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April 2nd, 2003 Rachel Beckman | Special Section Stories
 

FROM CATWALK TO SIDEWALK

Watching the market for the latest trends.

     
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Illustration by Nate Pack
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WW hit Portland streets and boutiques in search of the hottest trends. Not only that, but we flipped through a big ol' stack of New York fashion magazines to sort out what will only be in vogue in Vogue (did anyone ever really show the tops of their thong panties last spring? Didn't think so.) from the styles that red-hot Portlanders will actually wear--or should wear. To get the newest spring fashion trends without having to sell your mutual funds (oh wait, those were gone months ago) check out these Portland boutiques for less-expensive versions. We did list our favorite runway finds from New York, London, Paris and every other Big Fashion City on the block. Not that anybody can really afford any of that stuff, but we just thought you should know it's out there.

TURNING JAPANESE

Catwalk: The classic Asian top is floral-print silk with a traditional high, stiff collar. The Chinese dress version, called a cheongsam ($1,325, Neiman Marcus, www.neimanmarcus.com), was featured in Roberto Cavalli's designs for his spring '03 collection, along with kimono wrap tops.

BALLET UP TO THE BARRE

Catwalk: Pop culture has certainly seen extreme versions of this trend in the last few months. Who can forget Lara Flynn Boyle in David Cardona's full-on pink tutu and lace-up ballet slippers at January's Golden Globe Awards? Sure wish we could!

OH LA LINGERIE

Catwalk: In this celebration of everything girly, what could be more feminine than bloomers? An "oops-I-forgot-the rest of my outfit" silk slip dress by Ralph Lauren ($5,500, www.runway.polo.com) or a more risqué Victorian-era corset will get the message across. So go on and mention your unmentionables: It's sexy as hell.

BRIGHT LIGHTS

Catwalk: Apparently the fashion world has decided that the more you dress like a scoop of sorbet, the better. By that standard, this season looks sweet indeed. Check out Louis Vuitton's line of candy-colored logo handbags at Saks Fifth Avenue ($415-$2,000, 850 SW 5th Ave., 226-3200). Price tag a little daunting? It's a collector's item, and that totally makes it worth it (...rrrright).

Sidewalk: Lots of boutiques in town are carrying Asian imports and Asian-inspired designs. The Powder Room carries cute tops ($28.95, 814 NW 23rd Ave., 248-9160), and down the block Cargo Inc. has the aforementioned cheongsams ($72, 806 NW 23rd Ave., 241-3532). But if you really want to dress in the spirit of right-now, rising-sun fashion, try being innovative. We've had word Tokyo teens--a trend-obsessed group if ever there were one--are wearing see-through skirts over skimpy skivvies. OK, maybe that's a bit too much.

Sidewalk: Snip off the sleeves of an old sweater and scrunch them over your calves for leg warmers à la Fame, or cut a hole for your thumb and wear them as arm warmers. If you're too lazy to do that, drop $12-$16 for a pair at Urban Oufitters (2320 NW Westover Road, 248-0020) with neon-colored ribbon lacing.

Sidewalk: Lingerie-inspired clothes are seeing daylight this season, and the trend is loaning a healthy dose of sensuality to racks all over town. Go to any vintage store and pick up the real deal, like a cute camisole from the Red Light Clothing Exchange ($8-$22, 3590 SE Hawthorne Blvd., 963-8888). A word of caution: Your everyday underdrawers should never make a debut as outerwear. Never. Ever.

Sidewalk: Walk into any trendy shop in town and prepare your retinas for an assault of color. Example one: bright-pink denim jeans by Halogen ($68, Nordstrom, 701 SW Broadway, 224-6666). Let's get this city dressed up like a handful of Jelly Bellys!

 
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