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Browsing through fall’s trends

September 24, 2015
By Joyce Schenk , Westfield Republican

I've been interested in many things during my lifetime, but I've never taken much interest in the world of fashion. In fact, I seldom pay attention to what the fashion world dictates as the season's "must have" additions to a woman's closet.

But last week, as I sat with other captives in my doctor's waiting room, I picked up the latest issue of Vogue to pass the time. It's not that I suddenly became fashion conscious, but the only other magazines available were Wine Connoisseur or Yachting.

The issue of Vogue was devoted to the latest styles for the fall season. As I turned the pages I kept hearing myself mutter, "Where do they come up with these things?"

The segment on the hottest looks started off with a wisp of a young woman dressed in what looked like a collection of mis-matched items picked from the discard box at the Salvation Army.

With a flowered blouse, a pair of checkered slacks and a cable-knit sweater at least two sizes too large for her small frame, the model pouted from behind a huge pair of dark glasses. I suspect the glasses were designed to keep her from seeing what she was forced to wear in the name of fashion.

The next spread was devoted to one of the latest trends, according to the Vogue editors. The model was wearing a pleated skirt. But, unlike any pleated skirt I've ever seen, in several places, this one was split from the hem up to just below the panty line, baring most of the model's shapely legs.

Since the words "shapely" and "legs" have never been used together in referring to my standing equipment, I knew this style wasn't for me.

When I turned the page, I saw something I thought women had left behind long ago. To my surprise, the section was devoted to one of the latest retro fads, the "wasp waist." The models were wearing corset-like waist cinchers under their clothing.

It may have just been my imagination, but these women looked a bit blue around the lips, perhaps from lack of oxygen due to restricted breathing.

As I turned the pages, filled with ads for perfumes, jewelry, high priced cosmetics and fancy cars, I came across a number of other style statements. There was the puffy blouse "enhanced" with a huge bow at the neck. The bow was so large it hid part of the model's face.

And the "baby doll" dress was also displayed. This flashback to earlier times had a Peter Pan collar and a hem far above the knees.

On another page, the display of accessories brought back memories of daughter Sherri's teen years. During an especially rebellious period, Sherri spent one whole month wearing her personal "uniform" composed of scruffy tee shirts and jeans. She belted the jeans with a piece of discarded rope from her Dad's garage,

According to Vogue, rope belts are among the hottest accessories for fall. Apparently, Sherri was simply ahead of her time.

Just as I finished browsing through the slick pages of Vogue, the nurse finally called my name. I was happy to abandon the fashion magazine to the next waiting room resident. And as I headed back to the exam room, I had to admit once again that I am totally out of step with today's fashion world.

Fortunately, "non-fashion-itis" is a "malady" I don't want the doctor to find a cure for. If it saves me from baby doll dresses and wasp waists, it's one disability I'm happy to live with.



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