April 28, 2005

Campus Couture

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I dream of having a closet full of Chanel and Versace but sadly, I’m living on a college student’s budget. What little money we have goes to the necessities — textbooks, alcohol, fro-yo at Jason’s — leaving practically nothing to spend on a designer wardrobe. Fortunately, some of your favorite labels now offer lower-priced lines that cater to those of us who are low on cash but high on style.

Isaac Mizrahi Sunglasses
Buying a pair of $200 sunglasses is a worthless investment for me because I will inevitably sit on, step on or mangle them in some way before the summer’s end. This stylish pair from Isaac Mizrahi’s well-known Target line is just what I need. At only $20, this is one pair of designer sunglasses that I can crush and replace without breaking my budget.

Nicole Miller Top
Nicole Miller’s classy designs have suddenly become affordable with her new line, sold exclusively at J.C. Penney. I know, I know, when I heard that J. C. Penney was involved, I was skeptical too — that is, until I got a peek at the goods. This cute pink top is fun, sparkly and only $26! You’ll have enough money left over to splurge on shoes.

Armani Exchange Blazer
Giorgio Armani’s gorgeous creations have graced royalty, Hollywood stars, famous politicians … and you, thanks to A|X Armani Exchange. The 14-year-old sportswear line caters to a younger crowd that covets Armani’s genius but lacks the funds for couture. This sleek blazer is a must-have for any well-dressed guy.

BCBG To the Max! Dress
Max Azria’s BCBG stands for bon chic, bon genre, a Parisian slang term meaning good style, good attitude. His To the Max! line fits this description to a tee, as it features sophisticated designs with a European flair. Check out this little black dress — perfect for any formal occasion. It will become a mainstay of your closet.

Jean Paul Gaultier Top
We all know of Gaultier, Madonna’s designer of choice during her infamous cone-bra phase in the ’80s. The outrageous Jean Paul is still around and, much to my delight, has designed a nautical-inspired line for the French mail-order catalog La Redoute. The corset-back top is particularly hot.

Karl Lagerfeld Back & White Collectio
Swedish retail giant H&M made headlines for its partnership with designer Karl Lagerfeld. The classic pieces that made up his black and white collection are destined to become collector’s items. Lagerfeld will not be continuing his relationship with H&M, but we can only hope that this low-budget designer trend continues into the future.

Archived article by Katie Azzaro
Sun Staff Writer