Get ready to take a fashion adventure into the urban jungle and celebrate the wild child in all of us. Safari chic has been inspiring fashion designers for years. Ralph Lauren created a whole lifestyle out of the aesthetic in his advertising campaigns of the '80s. Meryl Streep glamorized the iconic style in the epic award-winning film "Out of Africa," and then there was "Jurassic Park."
This spring, the safari classics have once again been updated with sophisticated elements of utilitarian menswear, military staples and a fresh neutral color palette for a modern wardrobe. Here are five ways you can add some exciting touches to your closet without ever leaving home:
— The Safari Jacket. If you only buy one thing this spring, this is the piece you'll want. The new safari jackets are belted, sleeker in silhouette and have giant patch pockets. This season, they even come in buttery leathers. More casual versions evoke a comfortable anorak style. And of course, these jackets, whether in polished cotton or lightweight leather, make great transitional outerwear: team one with a floaty floral dress for weekend wear or dress it up with matching trousers for the office.
— The Safari Fashion Colors. Another way to add instant cred to your safari-inspired wardrobe is with a neutral color palette. And these aren't just any black or navy neutrals. Instead, stick to olive greens, sandy browns and, of course, the most classic khaki. This year, rusty paprika reds and golden turmeric give traditional neutrals a zesty flavor. Layer all these earthy hues together to give your outfits even more personality.
— The Safari Pants. From cropped cargos and jodhpurs to button-front wide-legs to creamy denim jeans to midi-length culottes, pants go on safari this spring in a wide variety of styles. And don't forget shorts! Jumpsuits are another option; mix them with cargo jackets or wear them on their own. If you want a change from your tried-and-true blue jeans, try a new pair of khaki pants or olive shorts.
— The Safari Shirtdress. If you're looking for an oldie-but-goodie, the shirtdress is a familiar style that can easily be accessorized and layered with jackets, vests, tees and sweaters for year-round wear. Long flowing skirts in cool linen are also warm-weather favorites and versatile backdrops for your favorite safari toppers.
— The Safari Accessories. This may be the easiest way to give your wardrobe a walk on the wild side. Animal prints are all over the place now — in shirts, scarves, handbags, jewelry and shoes. Chunky gold bracelets and earrings are perfect foils for earthy colors. Oversized belt bags and leather and linen tote bags are other ways to carry off a little of the safari vibe.
Now you can start planning that trip to Africa! You have your packing list.
To find out more about Sharon Mosley and read features by Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.