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HOT PROPS

Cuff Link

August 18, 1994|ROSE APODACA JONES

Menswear is turning up everywhere . . . that is, when it comes to cuffing pant legs. The coolest examples are unwashed, raw denim jeans with a one- to two-inch fold, says Scott Omelianuk, fashion writer for GQ magazine. "It's a London street influence. Just buy jeans a couple of inches longer than usual." Business suits, of course, should always be cuffed. "The added weight allows trousers to hang better," he reminds. "It just gives them a better appearance. It looks more finished." The exception: tuxedo pants, which must always hang sans cuff.

Locker Chic

Jeepers, creepers, where'd ya get those sneakers? Athletic-inspired fashions of late are mutating with the Teddy Boy influence for fall. The results include such funky items as the Trainer shoe ($84), which combines sneaker styling with lug creeper soles. The U.K. shoe is available at Rack N Ruin in Lake Forest. Creepers have been making a feverish comeback lately, says owner Steve Wagoner, "mostly among those in their mid- to late-20s who are nostalgic for the early '80s when they used to ruckus around in them." Customers come from as far as San Diego and Santa Barbara to land a pair from Wagoner's store, which is one of the few sources for the original kind. As for the new version like the sneaker, Wagoner expects it to find fans among the younger set.

Not Crossing the Line

How do you draw the line? That's what Mark Smith is asking teens about preventing HIV and AIDS infection. He's getting the message across with a symbol and educational campaign he created with Jim Brightwolf to empower teens, through their Art For Life's Sake organization. Smith founded Laguna Beach-based AFLS in 1992 after finding out his brother was HIV positive. The dot represents risk identification; the slash means risk reduction, and the circle is personal commitment. Smith hopes it will become as identifiable as the red loop. But instead of a sign of mourning, this is about education and prevention. The campaign has already found an audience among students in Orange County and San Diego public schools and through the American Red Cross Youth Volunteers. "They're drawing the symbol all over their folders," Smith says. Among the adults getting into spreading the word is jewelry artist Ollie Cox, who designed a sterling silver pin ($95, above) and bolo ($110) and a gold bracelet ($250) with the symbol. About 15% of the profits go back into the program. The jewelry is available at Elements in Irvine and the Garrett White Gallery in Laguna Beach and Los Angeles. Smith says the "ambiguity of the symbol opens up the opportunity for conversation and, hopefully, education without preaching. We still have to focus very much on prevention because there's no cure in sight."

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