Gangster chicGangster movies are back -- and so are...

Inside Fashion

December 13, 1990|By Donna Peremes | Donna Peremes,Orlando SentinelKnight-Ridder News ServiceNew York TimesEdited by Catherine Cook

Gangster chic

Gangster movies are back -- and so are sideburns. Could there be a connection? Kathy Weaver thinks so.

"It's gangster chic," said Ms. Weaver, director of education fothe Supercuts chain of hairstyling salons.

She predicts that fashion-conscious young men will be sporting the look that's big in the latest spate of gangster movies, including "GoodFellas," "Godfather III" and Dustin Hoffman's "Billy Bathgate."

Essentially, the hair is long and slicked back on top, but fairly short at the back and sides -- except for those sideburns on the cheeks. Think Sean Penn, John Cusack or Nicholas Cage and you've got the picture.

When "Mr. and Mrs. Bridge," the latest film starring Paul Newman, debuts this winter, gentlemen who have loved the recent crops of three-button suits and soft silhouettes will find a fashion feast.

The filmmakers turned to the experts at Savile Row tailor Gieves & Hawkes for the wardrobe for Mr. Newman and the rest of the men in the cast. The British firm handed off the assignment to its American licensee, Hickey Freeman. The result is a collection of menswear styles popular from the 1920s to the 1940s.

The movie should be filled with the original versions of some of the fall's best looks. The biggest difference between what's on the screen and similar styles already in stores, say the information givers at Gieves & Hawkes, is that the clothes in the film are made of heavier fabrics and more conservative colors.

Seems that back then men hadn't yet been introduced to the wonders of pumpkin, aubergine and mustard.

*"Neutrals," a new mail-order makeup kit from Ford model and area resident Kerry Whitaker, was inspired by her work as a beauty consultant for Family Circle magazine, she says. "I was responsible for reader mail, and it seemed to me that hundreds of women were perplexed about color selection," she explains. Ms. Whitaker says she applied the knowledge she gained from (( 20 years in the beauty industry to create a simple, color-by-number kit with versatile shades that women can coordinate with their clothes and complexions. For more information call (800) 888-1420. Ask for Department BW-BAL, Item 1290.

*Johnny Depp may have the confidence to permanently emblazon something like "Winona Forever" on his person, but most of us aren't quite ready for that no-turning-back step. Tattoos-To-Go, though, allow even the mildest milquetoasts toindulge their Motorcycle Mama or Salty Sailor fantasies without the social and emotional repercussions of the real thing. Imagine! Those often drunken, impulsive actions can be replaced by a simple, civilized procedure involving no needles or toothless practitioners named Bruno. Rubbing alcohol, cotton swabs, and the transfers themselves are all that is required for a two-to-five day foray into the world of skin decor. Tattoos-To-Go come in two groups: "Hollywood Style," the hearts, flowers and angels favored by stars like Cher, and "Rock Style," for the lizard-and-skull set. They retail from $3.50 to $5 and can be found at Harborplace's Accessory Place.

On the first fur days of the season last week, there appeared to be less animal hair than usual in the tonier precincts of New York City. In recent years unit sales of furs have been high, as prices went down. So this may be an intimation of a shift not so much in fur consumption as in fur wearing.

Some women simply leave them in storage. "It's fair to say there has been an increase in the number of women who have not taken furs from storage," said an executive of Revillon, which stores more than 150,000 furs in 39 fur salons nationally.

Both unseasonably warm weather and the animal-rights movement have been cited as reasons the furs have stayed locked up. But anti-fur protests do not seem to have afflicted Revillon's clients.

"On a nationwide basis, we have never had a single fur come to us for the removal of blood, paint or any foreign material," the Revillon executive said, referring to fur vandalism.

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