I’m gonna get this out of my way right at the start: I am not normally a leopard print fan. I once heard someone say that (paraphrased) it is a print that is abundantly used in the fashion industry by the very cheap and the very expensive, and I think that perfectly encapsulates how I feel about the print on the whole. When done well, it’s sexy and chic and luxurious. Done badly, it looks…well, cheap. And while there’s nothing wrong with building a wardrobe in a thrifty manner, I think we all tend to hope our £3 bargain we were excited to snag doesn’t actually scream ‘THIS COST £3!’ We just want to be able to say that in an enthusiastic half-bragging fashion when someone cooes over how gorgeous it is. There’s a difference.
So with leopard print, I feel it’s a fine line. For that reason, I’ve stayed clear of it in the past, overlooking it in favour of prints or patterns that are less difficult to ‘get right.’ In recent months, however, I’ve found myself drawn to the print. Perhaps being in the pinup community means I’ve simply been exposed to a lot of brands who have got it right by leaning on their vintage inspirations to nail the sexy, stylish essence of the print. No matter the reason, lately I’ve been searching around for a leopard print top I can pair with a black pencil skirt and a sassy attitude to feel as slinky as the jungle cat it mimics. Thanks to Miss Fortune, I’ve found that top: the Leopard Polly Blouse.
I was recently very excited to attend the launch party for Atypical-girl.com, a brand new clothing website stocking a selection of carefully curated original vintage and reproduction clothing, aimed at retro loving dolls and girls with a fashion edge. Atypical Girl is different to your typical pinup clothing site because the focus is on finding your own style, whether that be with a truly authentic eye to a classic era or with a modern take on vintage looks you love. So I was very curious to attend to the launch party and see just what Atypical Girl would be about–and of course, it was no surprise that it was a great event held in a funky private member’s club, featuring a variety of excellent retro music, vintage canapes and even some kick-ass Go Go dancers. I was thrilled to meet Atypical Girl’s founder Simone Hadfield, @missturnstiles to you Instagrammers, who, yes, is as gorgeous, chic and lovely in person as you’d expect. I love me some Girl Bosses, and Simone is definitely one of them. Pictures of the event can be found on the Atypical Girl’s Facebook page, which you should go like. Bonus points to the first reader to count up the number of times I’m caught pulling a stupid face while actively engaging in conversation (It is, I’m ashamed to say, many times.)
After attending such a wonderful event it was obvious I needed something from the Atypical Girl range, and at Simone’s own suggestion I couldn’t help but agree that the Joan dress had to join my wardrobe. This green wiggle dress is a true classic, made of knitted twillit’s comfortable as well as flattering, and I love the waist detail of pleats settled beneath a fabric kind-of-belt that crosses at the front then fastens behind with a single button. The dress is truly timeless, and considering how killer it would look on Christina Hendricks’ character in Mad Men it is no surprise at all why this hot little item is named the Joan. All you redheaded ladies definitely need to pick up this colourway as it will be true magic with your ginger hair, but it’s such a universally complimentary colour that I can’t think of a single hair colour or skin tone that wouldn’t wow in this dress.