Fashion: Go beyond the pale

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The Independent Online

Lazarus-style resurrections are common in fashion. Who hasn't derided a garment only to find themselves with one in every colour before the season is out? There are, however, certain items that need a little longer to rehabilitate themselves for a return to the style canon.

This season, the hopeful candidate for a fashion U-turn is that previously much-maligned fabric, pale denim. Redolent of 1980s pop stars and children's TV presenters, lighter washes have been rejected in favour of darker hues for so long now that one might have been forgiven for thinking it was impossible to make jeans in shades other than indigo.

This might be because dark jeans are as forgiving as their pale counterparts tend to be unforgiving. But a flattering trend can last only so long, and this summer designers are throwing down the gauntlet with tones from snowy stone-wash to faded cornflower.

London Fashion Week favourite Christopher Kane made a virtue of the material's 1980s associations, using it to create another classic of the era, the ra-ra skirt. Frayed, raw edges on a biker jacket and ripped jeans added to the Bros vibe, although paired with elegant chiffon blouses, they looked resolutely modern.

At Chanel, the mighty Mr Lagerfeld opted for a soft, mid-blue wash for cute playsuits, halterneck dresses and blazers, while the Danish designer Peter Jensen provided one of the most wearable options, cladding his models in relaxed-fit, baby-blue jeans turned up at the ankle for a clean summery look.

A word of warning, however, against wearing these hues in ultra-skinny styles: one unflattering trend at a time, please.

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