The Tribal Revival: The Wildest Trend For Summer 2012

The catwalks were hit by jungle-fever at the Spring/Summer 2012 fashion weeks and the safari look is set to top the trends this summer. From flowing dresses to dainty clutches, African-inspired clothes and accessories in desert hues are the ultimate in safari luxe. Let's take a look at some of the coolest catwalk looks and explore how you can work the look into your own wardrobe.



Into The Wild

As the trend slowly filters into high-street translations, more and more daring looks are being uploaded to online look books and fashion blogs. From leopard print fabrics to snakeskin accessories. Printed jeans have become an increasingly popular choice, with leopard print skinnies proving an easy-to-wear fashion favourite. Wear with a black body and a pastel bomber jacket to bring the trend right into 2012 with a safari edge.


Favourites included chic shift dresses featuring bold tribal patterns. This look works well on girls of all shapes and sizes as the simple, understated cut of a shift dress provides the perfect canvas for statement prints. Channelling aztec style, mosaic-inspired prints also added a touch of exotic colour to skirts and dresses. These bold prints are easy to work into your everyday wardrobe, provided you keep the look subtle. Wearing just one tribal print piece will be enough to nod to the look without overdoing it. Simple style skirts and shift dresses are best for carrying off bold prints and should be teamed with a plain white or black tee for a toned-down take on the look.

Fearless Accessorising

It was all about accessories at Burberry Prorsum this season, where belts and bangles created a fabulous African look. Long summery dresses in bright colours look amazing with a chunky tan waist belt, creating a cool tribal look that is both fun and feminine. Chunky wooden jewellery and stacking bangles are perfect for adding an ethnic edge to simple outfits. You can make last summer's basic maxi dress work for you this season by topping it with some oversized beads or a long faux-tiger tooth necklace and wild, tousled hair.
Over at Balmain, it was bags stealing the show, with stunning pieces such as their classy clutch bag with embroidered detail. This beautiful, brightly coloured bag looked like treasure from the pyramids, with its aztec-inspired pattern and glittering jewels. These prints are now cropping up all over the high street as dainty clutch bags and nearly-structured totes in earthy tones. Whether you're looking to work exotic evening elegance, or simply to add a tribal touch to your everyday wardrobe, a statement safari-style bag is the ideal way to incorporate this decidedly daring trend into your outfit.

Safari style scarves are another great way to add a touch of the exotic to your spring wardrobe. A skinny leopard print scarf can be used to lift a plain black tee or to add an exotic edge to crisp white shirts. To keep the look polished, team with sharp slim-fitting trousers and a pair of understated metallic-toe flat shoes from Jane Shilton.

Whether you're a wild child who likes to work the catwalk's most exotic trends, or a polished professional who needs to look sharp and sophisticated, safari style has something to suit you. From vibrant aztec prints, to amazing African-inspired accessories, adding one or two key pieces can help update your wardrobe. To keep it chic, just remember that when it comes to the tribal trend, less is more.

Zoe is a professional fashion blogger with a keen penchant for upcoming trends. Currently, Zoe is writing on behalf of heritage footwear brand Jane Shilton.

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