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Archive for Monday, September 18, 2006

Layers tough to master, but still a hot look for fall

September 18, 2006

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Before you load on those   layers, consider this made-for-the-real-world styling trick: If you layer on top, as at Ann Taylor Loft, streamline your lower half with straight-leg jeans.

Before you load on those layers, consider this made-for-the-real-world styling trick: If you layer on top, as at Ann Taylor Loft, streamline your lower half with straight-leg jeans.

Piled-on layers reigned supreme on the catwalk, but it's important to remember that runways are not reality - they're a designer's way of presenting a concept, rather than something to interpret literally. Before you load on those layers, consider these made-for-the-real-world styling tricks:

¢ New to the concept? Try a bright, strappy tank under a dark, wide-neck blouse. It's an easy-to-implement idea (you likely already own both pieces), and the straps will add a shot of color to any outfit.

¢ Making this trend work on your bottom half tends to be more tricky. In general, two layers works (dress over pants; denim skirt over leggings) but anything more is too much. Relegate bright colors and/or patterns to the outermost layer: Cool as red-and-white striped leggings under a plaid mini can be, most folks will find the combo tough to pull off.

¢ Monochromatic layers look great if you play with texture - a crocheted wool cardigan, say, over a crinkled-silk tunic with cotton leggings and studded suede flats, all in varying shades of gray and black. Avoid head-to-toe cotton layers - they tend to be a little "Flashdance."

¢ Balance is essential: If you layer on top, streamline your lower half with straight-leg jeans tucked into knee-high boots. (And if you're adding bulk via layered skirts and leggings, think small when it comes to your top.)

¢ When you've got this much going on fashion-wise, it's best to keep hair and makeup simple. One option: a wide, 60s-inspired headband, a stylish way to skim back your locks in one fell swoop.

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