There’s something very fun and striking about animal print – it’s high contrast, it’s bold and impossible to ignore as these rooms show.
Animal print has been used to adorn homes since the 18th century. As Europeans returned from their ventures overseas, colonising Asia and Africa, they brought back the skins of the leopards, tigers and zebras they had found on their journeys. Generally expensive and considered rather exotic, having animal print was seen as a symbol of wealth and status.
But as technology and design improved, these exotic patterns were soon replicated and produced on more affordable fabrics, starting a trend that saw them become fashionable as both clothing items and in home decor. And the print is not just confined to fabrics, keep an eye out for wonderful bespoke cabinets using the unique patterns.
You can still buy the genuine articles today, often coming in the form of skins and hides to be used as rugs on the floor, or made into cushions. But if buying the real thing makes you feel a little uneasy, there are plenty of fabric choices in a range of animal prints that will replicate the look you’re after.
Whilst they undoubtedly add a touch of flamboyance and drama to a room, because they’re made up of brown, beige, and black, they’re relatively neutral and mix well with most other colours, hence easy to use in pretty much any room style, adding a touch of texture, impact and warmth.
Go on, be brave, bring out the animal in you and have a bit of fun. But just don’t go overboard, a little goes a long way when it comes to impact, too much and it’ll be overwhelming and cluttered.
1. Zebra print.
The unmistakable black and white stripes of zebra print is great to use in a multitude of room settings. It can be a subtle addition to a neutral toned ambiance, or add some definition and impact in a brightly coloured setting.
Source: La Dolce Vita
2. Leopard and cheetah print.
There are subtle differences between the two prints but not wanting to split hairs (pun intended), the strikingly spotted print works brilliantly in rooms to provide eye catching detail.
3. Cow hide.
Cow hides tend to be subtle affairs, with shades ranging from light fawn to deep dark browns and blacks. If you want something with a little more wow, opt for a mottled version. Incredibly hard wearing, they’re great to use on the floor to add some warmth and detail to a room.
Source: New darlings
4. Fur throws.
The ultimate in decadence, a fur (faux ideally) throw is a soft, sensuous addition to any room. Aesthetically they’re great at softening the look of any room, but they’re also a great way to cosy up and keep warm on a cold winter’s day.
Source: Apt 34
These are just a few ways you could consider incorporating some animal print into your own home. For more great ideas check out our Animal Print Pinterest board.
Main image source: The decorista