Shopping the Trends: Fashion: Another look at 1995, a year that threw the kitchen sink at the trend watchers.

December 28, 1995|By Vida Roberts | Vida Roberts,SUN FASHION EDITOR

It was a year of contradictions and confusion for the fashion-minded as designers and retailers opened a grab bag of trends, hoping to recharge a lagging interest in shopping and dressing.

What to wear? Fashionables touted the return of "Conservative Chic," polished dressing patterned after legendary clotheshorses like Jackie O. and Grace Kelly. Male fashion took inspiration from "Forrest Gump," a film that launched "Geek Chic."

When to wear it? IBM demoted the suit and put the corporate stamp of approval on "Casual Friday." As others followed suit, Thursday nights became a nightmare of unscrambling dress codes.

Who's the leader? Boomers, having found truth and virtue in earth-friendly cottons and linens, were shaken to see Generation X-ers embrace industrial synthetics as fashionable alternatives. Teens dressed in laundry hamper fashion were turned on to "Clueless," a film that put Beverly Hills princess dressing back in favor.

What's next? Who knows? That's what makes fashion the fun game it is.

IN: Color, in every shade imaginable

OUT: Black, but only for a minute

IN: Short skirts and long skirts

OUT: The indecisive knee-length

IN: Mixing patterns, stripes and florals

OUT: Mixing shades of beige

IN: Polished and pressed chinos and khakis

OUT: Distressed denim

IN: Lean pants that ride the hip

OUT: Tight pants that hold on with stirrups

IN: Sabrina as a role model

OUT: Madonna as a role model

IN: Dressing up for dinner

OUT: Over-dressing for work

IN: Redheads

OUT: Blondes with black roots

IN: Blue-frosted eye shadow

OUT: White-frosted brunettes

IN: Bangs that are feathered

OUT: Bobs that look dated

IN: Pumps that can walk

OUT: Limousine stiletto heels

IN: Building a wardrobe

OUT: Shopping for clothes

IN: The Italian fashion houses -- Prada, Gucci, Versace, Fendi, Armani

OUT: The Parisian claim to fashion supremacy

IN: RuPaul as spokesmodel

OUT: Kathy Lee as spokesmodel

IN: Isaac Mizrahi as himself

OUT: Cindy Crawford as an actress

IN: Fur that looks faux

OUT: Faux that looks real

IN: Hush Puppies and variety store sneakers

OUT: Doc Martens and boots with aggressive tendencies

IN: Urban hipsters in prep-inspired designer wear from Boss, Polo, Nautica and Tommy

OUT: Raiders chic

IN: Baseball hats worn forward

OUT: Baseball hats worn backward

IN: Shoulder bags slung on the shoulder

OUT: Backpacks slung on the shoulder

IN: Unisex shared fragrances

OUT: Unisex dressing

IN: Classic and muted tone-on-tone ties

OUT: Conversational loony-toony ties

IN: Decorating your boudoir by letting Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein or Gianni Versace coordinate your paint, pillows, sheets and duvet covers

OUT: Faking it with a glue gun the Martha Stewart way

IN: Meat and potatoes as a rare treat

OUT: Treating sun-dried tomatoes like a precious commodity

IN: A microwave meal built from leftovers

OUT: A microwave meal from the carry-out

IN: A perfect martini

OUT: A questionable microbrew

IN: Cabbage as the coleslaw

OUT: Cabbage as the centerpiece

IN: Luxury sedans garaged in the country

OUT: Utility four-wheelers garaged in the city

IN: Well-behaved pooches

OUT: Jack Russell terriers

IN: Friendship

OUT: Networking

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