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STREET LEVEL

A bright idea worth repeating

October 29, 2006|Chris Lee

THE new new thing in high-end street fashion isn't even a "thing." At least, it's not a $65 T-shirt or $350 jeans from Japan or limited-edition Nikes or another must-have item for the urban cognoscenti.

The latest street-wear trendlet is a "colorway" -- coolhunter jargon for "color combination" -- that mixes pastel hues with Day-Glo colors, neon green, Windex blue and shocking pink notable among them. The tone-on-tone look often appears in repeating patterns (diamonds, dollar signs and machine guns are common motifs) on hooded sweatshirts, T-shirts, jeans' pockets and sneakers. For active-wear companies like New York's Mighty Healthy, A Bathing Ape from Japan and Orange County's Triumvir, such cross-colors are the new black.

Rickey Kim, creative director of online magazine Riottt who works as a fashion consultant for urban apparel companies, refers to the colorway as "the 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air' look."

"It's all about that repeating textile pattern," Kim said. "Those colors and patterns are sampled from the late '80s and early '90s fashion in the same way hip-hop samples other music. And right now, it's huge."

-- Chris Lee

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