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3 Common Animal Prints Used in Fashion & Their Symbolism February 28, 2019

Garment District, Manhattan
3 Common Animal Prints Used in Fashion & Their Symbolism, Manhattan, New York

Animal print has been used in fashion for centuries. Wearing real fur was once thought of as a status symbol of wealth and luxury. Today, the prints are found on textiles used to create anything from spandex leggings to cotton shirts. Below is the symbolism behind some of the most commonly worn animal prints. 

What Are the Meanings Behind Popular Animal Prints?

1. Leopard

The history of leopard print is a varied one. It was part of high-fashion during the 1960s before falling out of style. However, the print has gained popularity once more in recent years, most likely due to the rise of Lycra® and spandex leggings. Today, people associate it with its early evocative and untamed connotations. Women who wear this material are boldly stating that they cannot be tamed.

2. Snake

spandexUsing actual snakeskin is not as common in fashion anymore, but that hasn’t stopped designers from incorporating the animal print into their designs. It’s still regularly seen on the runway on top of denim, spandex, faux fur, leather, and even organza materials. With its various cultural interpretations, it’s no wonder the print fascinates so many people and is used to create numerous types of garments. To one person, it might mean life force, but to someone else, it could signify knowledge and cunningness. The shedding of the skin also represents transformation and renewal to some. So, maybe wearing snake print indicates that you can’t be pinned down to any particular label — you are ever changing.

3. Butterfly

Like leopard print, butterfly patterns were common in the 1950s and 60s. The imagery of transformation was one many women of the time could relate to, as more and more were moving away from being housewives to working women. Today, designers are reviving the print on fabrics and garments that flow and breathe air. These pieces symbolize freedom and naturalness, as well as beauty and feeling at peace with oneself. 


When you need animal-print spandex materials for a look you’re working on, look no further than Spandex House. Based in the Garment District in Manhattan, NY, they are one of the largest suppliers of spandex fabric in the world and are dedicated to providing the highest quality materials at the lowest prices. Visit their website to view their full product line or to request a sample. If you have any questions, call (212) 354-6711 to speak with a customer representative. 

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