Byline: Julee Greenberg

NEW YORK — Novelty pieces will be more important than ever to entice shoppers next year, and contemporary firms are ready to serve of plenty.
Lace tops the list of most popular fabrics, with designers using it on tops, skirts, pants and dresses. They are also adding it to casual items like T-shirts and jeans.
Ruffles, floral prints and gypsy-inspired looks are also found across the board. Sweater-based companies like Easel and Cousin Johnny are concentrating on offering a bigger mix of novelty knits.
Julie Chaiken, principal and designer of Chaiken, said her customer is “looking for something trendy, but not so trendy that she can’t wear it the following season.”
Areas of focus at other vendors include:
Feminine floral printed dresses, lace and ruffled blouses are big at Betsey Johnson.
Easel offers the “sexy active” look in sweaters.
Luca Luca’s spring line features flowing A-line skirts and a natural color story of nudes, browns and white.
Lace, ruffles and “anything feminine” are big at Cynthia Steffe.
Custo Barcelona’s signature T-shirts remain important, as well as new denim offering.

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