Animal print can be difficult to style. The bold patterns tend to scare people off, but rather than running for the hills (something I’d do if I saw an actual lion), we should be embracing animal prints. People stay away from animal print because it is patterned and therefore, risky. But that is why animal prints should be part of clothes and jewelry collections!
Animal prints are often viewed as ‘trashy’ and ‘tacky’ - words you don’t want to hear when people talk about your outfits. But in my opinion, animal prints are fun, textured, edgy and a way to express yourself and try new things. It is the same with every fashion trend - it all depends how you style it.
Here are the best animal prints to wear in jewelry and how to style it.
The snake is the most loved symbol in antique and vintage jewelry. Nowadays being called a snake means you’ve done something shady or have hurt someone. But if you take a look at the history of snake jewelry, the snake was used to represent wisdom, commitment and loyalty. They were a popular symbol for engagement rings, most notably Queen Victoria’s engagement ring which was in the shape of a serpent, featuring emeralds, sapphires and rubies. Dispel the myth that snakes are evil and instead, adorn yourself with snake prints. Snake jewelry explores the signature snake shape, which when wrapped around the finger, neck or wrist gives a sense of fluidity and movement. The intricate scales of the snake can be made out of any material for a slithering cool look, but gold or gemstones are a personal favorite. Choose gold for some warmth or gemstones to give the scales movement and texture.
Alligator prints are perfect if you’re looking for something dark and bold. Much like the snake, it has rough jagged scales and a curved body. Alligator jewelry shows off the shape and color of the animal, while creating a stylish textured piece. The eyes of an alligator are typically a bright yellow, red or green. Designers use colorful gemstones like rubies or emeralds in their pieces to create a spooky and mysterious look. Alligators are darkly colored creatures, so pair an alligator bracelet with similar dark jewelry and fabrics.
Leopard print is one of the most popular prints. It is a versatile print, with its beautiful yellow, brown and black colors and works perfectly with clothes and jewelry. Whether you decide to go big or small, leopard is a great way to be over-the-top with prints or to be more subtle. Leopard print is also the most popular print to mismatch with others. Of course, leopard can be worn with a plain outfit to keep the print as the statement piece, but why not go all out? Mix and match your leopard print, with tartan, stripes and florals. Leopard print earrings really make a statement and add an extra pop of color and pattern to any look.
Tigers are powerful and colorful creatures and their print is used in jewelry constantly. The orange, white and black colors work beautifully together and are imitated well by jewelry materials, like gold, silver and oxidized metals. The stripes on the tiger are a great aspect in jewelry, adding more dimension and definition to a look. We also cant forget the tiger eye gemstone. Tiger eye is a chatoyant gemstone, with a gold, red-brown color, silky texture, resembling the eye and color of the tiger. It is said to ward off evil, aid harmony and balance and give clarity to its wearer. Tiger eye is used in many rings, bracelets and other jewelry. Wear with bright colors to really set off the color of the tiger and make your own combination, by pairing tiger eye jewelry with other gemstones.
A bird of prey, the eagle is a powerful creature and a symbol for freedom. Birds are regularly seen in jewelry, but eagles are the best bird if you’re looking for something dark and edgy. The dark color of the eagle is best shown off in dark metals like silver, platinum, steel and oxidized metals. By incorporating the feather detailing, it gives jewelry more shape and intricate layers that really show off the magic and flight of the bird. Most eagles are solitary but in jewelry, more is more and bigger is better. Decide on a pair of eagles, like cufflinks or earrings for extra power and strength.