The birth of trends is usually announced with some warning by an all-knowing, yet distant relative looming somewhere, who forshadows the next sneaker craze to appear on the family tree. The new baby on the way was usually an accident. Just as we had grown accustomed to the simple luxury of it all, the Glam Rock movement is butting its disco ball head through the style cracks. Just because Studio 54 and the accompanying indie flick Velvet Goldmine were released, does not mean that it is time for glam rock to come back right exactly now. Hold on to your spray glitter, as there are low-cost ways to deal with this sudden transition. Break out those old vinyl pants that you never, ever thought you'd wear again except on Halloween, or scour your local Salvation Armys for old leather or PVC pants and spray them silver. Don't worry about perfection. Distressed is good. Make sure that you do this in your backyard or on your roof and not in your house with the windows shut. Note: These are one of the few things that you CAN wear with a grey-twin set and be safe from appearing too pedestrian. Spray paint applications work on everything from old boots and platform shoes to bags and are advised for all trends that we know will be over in a speeding flash.

Accessories are usually all about handbags and sunglasses, but this season, Mini bikes are the nowest of the accessory hour. Bikes with the folding apparatus are better for fashionistas on the go, but even retro kids bikes are not only stylin', but will save you the big buck. Scour the flea markets in a hurry! Note of caution, as with all urban trends, the item du jour is often coveted by evil materialists and taken from their rightful owners. Lock 'em up good. Kryptonite on the body and a U-lock on the wheel, and never to parking meters, encouraging lifts, knock-knock.

Running away with the prize for fashionable function, the best new accessory in production on the American market are oversized men's wallets with shoulder straps that can be worn under or over jackets, with Timberland as forerunner. As it took America a full decade behind Europe to catch onto phone cards and Metro passes, it's about time they got this one. My guess is that women with strong style intuit will keep these Holiday gifts for themselves.

The most annoying accessory of the moment is the shoe developed in the Miu Miu laboratories that resulted in a hybrid between a running shoe and a Mary Jane that would lend the perfect finishing touch to a haphazard witch costume. The perpetrator is usually spotted uptown on feet trying hard to project downtown cool and has become the wannabe mascot of the season.

On the home furnishing front, there is much ado about "pillow" top bedding these days. Written up by major fashion press and pushed relentlessly at every mattress outlet stateside, just say "no" if you can. We couldn't resist a mid range version with 510 springs at 360 bucks to replace the futon who had too many stories from too many moves for one lifetime and was ready for its final rest. After the test drive, we settled on the Back Care Deluxe. The pillowy top was warm and snugly, and made us feel loved. The problem with love at first sight, is that the test drive can only occur during store hours, and leaves out the harsh realities of a day-to-day relationship. During our two week encounter with Pillow Top, we had a vague back ache that was not deep enough to reach for Advil, but annoying enough to slow us down. Imagine being beaten by cotton balls. Driven to exchange (usual within 60 days), the best contender quality wise, was the same exact bed, albeit with a tighter weave upon its Pillowed top, that supplies just enough extra support. Until next time, may you dream in Technicolor.

© Fashion Icon
November 1998