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Essential Fashion Terms

A-line - A dress or skirt silhouette that is narrower at the top, flaring gently wider toward the bottom thereby resembling the letter A.

Body bag - Also called body sacks or packs. Any hands-free bag. For example, backpacks, arm pouches, bags slung across the body diagonally, waist bags (used to be called fanny packs).

Bootleg or Boot cut - A pant style that is tapered to the knee and very subtly flares out to accommodate the bulk of a boot (flares have a much more noticeable flare, bell-bottoms have huge width.

Capris - Slim-fit pants that range from knee length to lower calf. Also called peddle pushers.

Cashmere - Originally the hair of the Capra Hircus goat, found in Kashmir and Tibet. Now defined as any wool under 19 microns thick and raised in other parts of the world.

Chalk Stripe - A broad vertical stripe.

Corduroy - French for "Cord of the King," this cotton fabric has vertical wales, which are designated in width as 1/4" cord (larger wales), 1/8" cord (smaller wales), high/low ( varigated cords), etc.

Cropped pants - Short pants, generally around ankle length.

Faux pas - Literally, it means a false step. A fashion faux pas means an error in style judgment.

Funnel neck - High neckline without seams for streamlined look.

Glitterati - The beautiful people, the popular crowd, the shiny set, celebrities (a combo of glitter and literati)

Haute - Literally, high. Haute couture means high fashion, which is a perfectly acceptable term. However, haute is used often instead of hot -- Example: "Find out what's haute for fall."

Item du jour - Item of the day. Something particularly timely and "now."

Mary Janes - Blunt-toed, single strap shoe can come in variety of heel heights and toes from asymmetrical to square to round.

Outré- Something that is overdone, excessive or exaggerated.

Paillettes -- Huge sequins. Spangles.

Pashmina - Finest grade of cashmere that is  a short, thin inner layer hair from Himalayan goats of 12-14 microns thick (human hair is 75 microns).

Passé- No longer in style. Faded, in the past.

Pinstripe - A fine vertical stripe, usually in white or gray.

Power Beads - Usually bracelets, sometimes necklaces made out of semi-precious stones, that have "healing" meanings. Rose quartz = love, turquoise = health, amethyst = intelligence, etc. Also, beads can come in wood or sterling or with Chinese characters or Sanskrit.

Shrug - A sweater, usually of shrunken proportions worn as a layering piece. Recent styles almost look like they are made of sleeves only.

Skant - combination skirt (usually a mini) and pants.

Tres chic - Very fashionable.

The Ultimate Fashion Slams
bulletIf you have to ask, you don't get it.
bulletSo last year
bulletVery yesterday/last week/last century
The Ultimate Fashion Praise
bulletChic (chicer, chicest)
bulletTo die for


Scooby Doo, where are you?
Beautiful baskets for everyone!