Not every great fashion item smacks of color, print or pattern.
Some of this season's best-looking accessories (and home decor items) are devoid of any color. Clear bracelets. See-through shoes. Watches with transparent bands. Acrylic lamps.
That makes these pieces a nice complement for everything else in your wardrobe or house, especially this summer when you want to lighten up.
“Lucite accessories are a hot trend right now that has been seen all over the runways,” said Sofia Wacksman, vice president of trend for Kohl's Department Stores. “These versatile pieces help add a sleek and sophisticated feel to almost any look. Give bright ensembles a modern touch with a chunky Lucite bracelet or pendant necklace. Add ultrachic style to an all-white outfit with Lucite sandals or sunglasses.”
Lucite and clear accessories aren't new. In the 1950s, any Hollywood starlet worth her bleached blond hair and mile-high stilettos reached for an acrylic handbag. Marilyn Monroe carried one in the film “Niagara” and was photographed in a magazine wearing acrylic high-heel sandals.
Betsy King, shoe buyer for Balliets, said she remembers wearing her grandmother's clear shoes back in the day.
Fast forward, and today Lucite offers a fresh look in shoes.
“We are seeing lots of clear heels and uppers,” King said. “Lucite adds a barely there look that elongates the leg but still offers a punch of fashion. Everyone from Valentino to Diane von Furstenberg has played with this trend for summer.”
If an allover clear plastic look isn't appealing, consider pumps and sandals that have Lucite accents or soft plastic trims, such as heels and straps.
“Personally I am loving the block Lucite heel. Definitely my favorite way to do the trend,” King said.
Anyone remember jellies, those PVC plastic shoes that were so popular in the 1980s? They've been reinterpreted with an emphasis on comfort by upscale shoe designers many times in the last three decades.
Acrylic resin, also known by the brand names Plexiglas and Lucite, isn't just a fashion trend. Its popularity is soaring once again in home decor and furniture.
The material became commercially used in furniture, jewelry and handbags in the 1930s. Helena Rubinstein, who created a worldwide cosmetics empire, furnished her New York City apartment with many high-fashion acrylic pieces, including an illuminated bed. That was in the '30s.
Lucite has had its moments over the years, both in home interiors and fashion. Philippe Starck introduced the Louis Ghost chair in 2002 and is credited for the renewed interest in acrylic furniture. Did fashion inspire him or did he inspire fashion?
Whether fashion accessories, home decor or furniture, there seems to be no end to this clear trend.