The end of slutwear

This Croissant Fantine dress from the Lilly Pulitzer collection has a groovy 1960s feel.

This Croissant Fantine dress from the Lilly Pulitzer collection has a groovy 1960s feel.

Ellen Wulfhorst, Sun Media

, Last Updated: 4:31 PM ET

Now you see it.

Soon you won't. In a trend sure to be a relief to some and a disappointment to others, women will cover up instead of baring it all next season as the "slutwear" look comes to an end.

Demure designs have replaced scanty navel-baring looks on the catwalks of this week's semi-annual run of fashion shows, a reliable sign of what shoppers can expect to find in stores next spring.

"The slut is out now. She's dead," said Godfrey Deeny, senior fashion critic at Fashion Wire Daily.

In recent seasons, fashion has been filled with skimpy tops exposing midriffs, cleavage-revealing necklines and jeans slung so low that precious little was left to the imagination -- looks impossible to avoid on such pop icons as Paris Hilton and Britney Spears.

This season, blousy linen took the place of sheer chiffon, while shades of white chased away an edgier black.

Necklines were up, while hemlines were hovering down at the knee.

"It's very ladylike. It's not jump-into-bed fashion," Deeny said of the new look on runways as established powerhouses to new designers trotted out more fabric and less skin than in seasons past.

Marc Jacobs showed 1950s' style sweater sets and dresses of florals and gingham; Carolina Herrera showed knee-length Bermuda shorts; Kenneth Cole had pleated skirts and wide-legged trousers and Oscar de la Renta showed boucle suits.

Alice Roi, Rebecca Taylor and Cynthia Steffe brought out loose, Bohemian style peasant skirts and dresses.

Women who actually buy fashion may have sent a message to designers who have been preoccupied dressing rock stars, said Paco Underhill, chief executive of Envirosell, a market research company, and author of Why We Buy.

"There was too much slutwear," he said. "Slutwear doesn't play in the boardroom and it doesn't play in the office.

Trend forecaster Merrill Greene called the new look "prim and improper."

"It's the new modesty," she said.

"It's what's under the clothes, something seething underneath. We won't be showing it so much on the surface."


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