Fashion Flashback

Published 12:00 am Saturday, August 17, 2002

Fall fashion 2002 looks exactly like the fall fashion scene of 1972. That old saying of whatever is old becomes new again holds true with this season's clothing and accessories. Details such as, ruffles, lace embroidery and beaded trim, are added to blouses and jeans this year. This year's styles are not for the shy at heart. These are like the clothes that mothers and grandmothers of today's youth used to wear.

Stacy Erkeneff, a sales clerk in the junior department at Younkers said, "The look this year is called Vintage Hippie. A woman came in and looked at the mannequin we have all dressed up in flared jeans, crocheted vest, beads, and hat and she said, 'That was me 30 years ago.'"

For those who were in high school 30 years ago or part of the Woodstock Generation, it is definitely a step back in time seeing yesterday's fashions on the teens of today. One woman shopping said, "If only I hadn't worn my old bell-bottoms out, my daughter could be wearing them today."

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Her daughter might be wishing her mother had saved those old faded hip huggers because of the look in denims today. Denim jeans look worn-out, stained, bleached, and have a look that is called "whiskering". Whiskering on denims is faded streaks of white on the jeans that are usually on the front hip area. Whiskering happens naturally on denims that are worn by outdoor workers day after day. Now this natural wear and tear is a fashion statement. Denims for 2002 should not be crisp and clean looking. Diesel denims, a popular brand name, are put through a rigorous workout by rubbing grease and sandpaper on the denim to give it a worn, used look.

Denim doesn't go out of style and the retail stores in the Austin area have a variety of jean brands to choose from. Maurice's at the Oak Park Mall has 15 different types of denim in prices ranging from $26.00 to $54.00. Along with denim pants and skirts there are denim jackets. One of the fashion no-nos is to mix color-faded denim with un-faded denim.

The look to go with denim skirts and pants this year are shirts and blouses with fine points added. The blouses this year have gathered busts, ties and bell sleeves. Some are peasant style with flowing sleeves that have stitching and ties. Waists and round hips are accentuated with sashes, scarves, leather fringe and beaded and studded belts. These same wraps for low-waisted pants can be used as a wrap for the head.

"Besides denim, mole skin and corduroy are popular clothing fabrics for this fall. Shoes are a heavier style. Oxford and chunky heeled shoes go great with this year's clothing," said Blair Winkler, manager of Maurices.

Accessories are busy this season. The looks to go with the feminine blouses are Gypsy style with beads, chunky arm and ankle bracelets with dangly earrings to match, the more accessories, the better. Braided and beaded hair and a floppy hat complete this gypsy, vintage hippie look.

A transitional jacket to wear this fall before it becomes too bitter cold is a faux fur coat in denim or suede. The fur can be removed for tamer look.

Stacy Erkeneff of Younkers said, "Turquoise jewelry is popular and crocheted clothing. Purses to accessorize the look are usually earth-toned. Animal prints are still in. Clogs are back. Velour has made a come back big time for winter. Clothing is fun for 2002."

While young men are not as flashy and busy as young women, the look for them is still jeans.

Blair Winkler said, "Guys go for a darker jean. Low rise cargo pants are still popular. Guys seem to like to have the look of their pants falling off them."

Shirts for young men are knitted tops often worn over woven shirts. Accessories for guys are hemp and beaded necklaces and leather belts to keep those pants from sliding down.

Keep an eye on the sales as they come and go quickly at the area stores. You don't have to break the bank to look good this fall, and those same jeans can look different each day when you accessorize. Have fun and be daring and colorful when dressing this season.

Sheila Donnelly can be reached at 434-2233 or by e-mail at