Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Back-to-School Blues Stone Washed or Deep Indigo, Denim Is a Classy Uniform

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Back-to-School Blues Stone Washed or Deep Indigo, Denim Is a Classy Uniform

Article excerpt

WHAT CAROLYN Schweizer likes about denim is a lot.

The 18-year-old graduate of Parkway Central High School will be taking most of her 20 pieces of blue denim away with her this fall when she travels to the campus of Colorado State University.

"I like just basic jeans," says the young woman, a camp counselor this summer. "I think a lot of people are wearing used Levi's, and I like that, too, but it's hard to find them sometimes."

Instead, what she buys are new, five-pocket, button-fly jeans in washed colors, plus denim shirts and a sleeveless, cropped denim jacket.

Schweizer is on the leading edge of trends in denim, says Jeff Glik, president of Glik's, and she may be headed for yet another one.

"Darker denim is projected to be very big for fall," Glik says.

"Basically, what happens is that jeans manufacturers are getting their inspiration out of Europe. And for two years, dark denim has been hot in Europe. This is the year it's going to translate in the U.S."

A reason for that, he adds, is that customers like Schweizer already have five-pocket jeans in stone-washed colors. "That's the styling that she wants. But in the five pockets there's no way to give it a new look except in the the finish."

Darker blues also made a few inroads in back-to-school wardrobes about 10 years ago, Glik adds, although washed-and-worn techniques rule, even this summer, with the washed shorts and overalls that are among the most popular denim garments of the season.

Other ways to make denim look new are with details and accessories.

Glik likes black corduroy added to collars of fall's sleeveless denim jackets and, for winter and holiday, black velvet taking the place of the cotton cords.

Fall's popular, slightly dressy sweater sets also give denim new dimensions, especially when the twin sets are paired with darker blue jeans.

Some of these trends may account for the 527 million pairs of jeans sold in this country last year.

That figure comes from Norman Karr, executive director of a New York trade group called Jeanswear Communications.

He agrees with Glik that denim trends are all over the place right now, especially in terms of the cut of new jeans and the colors. …

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