From News Day
It’s pretty commonplace for stripes of the nautical variety to rear their lines come spring and summer. But this season, there’s a new stripe in town — bolder, colorful and showing up on unexpected wardrobe pieces.
J.Crew is offering stripes galore. “We invented a holiday just to celebrate our love of stripes,” says Somsack Sikhounmuong, head of women’s design. They really did — National Stripes Day — and while it passed a few weeks ago, J.Crew is selling many spectacular pieces, including a thick, vibrant stripe of in-house created colors that runs horizontally on a pencil skirt.
Did someone say horizontal? Pencil skirt? Designer Nikki Kule is a serious stripe devotee whose brand, Kule, consists of mostly striped apparel. “There are still people who don’t like to wear stripes because they think it makes them look wider,” she says, “but I don’t believe that myth at all. Stripes are for all shapes and sizes and ages.” Celebrity stylist Phillip Bloch agrees. “The rules are gone. People aren’t scared of stripes anymore and that’s why they’re are having a huge renaissance,” he says. With a broader acceptance of different body types, he notes that the only question people should ask is “does the garment make your body look the way you want it to look?”
Of course, preppy types have found comfort in stripes forever. They’ve always been part of our DNA, says J.Crew’s Sikhounmuong, whether deck-striped tees, button-up shirts or ball skirts. At Penelope, a trendy boutique in Woodbury that’s far from preppy, owner Gabrielle Banschick says “you can make stripes very bohemian or rock and roll.”
Adds Kule, “We believe stripes are urban and can be worn day or night.” And the more the merrier, she says. “Wearing stripes on stripes is fun and playful.” For Kule, stripes are meant for every occasion — except one. “The only place I don’t like to wear stripes is on a boat. It’s so cliché.”
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