Archive for Sunday, August 18, 2002

Lingerie gets girly for fall, spring

August 18, 2002

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— Since vintage clothes and even 1980s styles are finding their way back onto the cultural radar, it should come as no surprise that new lingerie also has been inspired by things past.

At the Lingerie Americas show this year in New York City, undergarments were lacy and frilly and very feminine. Designer labels including Chantelle, Calvin Klein and Elle MacPherson Intimates took girly looks and made them womanly, using lace and trim and fashion colors such as yellows, deeps reds and violets.

For everyday basics that still have a romantic flair, Jockey is offering a line of all-lace bras, thongs, briefs and camisoles. Their show for fall and spring highlighted garments made of a matte and floral lace that are simple, pretty and seamless.

Boy-cut briefs and hipster shorts are also big with designers. Whether in lace or cotton, boy briefs are being paired with bras as often as thongs.

"The boy short was a European-inspired design that seems to be becoming the item of the year," says Dorothy Wahl, the vice president of sales for Jockey's women's division. "The trend seems to be heading more toward a feminine look in pastels and soft fabrics."

Calvin Klein took the boy-cut brief a step further by introducing what they call the "boy thong," which is half brief, half thong, and meant to be worn with low-riding pants.

However, if your clothes are going to be clingy, then your undergarments should be as understated as possible. Seamless is a popular trend for the fall and spring. Designers across the spectrum are creating garments that offer support and coverage without becoming part of the outfit.

Gap has come out with a seamless tank top made of a super-fine cotton. Until recently this type of fabric has been available only in higher-end stores because it was difficult to make on a larger scale, says Rachel DiCarlo, a spokeswoman for Gap. Seamless fabrics are knit on a cylinder and Lycra helps keep their shape.

"These are designs that disappear under clothing while still giving you a natural look," says DiCarlo.

Gap has the "Essential Bra," a bra that molds to the body and is made in both cotton and smooth nylon. They also have a "T-shirt Bra," which is smooth with more padding than their other bras but without the seams, perfect for wearing under thin clothing.

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