A new face on fashionBlue jeans at Octavia? Satin bomber...

Inside Fashion

November 07, 1991|By Chicago TribuneEdited by Catherine Cook

A new face on fashion

Blue jeans at Octavia? Satin bomber jackets? What is the world coming to?

Fans of the elegant separates and party dresses for which thCross Keys boutique has been known, need not panic. The store, founded in 1965, has not abandoned its classic customer, but merely reached out to include those with a younger spirit as well. Hence, you'll now see here quilted metallic miniskirts, funky big shirts with miniature football buttons, and designer denim pieces.

The changes began gradually about a year and a half ago when Octavia Dugan's 27-year-old grandson, Hammond Jay Dugan IV, took over the business reins. Now that fall merchandise is in place and holiday apparel is arriving daily, the store's new look is quite evident.

You'll find the less expensive secondary lines of designers like Gordon Henderson, as well as the hot new line SNTN produced by New York's very hip Charivari specialty store chain and glittery holiday knits from the West Coast firm She & Friends.

The lobby of the Fashion Institute of Technology was transformed last Monday to celebrate the opening of its new exhibition, "Halston: Absolute Modernism," a retrospective of more than 100 ensembles by the late fashion designer who made Ultrasuede a household word and whom Newsweek dubbed "the premier fashion designer in all America" in 1972.

While the politically correct '90s might have had a problem with ++ Halston's dramatic personal style -- his omnipresent sunglasses, cigarettes and the wealthy, sometimes drug-prone, often stay-up-all-night crowd he ran with -- they probably would have found his '70s fashions -- simple styles in luxurious cashmere and stretchy silk jersey -- just right.

"This kind of simplicity and classicism is what is of the future," said Lynn Manulis, president of the posh Martha's shops. "He was the precursor of everything that's happening now in the '90s and in the new millennium. All the ornamentation and excess of the '80s are demode. Halston was a visionary."

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