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Moda In: Looking Back, and Ahead

NEW YORK — Moda In’s recent trend forecast for the fall 2003 season — presented by European trend consultant Angelo Uslenghi — focused on what he called "taking elements from the past and modernizing them for the...

NEW YORK — Moda In’s recent trend forecast for the fall 2003 season — presented by European trend consultant Angelo Uslenghi — focused on what he called “taking elements from the past and modernizing them for the future.”

“It’s important to just fish into the past, not to totally emerge,” he continued. The three directions for the season, according to Uslenghi, are Jolliness, Ruggedness and Neatness.

The mood of Jolliness was very playful. “Everything is embellished or decorated in some way,” he said. “There’s a feeling of Zandra Rhodes, Ossie Clark and Talitha Getty.” A group of light-to-medium pastels, with add-ons such as light gray and a brighter fuchsia, round out the color palette.

Fabric highlights included pipe-like quilting and wavy three-dimensional effects; gold laminating or plating on everything from velvet to cotton canvas; tie-dyes, overdyes and ink smudges, and handcrafted braiding, crochet and cross-stitch effects on macro tweeds.

Ruggedness was more robust in feeling. “Protection is the key word here,” said Uslenghi. “Fabrics are treated and mistreated to give them a more rustic edge.” Colors were warmer with a mix of burnt reds and oranges and smoky grays and blues.

Uslenghi pointed out examples of the trend: Soft fabrics such as longer piled velvet and velour that were beat up; surface effects such as hammering, tire tread embossing and resin coating; wools with a moth-eaten effect; bonding that included neoprene and corduroy as well as wool-jersey and nylon-twill combinations, and folklore influences such as engravings with metal threads.

The final grouping, Neatness, was more glamorous in nature. “It’s about a discreet elegance,” said Uslenghi, “and influenced heavily from the Fifties.” Colors here are deeper and more jewel-like: sophisticated blue-grays, bronze, pewter and ash gray.

A masculine feel leads the direction in fabric with extra-fine wools, baby alpaca and baby camel hair. Other trends are coarse grain textures for outerwear and silks with a technical edge such as iridescent rubberized taffeta, waxed, moire satins and silicon-treated double crepes.