. As senior market of Harper's Bazaar for 21 years I met and worked with every major fashion designer in the world and covered all of the collections in Paris, London, Milan and New York. I was responsible for overall content, finding and pulling in the best clothes out there, and for formulating ideas and stories.

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