Camouflage styles are doing anything but blending in

  • Friday, October 4, 2013 12:35pm
  • Life

There is no hiding from camouflage.

The print that at one time was only a tool for military troops to go unnoticed has become a front-and-center look in fashion. It’s been adapted in luxe fur, sequined sweaters, athletic wear and casual kicks. It’s for girls and boys, women and men.

“The irony is that camo is anything but camouflaged right now,” said Zanna Roberts Rassi, Marie Claire’s senior fashion editor.

More utilitarian versions include vests and parkas at J. Crew and jeggings at Aeropostale. For spring, North Face has camo-inspired workout gear.

“Camo is peaking,” said Emilia Fabricant, Aeropostale’s executive vice president of design, merchandising and production. “It’s hitting everything, from sweaters to outerwear. It’s so graphic. It’s edgy but it’s also completely neutral.”

That’s the beauty of it: It dresses up, it dresses down. It is as urban or as country as you want to make it.

It’s evolved into something like the cheetah print that was, at one time, considered edgy and a little risque but is now offered in everything from sweet ballet flats to toddler clothes.

Camo retains its cool, though, especially when it’s worn with a wink, said Tom Mora, head women’s designer at J. Crew. It’s wearing the print in a feminine fabric or something like a parka over slim cargo pants and a lacy tank top or high heels, he said.

“I like the sexy take on the classic hunter look,” Mora said.

It shouldn’t be worn head-to-toe, Roberts Rassi said. The good news is that single pieces will have a long shelf life.

“This isn’t a trend for a single season,” Roberts Rassi said. “It 100 percent transcends time.”

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