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Trends for spring

In the accelerated world of fashion, we’re anticipating what spring will bring even before we’ve taken our winter sweaters out of the cedar chest.

It’s always good to look ahead, so here, are a dozen trends that will update your wardrobe for spring 2007.

• Dresses: the overarching theme for spring 2007.

• Metallics, in gold and silver, are still relevant.

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• Three-quarter length sleeves with a bell, ruffled or lantern-shaped opening.

• Pleats: accordion and crystal pleating give a delicate touch.

• Texture: lace, tiers and appliqués all add a defined structure to garments.

• Volume: billowing silhouettes that take up space.

• Stripes emerge wide and bold.

• Bubble: a pouffy way to launch volume.

• Sky Blue and other soft shades of azure, pink, taupe and gray.

• Patent: the shiny leather brightens up in colors other than black.

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• Draping architecturally and artfully placed.

• Trench roomier with distinctive details and in novel fabrics.

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Vintage jewelry

Collecting vintage jewelry should be more than just plunking down your dollars for an item, says Judy Rosenbloom, owner of The Treasure Chest in Chicago.

"To me, the difference between something that is a collectible and plain old jewelry is it has a story to it," she says. "I think my customers come in looking for that story, rather than just go into a department store to buy a new piece."

As an example, she brought out a painted-eye brooch. To the uninformed, it is a pin with an eye painted on it. But there is a story.

In the late 18th Century, Rosenbloom explains, King George of England fell in love with a widow — and married her secretly — but was later forced into an arranged marriage. George and his secret wife had portraits painted of each other’s eyes, which they would wear as brooches. People would see the mysterious eyes, but no one knew whose they were. Soon the eye brooches caught on.

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Her other tips for collecting:

• Know terminology. "Antique" implies that a piece is 100 years old or more. "Vintage" is interpreted as 40 or 50 years old. And "although they’re incorrect, a lot of people think of vintage as costume jewelry, that is, not using precious metal or precious stones." Bakelite, a colorful early plastic, is vintage.

• Pick something with legs. Don’t buy a pair of pink earrings simply because they match a sweater you own. What you buy "should be something that will last longer than the outfit," she says.

• You don’t have to break the bank. You can spend thousands or you can pick up an 1890s-vintage locket for around $100.

• You can design your own piece. Take several old keys — the kind from Victorian desk drawers, furniture or jewelry boxes that sell for a dollar or so at flea markets —shine them up and put them on a nice chain or ribbon for a unique and stylish piece of modern jewelry using vintage items.

• Find an item that speaks to you.

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Fashion Q&A

Q: For our wedding, my fiancé plans to wear a burgundy tie and vest with his tuxedo. Should my father also wear burgundy accessories, or should he match his tie and vest to my mother’s dress, which is pale blue?

A: It is customary for the groom to stand out from the other men in the wedding party, so I suggest he be the only one to wear burgundy accessories. Your father could coordinate with the groomsmen’s colors or with your mother — though perhaps with a deeper shade of blue. Or he could go with classic black accessories, which always look handsome.

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