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Wear the pants, girls

fashion-and-trends Updated: Feb 17, 2010 02:10 IST

AP
Highlight Story

Fashionable women would do well to raid their boyfriends’ closets come fall, judging from the looks being shown at New York Fashion Week.

Menswear influences were everywhere during the week of previews, from the trendsetting runway of Alexander Wang to the typically ultra-feminine Victoria Beckham, who included trenches in her fall collection, shown to a handful of reporters in a flower-filled uptown townhouse.

DKNY showed boyfriend jackets and Rag & Bone had a collection rooted in tailored suits. Oddly enough, the look melded seamlessly with school girl styles also popular in the fourth day of fall runway previews.

Diane von Furstenberg confessed to the crowd she has a more masculine side. “I always wanted to live a man’s life in a woman’s body,” she wrote in her notes left on the seats of editors, stylists and retailers at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week at Bryant Park.

She went on to explain that her theme of metamorphosis aimed to capture the yin and yang of strength and sex appeal. Menswear jackets were worn over flowery dresses; chainmail decorated soft knits.

A rose-printed velvet blazer over a stone-colored, soft-crepe dress captured von Furstenberg’s message in a single outfit, as did a chiffon, rosette-covered bolero worn over a gray felted wool blazer.

The cool girls will probably be wearing a lot of menswear styles in the fall. Rag & Bone, which has become a bellwether brand for downtown hipsters, debuted a collection Friday that was rooted in tailored suits but stayed quirky and feminine thanks to tweaks in proportion and styling.

The designers also confirmed some of the trends that seem to be emerging, including layers and menswear, but also military-inspired styles, heavily textured garments and a dominant palette of black and gray.

A FUR COMEBACK
A model showcases a Zac Posen ensemble. Fur coats returned to the runway with Peter Som, Prabal Gurung and Adam by Adam Lippes on Saturday at New York Fashion Week.

But Mongolian lambswool — a fuzzy, almost featherlike material — emerged as a popular alternative. But with campaigns against the use of animal fur, lambswool may be an acceptable alternative.

SPARKLE
A little gold goes a long way. Same goes for other metals like silver and bronze. At New York Fashion Week, metallic fabrics shone on the runways. “A little sparkle adds a lot to your wardrobe,” Tracy Reese said before her show on Monday.

Metallics were prominent in the collections of designers Zac Posen, Carolina Herrera, Rachel Roy, Luca Luca (above) and Diane von Furstenberg.