QUIET CHIC. REFINED ALLURE. These are the words people in fashion are using to describe the mood of women's wear for fall '88. Extremely short skirts that really weren't attractive on anyone except the very young and the very shapely have all but disappeared from the scene. So have those exaggerated poufs and dresses that reflected the froufrou of Parisian designer Christian Lacroix.The fashion world has regained its sanity, according to Ed Spitzer of ZCMI's Cameo Room. It's going to be a pretty, practical season with pleanty of wearable clothes in the marketplace.
And for most women that's welcome news, indeed!
The wearable clothes designers are offering this season were spotlighted Wednesday and Thursday at the Town Club, 1081 E. South Temple, during the group's annual fall luncheon and fashion show. Fifteen club members modeled outfits typifying the latest trends, while other ladies and their guests lunched at beautifully appointed tables set up throughout the clubhouse.
Clothes were from the Cameo Room.
Along with the words "quiet chic" and "refined allure," the word "options" is essential to remember this fall. Whether a woman is looking for a skirt that flirts with the kneecap, falls to refreshing new lengths below the knee or plummets nearly to the ankle, she can find it. Designers have learned that you can't dictate to today's independent-minded women; you simply can't say short is it the way so many did last fall and expect unequivocal applause. Today's stylish women insist on choices.
Choices galore are beginning to fill the ready-to-wear racks around town. And suits, certainly, are some of the most beguiling.
As Town Club models passed from room to room in the clubhouse showing off the latest fall finery, the importance of the suit was underscored again and again. Suits were shown for every occasion in a woman's life - from tailored and classic business days at the office to glittering and glamorous evenings out on the town. (A ritzy black wool crepe suit with a flirty peplum was typical of the feminine styles in the latter category. Also outstanding: a silken plaid suit featuring a beautiful mixture of colors - magenta, red, green, gold - virtually every vivid shade in Mother Nature's fall palette).
There were suits of the softest wool; knit suits; suits in brilliant solid shades; suits that intricately combined different but related patterns. Some of the silhouettes focused on dramatic long jackets. Others revolved around the newsy little cropped style, which is being shown with both skirts and pants and for fall. And that brings up one of the strongest trends in the women's apparel market: the trend to trousers.
Pants never have been more important on the ready-to-wear scene than they are this season. Women began turning to them as a safe and sure alternative last year, The Year of the Mini. Designers, sensing the interest, filled this year's fall collections with a vast array of innovative slack styles - beautiful, feminine pants that never, ever make you think of the boy next door.
Pants are being shown for daytime hours combined with smart jackets and/or matching blouses and sweaters (the total look is becoming more significant in fashion with each season that goes by). They also are putting in an appearance in floaty, romantic versions for after-five. You'll see many wide and flowing palazzo pants for holiday parties. And the jumpsuit, closely related to pants, also will be dancing the nights away.
Important though pants are for fall, they haven't completely eclipsed dresses. Indeed, the dress - sometimes sleek and body-defining, other times cut along more subtle chemise lines - still is coming on strong. Some of the prettiest dresses will shine after the sun goes down. Many for formal events twinkle with beads and sequins. Others get their dramtic impact from rich color combinations and sumptuous and elegant fabrics.
The fabrics we see in fashion - splendid velvets, chiffons, silks, wools - get more wonderful all the time. Whether you're talking evening or daytime, much of the magic associated with the world of style has to be attributed to the materials that top design houses hunt for around the world and then bring to the fashion consumer.
As for colors this fall - well, they run the gamut from tawny tones to bold brights. The bold brights, such as fuchsia, brilliant green and vivid blue, sometimes are used alone. But more often they're combined with that perfect foil, black. And when a woman chooses a fall outfit in such tones, it's a cinch she isn't going to fade into the woodwork!
That's one of the best things about fall clothes, in fact - they're striking, but there's never anything gimmicky or overdone about them. Designers have returned to classic, smart dressing; they're offering women outfits this autumn that aren't going to look dated by next year. The season has been tailored to fit the investment dresser who wants to get fashion longevity for her money.
Even coat styles are classic. The trapeze, the cape and the trench are back in the spotlight in lengths clearly designed for comfort and practicality on chilly and inclement days. Furs also come in dozens of different stylish silhouettes. Indeed, these days a woman can find almost any style she desires interpreted in precious pelts.
Furs are being worn for all occasions now - not just special evenings. But whether a woman puts on a little fur jacket to run to the supermarket or an elegant topper to go to the opera, she's going to feel elegant. That's the wonderful thing about fur - always has been and always will be. It makes you feel special and every occasion seem special, no matter where you're going.
No wonder it brought down the house when models donned foxes and minks and such for the finale of the Town Club show.
Planning the show, "Fantastic Fashions," were Mrs. Martin C. Lindem, chairman, and Mrs. Robert Gordon, co-chairman.
Assisting were Mrs. Daniel K. Brown, luncheon chairman; Mrs. William G. McCarty, models chairman; Mrs. Robert W. Elliott and Mrs. Robert H. Lamb, decorations; Mrs. James B. Rains, production; Mrs. Vincent L. Rees, publicity; Mrs. W. Hague Ellis, reservations; and Mrs. Thomas C. Moseley, programs.
Town Club members who modeled were Mrs. John B. Stressenger, Mrs. Pat Cummings, Mrs. Jack Coombs, Mrs. Donald Rosenblatt, Mrs. Robert Gordon, Mrs. Richard Weggeland, Mrs. Carl Woolsey, Mrs. Stephen W. Ridges, Mrs. Max J. Smith, Mrs. James Rex Miller, Mrs. D. Armstrong Penney, Mrs. Robert Griffiths, Mrs. Russell P. Calame, Mrs. Hal S. Bennett and Mrs. Susan W. Steele.