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BY DESIGN

Style '96 : What Worked and What Didn't

December 26, 1996

STYLE MAKERS

...WHO WE ADORE...

Sharon Stone and Jack Nicholson (because even while kicking it at a Lakers game, above, they look cool).

Andre Braugher (because he blows us away on "Homicide" with his starched dress shirts and puppy-dog eyes).

Gwyneth Paltrow (because she's beautiful, simply).

Antonio Sabato Jr. (three words: El Papi Chulo).

Lisa Leslie (because she can practice her jump shot between modeling assignments).

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...WHO WE DON'T

Cher and Demi Moore (because they're loaded with artificial ingredients).

Dennis Rodman (because he's beginning to remind us of Tammy Faye).

Pamela Anderson Lee (because take away the tattoos and she's Barbie incarnate).

Skanky real-life models (because, check out the guy in photo above).

Butt-head (because, huh-huh, shouldn't his teeth be straight by now?).

DETAILS

ARRIVALS

Bloomingdale's (lands just in time to wish itself a prosperous holiday season).

Ontario Mills (bargain-hunters fly in from as far away as Brazil to patronize 200 outlet stores spread over 1.7 million square feet in San Bernardino County).

Todd Oldham (New York-based Texan opens a charmingly cluttered boutique on Beverly Boulevard).

Cynthia Rowley (New York-based Midwesterner's shop helps make Robertson Boulevard the bomb shopping street).

Max Mara (Italian clothier gives South Coast Plaza one more Southern California exclusive to brag about).

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DEPARTURES

Rene Lacoste (French tennis jock who transformed his nickname--Le Crocodile--into a status symbol on polo shirts dies in Paris at 92).

Harold C. Fox (one of at least three clothiers who claimed credit for creating the infamous zoot suit dies at 86).

Anne Klein Collection (parent company pulls the plug on the high-end signature line but allows its kid sisters, Anne Klein II and A Line, to live).

UHF (SoCal's most interesting anti-fashion mag, pictured, ices the January / February issue; "it's in a coma, not dead," insists publisher Scott Becker).

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CHANGING PARTNERS

Gianfranco Ferre (parts company with Christian Dior but will continue to design his eponymous collection).

John Galliano (British designer of hyper-feminine styles ditches Givenchy for the Dior job but will still find time for his own line).

Alexander McQueen (just 27, fellow alum with Galliano of London's Central St. Martins College of Art & Design takes over Givenchy).

Richard Tyler (signs on to create the Byblos men's and women's collections in addition to his own designer collections for men and women).

SUPERLATIVES

MOST UNDESERVING 'IT' GIRL

Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy (the Mrs. is a smart dresser, yes, but nothing too terribly special).

MOST DUPLICITOUS SUPERMODEL

Naomi Campbell (having forgotten her PETA vow, "I'd rather go naked than wear fur," she poses for a 10-page fur spread in W).

MOST AMUSING ENTRY IN THE FASHION LEXICON

"Lipping up" (in which club girls retire en masse to the restroom to replenish their mouth paint; note: among this crowd, the liner is worn shades lighter than the filler).

MOST DUBIOUS ACCESSORIES

Bruno Magli shoes

Mossimo stock (the price rises to $50 after the initial public offering, then falls to $12.75 and can't get up).

MOST EXPOSURE IN FASHION LAYOUTS

GirlStar (pictured) and Roxy (magazine editors develop a big crush on junior girls' lines by surf wear giants Gotcha and Quiksilver, respectively, devoting spread after spread to the clothes).

MOST UNLIKELY PERSON TO CALL THE FASHION POLICE

Salman Rushdie (a cardigan / sport coat man, the writer,protests when Pakistani filmmakers depict him in garish safari suits in a movie detailing his fictional demise).

MOST VULNERABLE AD CAMPAIGN

Urban Decay (the makeup manufacturer specializing in hues such as "soot," "asphyxia" and "mildew" pulls its print ads endorsing individuality and underscored with the caption "Burn, Barbie, Burn" when Mattel gets huffy).

GET OUTTA HERE!

* Conspicuous initials on sun glasses and belt buckles.

* Junkie chic.

* Beauty books filled with such helpful hints as "Never leave the house without earrings."

* Cigars as accessories.

* Lisa Marie Presley as a cover girl.

* Lingerie prostheses.

* The VH-1 Fashion & Music Awards.

* Dr. Scholls in psychedelic colors.

* Blue fingernails.

* Rush Limbaugh neckties.

* Big, overly tousled Oscar hair.

* Anything designed to glamorize water bottles.

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