While retailers have been busy holding their fall fashion parties, store executives are also tracking the fall best sellers, if any.
Plaids are selling (surprise!), executives said. Long jackets, with fingertip-length hems, are also doing well, according to some executives, as are solid colors (you need them to offset all the plaids).
Other fast-moving items and looks:
* Slim pants, or stirrup pants, to go under the longer jackets.
* Dressed-up denim, like the beaded jeans jackets and skirts from Lizwear by Liz Claiborne.
* Anything with zippers, a continuing trend.
* Flippy short skirts, often pleated, in all fabrics, colors and price ranges.
"The No. 1 item, in every division, across the board, was short pleated skirts," said Mara Urshel, a senior vice president and general merchandise manager for Saks Fifth Avenue, with 47 stores nationwide.
This season you can be sure there will be a zippered leather jacket and a tartan pleated skirt in your fashion future.
Modern fashion promotion has done much toward standardizing fashion and removing its air of mystery. But it also has raised the general level of taste. And for apparel makers, who have been suffering for several seasons, who needs mystery?
* Style note: Several thousand motorcycle types converged on West Street in Manhattan on Sunday for a Vietnam veterans' demonstration. Not one was wearing Chanel.
And finally: the bandanna-head look for men seems to have gotten out of control lately. Handkerchiefs are everywhere.