Spring 2006 Trends: Retro Is Modern

If anyone doubted that popular styles in women's and men's market trickled down to kids' wear, then one glance at the children's collections at the ENK Children's Club Show would have changed their minds.

Take the babydoll dress, an up-market trend last spring in women's wear. Guess what? Empire-waisted sundresses with shoulder ties were seen all over the kids' show. Shrugs that looked like starlets' bed jackets, tiered skirts, sequins and tunics that were hot last spring and summer in women's boutiques, are just as important in the kids' market for 2006.

Boys will look especially natty when the weather warms up in an off-the-rack version of dad's "bespoke" styled suit. They'll wear the sets in crisp ticking stripes and plaid seersuckers - if their moms can persuade them to take off their T-shirts. Speaking of Tees, they're even hotter this season than they were last spring.



Lay it on me. There's nothing wrong with a blouse over a skirt or pants, but if you can layer a shrug over the blouse and add pants to the look - that's even better.

1-2-3. Forget the straight and narrow. Dresses, skirts, even swing tops sport tiers.

Animal house. Peace symbols are so last season. For spring, the dove flies high, and a Noah's Ark of animals purr, squawk, bark and growl on sportswear and even dresses.

A Monte Carlo summer. The sequined or embroidered tunic tops sexy little swimsuits for a glamorous summer. Sequined sandals complete the look. (Below, B'eautique swimsuit and tunic.)

Vintage light. White wear was spotted in weightless layers of cotton for shirts, prairie-style tiered skirts and eyelet blouses. The boys' version of the look is blue and white striped seersucker suits, overalls and shorts.

Greaser guys. Button-down shirts, windbreakers and baggy jeans with deep cuffs channel the innocent days of double dating at the bowling alley.

Tee time. T-shirts continue to be the "It" fashion item for boys. Simple they aint. This season's Tees are dyed dusty colors, printed with animals, labels or sports motifs, and appliquéd with letters.

Hawaii Five-O. Big, splashy Hawaiian prints return for a rerun in boys' sportswear and swimwear.

Pretty in paisley. Folkloric, Jacobean, embroidered on skirts and tunics, there's no escaping the paisley motif this season.

Unfinished business. Ruffles and tiers aren't enough. Designers leave hems and seams unfinished too, so nothing looks precious.

Ballerina wear. Tulle is seen peeking from beneath skirts, floating above patterned or solid underskirts, or, sigh, used for tutus yet again.

Star Jones. At this point, I wouldn't call sequined, tie-dyed T-shirts worn with embellished jeans a trend - it's an evergreen that's never going to leave.




PUCKER UP. Those airy little puffs lighten the look of cotton shirts as well as the bodices of summer dresses. The newest shape: A few inches of puckers across the chest with string ties at the shoulder.

THE TUNIC TONIC. So chic, so practical. Designers top tiered skirts with the shape, use it to cover bikinis, and team the Seventy's revamp with sandals as an instant dress. Sequins and embroidery lend sparkle.

TIERS OF JOY. Whether skirts are knee-length or longer, there are tiers - and not just two or three of the flouncy layers. Multi-tiers in varying fabrics and patterns appear in many collections. Ditto for dresses and even swing tops.

HANKERING FOR HANKIES. Hanky hems feminize skirt borders as well as tops.

STEP INTO MY BOUDOIR. Silky little jackets edged in ruffles, keep chilly shoulders warm.

RED BUTTONS. One-button cardigans make no-fuss cover-ups.

HELLO SAILOR. Multi-button, wide-legged sailor style pants that stop mid-calf or at the ankle are popular in girls' and boys' collections.



GOL-LEE! Fifties' style, wide-cuffed jeans, button-down shirts, bowling alley windbreakers - that's vintage for boys.

PREP POWER. Seersucker suits in bright plaids or simple stripes get edgy when partnered with striped polo shirts and distressed or animal printed T-shirts.

PRECIOUS CARGO. Long shorts and pants still sport the popular cargo pocket.

VESTED INTEREST. Cotton vests knit with bright or neutral toned argyles add a dapper note to casual ensembles.



MELON BALL. Call it rosy peach, shrimp or coral, designers mix multiple tones of the fruity hue with luscious results.

COMING UP ROSES. Rosy tones - either with an orchid cast or peachier hues - are constants in girls' collections. The color looks especially fresh when paired with khaki. (Below, from Jean Bourget.)

KEEP IT KHAKI. Manufacturers went less green and more cocoa on the color for a softer, wearable effect. Olive teamed with deep red has a rich, jungle feeling.

HOT CHOCOLATE. Still popular teamed with sky blue and pink in girls' collections; khaki, soft gold and cream in boys' lines.

THE SKY'S THE LIMIT. Sky blue is used in solids and prints teamed with ultramarine for a cool, Mediterranean feeling, or bright red for a sporty feeling.

RIGHT IN WHITE. Vintage inspired lace, crocheted trim, eyelet and gauzy crinkled cottons are keeping the vibrant tone of summer from overheating.



-China silk and silk chiffon

-Washed denim

-Terry cloth



-Vintage table cloth lace

-Tulle underskirts, overskirts, and again, the tutu

-Seersucker plaids for boys



-Birds and doves (Below, from S.H.R.N.K.)

-Animals printed or appliquéd on T-shirts

-Liberty style florals

-Simple stripes, ticking stripes

-Big Sixties style flowers


-Monochromatic Jacobean prints

-Multi-toned Jacobean patterns



-The tunic as cover-up

-Short wrap skirt with sequins

-Boy shorts

-String bikinis



-Crocheted flowers

-Crocheted lace

-Cloth flower "corsages"




-Sequined sandals



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