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STYLE : FASHION : More . . . or Less

February 23, 1992|BARBARA FOLEY AND JILL SOKOLEC

Maximal or minimal--choose one or both. In the absence of any clear fashion direction this spring, designers have gone to extremes: Lengths are up or down, silhouettes are linear or curvy, and accessories are piled on or pared down.

The more-is-never-too-much look captures the romance of decorative arts with pattern, texture, color and baroque embellishments. The less-is-quite-enough look echoes modern art and architecture, with not a button or belt to interfere with sleek design. Both celebrate the artistry of workmanship and hark back to a time when craftsmen, not machines, sewed the cloth.

While there's a style choice between wild and restrained, the world of high fashion offers few financial options: Almost everything is extremely high-priced.

Hair: David Cox/ Celestine L.A.; makeup: Agostina/ Celestine L.A.; models: Rachel Brunn/ IT Models (opposite page)/ Annette Olsthoorn/ PRIMA Models

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